The paper 'Organisational Behavior Issues' is a great example of a Management Assignment. Emotional labor can be defined as the process by which employees are expected to control their emotions in line with guidelines and rules that are defined within an organization. For instance, in a hospital setting, nurses are expected to behave in a certain way that is appropriate for the nursing profession and for the organization in which they work. What this implies is that if a person works as a nurse, he or she is expected not to show his or her own behavior in the workplace but to assume the behavior that is expected of a nurse.
This concept was clearly captured in Hochschild’ s (1983) definition of emotional labor, which implied that emotional labor involves the suppression or induction of feelings so as to maintain an outward appearance that reflects in others a feeling of being cared for and protected. For instance, nurses are expected to present themselves as caring people to reassure patients of the care they are giving them. In this sense, nurses suppress their own feelings in order to portray themselves as people who are caring and concerned about the needs and feelings of the patients that they are attending to. Emotional labor applies to different types of jobs, which like nursing, share three types of attributes.
The first attribute is that such jobs involve voice or face-to-face contact with the public. For instance, nurses and flight attendants are directly in contact with the people they are offering their services to. Secondly, jobs in which emotional labor applies to require the worker to elicit an emotional state in another person.
For instance, a flight attendant has to smile to make travelers happy while a nurse has to use reassuring words to give patients hope of recovery. Thirdly, jobs that involve emotional labor enable employers some level of control over employees. This is because the employees are required to behave in a certain way as required by their employer. Emotional intelligence on the other hand refers to the ability of people to recognize their own as well as other individuals’ emotions, to make a distinction between different feelings and mark them appropriately, and to make use of emotional information to direct thoughts and behavior.
Emotional intelligence enables people to know how they feel, to manage their emotions well as impulses, to motivate themselves and to persist in their jobs, to empathize with others, and to handle the emotions of others. There is a notable connection between emotional labor and emotional intelligence. This lies in the notion that emotional intelligence influences the performance of tasks over and above the general personality and mental ability factors. In particular, jobs that require high emotional labor need a high level of emotional intelligence in the individuals that perform them.
During a change process in an organization, for instance, the change can be enabled by paying keen attention to emotions. The same applies to a hospital setting where doctors and nurses have to make critical decisions within a short time to save a patient’ s life. The high emotional labor involved requires emotionally intelligent individuals who are able to recognize and make use of their own and others’ emotional conditions to solve the problem at hand.