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Effects of team leader emotional intelligence and team emotional climate on team member job satisfaction: A cross‐level

Xiao‐Yu Liu (University of International Business & Economics, Beijing, China)
Jun Liu (Renmin University of China, Beijing, China)

Nankai Business Review International

ISSN: 2040-8749

Article publication date: 16 August 2013




Western research on teams has paid an increasing attention to team's emotional process and corresponding outcomes. However, there were seldom studies examining the influence mechanism of team leader emotional intelligence on subordinate outcomes in teams, and the previous studies often neglected the team context. The aim of the study is to explore the cross‐level effect of team leader emotional intelligence and team emotional climate on team member job satisfaction.


Questionnaire survey on 148 team leaders and 840 team members was conducted. The paper applied hierarchical linear modeling analyses with the software HLM 6.06 to test the hypotheses.


The analyses on the matched sample showed that team negative emotional climate has negative effect on team member job satisfaction, and team emotional climate moderates the relationship between leader emotional intelligence and team member job satisfaction such that leader emotional intelligence has stronger effect on member job satisfaction as team emotional climate becomes more negative.

Research limitations/implications

First, it is a single time period study and cross‐sectional research design, which limits our ability to make causal inferences about the relationships proposed. Second, team leader emotional intelligence was reported by team leader themselves, and it will be better to combine self‐report and other‐report measures of emotional intelligence in the future study.


This study extends the existing theory through a cross‐level framework that examines how team emotional climate interacts with team leader emotional intelligence to affect member job satisfaction, thus enriches the studies on emotional intelligence and leadership, team emotional climate and team effectiveness. The study also provides evidence of group‐level emotion in China, a non‐Western cultural country, which enriches the existing body of studies sampling exclusively from Western cultural groups and the research of emotions in organizations at group level.



Liu, X. and Liu, J. (2013), "Effects of team leader emotional intelligence and team emotional climate on team member job satisfaction: A cross‐level", Nankai Business Review International, Vol. 4 No. 3, pp. 180-198.



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