The Relationship between Emotional Intelligence and Negotiation Performance: Preliminary Findings of an Experimental Study with International Business Students.

Andreas Zehetner, Jörg Kraigher-Krainer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingsConference contribution


While the construct of emotional intelligence (EI) has been discussed for many years, its relationship with business negotiations performance is still unclear due to contradictory findings. Those range from a very large to a next to nil explanatory power of EI in explaining the variance of performance outcomes (Dana L. Joseph et al. 2014). Several reasons that may account for the inconsistent results are discussed in this paper: One reason might be that the relationships of IQ, EI and negotiation performance (esp. in business settings) are not, as predominantly supposed, linear positive but follow a non-linear slope. Thus, high levels of emotional intelligence would cause a smaller marginal contribution or even lower performance outcome than medium levels. A second possible reason for inconsistent results may be that important interaction effects have not been controlled for and effects are blurred because variables that are seemingly unrelated show significant relationships when subgroups are inspected. This paper aims to examine possible linear and non-linear direct relationships between IQ, EI and negotiation performance as well as interaction effects with several other variables. Findings show effects of EI on negotiation performance and interaction effects with gender, job experience, and IQ. Higher levels of emotional intelligence lead to better negotiation results, and this is a linear relationship. At lower levels of IQ the effect of EI becomes stronger; as such there might be a compensation effect of deficiencies of IQ with an increase of EI. Job experience reinforces the effect of EI on negotiation outcome. However, this effect is not linear, as with higher experienced people, it decreases at higher levels of EI. Finally, EI explains a larger proportion of the variance of negotiation outcomes with male than with female test persons.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings Cross-Cultural Business Conference 2017
PublisherFH OÖ
ISBN (Print)978-3-9504257-1-0
Publication statusPublished - 2017
EventCross-Cultural Business Conference 2017 - Steyr, Austria
Duration: 17 May 201719 May 2017


ConferenceCross-Cultural Business Conference 2017
Internet address


  • Emotional Intelligence
  • EI
  • Sales Negotiations
  • Intelligence
  • IQ
  • Sales Performance

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