Researcher examines the emotions and ethics in decision-making

Oct 15, 2012

Sukumarakurup Krishnakumar, assistant professor of management, and Doug Rymph, co-wrote the paper, "Uncomfortable Ethical Decisions: The Role of Negative Emotions and Emotional Intelligence in Ethical Decision-making," which has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Managerial Issues.

"The intriguing relationship between morality and emotions goes a long way," Krishnakumar said. "The previous few years have seen a number of accounting/management scandals and ethical violations in the (e.g. Enron). In this paper, we examined how emotions could influence managerial ethical decision-making, and the impact of emotional intelligence on the ethicality of decisions. Though it is widely known that ethical dilemmas involving other employees/managers are inherently emotional, not many studies have looked at this phenomenon."

In two experimental studies, they found that such strong negative emotions as and anger influenced individuals to make less ethical decisions, and that emotional intelligent individuals were able to make ethical decisions against the biasing influence of those .

"As far as we are aware, this is the first to test the direct influence of emotional intelligence in ethical decision-making in a business context," Krishnakumar said. "In light of these findings, organizations should consider selection and training procedures that will enable the use of emotional intelligence at work. This includes using well-established and validated tests for selecting and/or re-assigning employees and training procedures to enhance emotional intelligence skills of existing employees."

Explore further: Beyond human: Exploring transhumanism

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

How about dessert?

May 30, 2008

People with highly developed emotional sensibilities are better at making product choices, according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research.

Study: Execs blinded by bottom line

Jan 09, 2006

A researcher says corporations like Enron that overemphasize profits might make their leaders blind to ethical or moral issues.

We Aren't as Ethical as We Think We Are, Research Says

Mar 22, 2010

(PhysOrg.com) -- Ever since Enron, it seems more academics have been trying to understand and rectify unethical behavior. Research in a forthcoming paper might help organizations better understand thinking patterns in the ...

Recommended for you

Beyond human: Exploring transhumanism

Nov 25, 2014

What do pacemakers, prosthetic limbs, Iron Man and flu vaccines all have in common? They are examples of an old idea that's been gaining in significance in the last several decades: transhumanism. The word ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.