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Value of the sociability trait

I have used three academic sources to discuss the value of the sociability trait as it exists in organizational settings.

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Discuss the value of the sociability trait as it exists in organizational settings. Please provide properly cited references for the 250-300 word response.
Academic literature and research studies conducted by Caliper indicate, that certain traits are related to one's ability to perceive and manage emotions in one and others. For organizations that believe an individual's ability to understand and manage emotions is critical to success on the job, measuring emotional intelligence may be the solution to identifying and developing successful employees, particularly leaders.

The workplace is considered a multidimensional environment that, depending upon one's position, requires the motivation and ability to succeed in a number of core competency areas: Leadership; Interpersonal/ Communication; Service Motivation; Problem Solving/Decision Making; and Personal Organization/Time Management. For example, emotional intelligence has been found to be positively related to success in the area of leadership, specifically leadership potential, in a sample of senior managers (Higgs & Aitken, 2003). Specific traits that are related to one's ability to perceive and manage emotions, and thus to remain disciplined on task and goal completion within these five competency areas, would include, at the very least: Abstract Reasoning; Accommodation; Assertiveness; Ego Strength/Confidence; Empathy; Flexibility; Gregariousness; Self Structure/Self discipline; Skepticism; and Sociability.

Sociability measures the ability and desire to be with and work with people. Sociable individuals will be motivated to hone the skills necessary to effectively collaborate with others. Compared to those lower in emotional intelligence, adults with higher emotional intelligence possessed stronger social skills and were more likely to report that they had close and affectionate relationships (Schutte et al., 2001).

A recent study investigated the relationships between these traits and job-related behavior, as measured by a competency rating tool, among a sample of 92 store managers (Caliper Report, #03-0321). Several items on the competency tool assessed the store managers' ability to focus on people, which reflects one aspect of their emotional intelligence. For example, the store managers were rated by their supervisors on the degree to which they were motivated to help others and the degree to which they took an interest in the career aspirations of their direct reports. These items were combined to produce a "people focus" factor score for each store manager. Store managers who had higher scores on the "people focus" factor displayed differences on some of the Caliper traits, compared to those who had lower scores on this factor. Specifically, those with high factor scores had significantly higher levels of Sociability and Accommodation than store managers who had low factor scores. Additionally, store managers with high "people focus" factor scores had somewhat higher levels of Empathy and Flexibility.

In another recent study by Caliper examined the relationships between these traits and results from an inventory designed to measure emotional intelligence, the MSCEIT (Mayer et al., 2002), among a convenience sample of 73 attorneys (Caliper Report, #03-0243). Scores on the MSCEIT branch entitled "Using Emotions" were positively related to levels of Accommodation. This finding suggested that the stronger the need to be helpful and liked, the better the ability to generate and to use emotion to communicate feelings. Results on the MSCEIT branch of "Understanding Emotions" were positively related to Abstract Reasoning. Thus, the greater an individual's problem-solving ability, the greater his/her ability to understand emotional information and how emotions transition from one stage to another. Finally, scores on the MSCEIT branch of "Managing Emotions" were positively related to Assertiveness, Ego Drive and Empathy, and negatively correlated with Skepticism. Thus, those who were more assertive, empathetic, persuasive, and optimistic scored higher on their ability to employ effective strategies that use their emotions to help them achieve a goal.

Findings from these studies support that specific traits are related to one's ability to perceive and manage emotions in one and others. First, the study among store managers indicated that those with a stronger focus on people (which may be related to higher emotional intelligence) displayed greater levels of certain traits such as Sociability, Accommodation, Empathy and Flexibility. Specifically, store managers who were more focused on people were viewed as outgoing, helpful and service oriented, and they were generally supportive of others with whom they came into contact.

The study among lawyers showed that certain traits were related to another measure of emotional intelligence. As expected, Abstract Reasoning, Empathy, Accommodation and Assertiveness were positively related to the emotional intelligence branch scores, and Skepticism was negatively related. These findings provided ...

Solution Summary

The solution uses three academic sources to present the value of the sociability trait in organizations.