Opening Up To Innovation: Emotional Intelligence As an Intrapersonal Resource

Document Type


Publication Date





Purpose: There is no innovation without ideas. More than ever before, these ideas are increasingly difficult to express in a changing environment ripe with emotions. Today's organizations need to understand why their employees may or may not develop, voice and implement innovative ideas in the face of this emotional tension. Current literature focuses on external factors that empower employees to innovate. This research attempts to shift the focus to the individual by investigating the relationship between emotional intelligence, openness to experience and innovation voicing behavior.

Design/methodology/approach: This study employs a quantitative survey among 288 US-based workers to test a mediated model of emotional intelligence, openness to experience and innovation-focused promotive voice. The authors assessed both the measurement and structural models through partial least squares structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM), while controlling for a range of variables with the potential to confound construct measurements.

Findings: The findings validated the positive effect of emotional intelligence on openness to experience, while also finding a significant impact of openness to experience on innovation-focused promotive voice. More importantly, evidence suggests that openness to experience mediates the relationship between emotional intelligence and innovation focused promotive voice.

Originality/value: These findings shed new light on why employees might start the innovation process by developing and, ultimately, voicing innovative ideas. Further, this new insight focuses on the impact of intrapersonal factors as it relates to innovation and attempts to fill a gap in what is known about innovative behavior.

Publication Title

European Journal of Innovation Management





First Page


Last Page


Find in your library