UCL School of Management

Research project

Emotion management in organizations


Work in modern organizations encompasses not just physical labor but also (in the case of service organizations) emotional labor (Hochschild, 1983) – labor that involves the employment of emotions in the service of the organization. The control of emotional labor places managers in the position of having to monitor employees' appropriate emotions and possibly intervene where emotions seem inappropriate. The emotionally intelligent manager may be able to assess and control emotions to facilitate the accomplishment of various goals, including the one of getting ahead.


Given the problems resulting from managerial emotion management, managers can be educated concerning the wide-ranging aspects of their roles and made aware that helping others with emotional problems is likely to be seen by subordinates as part of managerial work within the context of the organization's overall supportive climate. The good news for managers should also be communicated: employees are likely to ascribe helping behaviors on the part of managers to the quality of managers' leadership skills. At the same time, managers can be educated in the limits of their expertise when it comes to dealing with seriously upset subordinates.

Selected publications

Toegel, G., Kilduff, M., & Anand, N. (n.d.). Emotion helping by managers: An emergent understanding of discrepant role expectations and outcomes. Academy of Management Journal, 2013.
Kilduff, M., Chiaburu, D. S., & Menges, J. I. (2010). Strategic use of emotional intelligence in organizational settings: Exploring the dark side. Research in Organizational Behavior, 30 (C), 129-152. doi:10.1016/j.riob.2010.10.002 [link]
Toegel, G., Anand, N., & Kilduff, M. (2007). Emotion helpers: The role of high positive affectivity and high self-monitoring managers. Personnel Psychology, 60 (2), 337-365. doi:10.1111/j.1744-6570.2007.00076.x [link]

Link to the publication’s UCL Discovery page

Last updated Thursday, 24 July 2014


Research groups

Organisations & Innovation

Research areas

Social psychology of organizations

Research topics