Management expert tells Toronto press why emotions matter

30 Jan 2012
Neal Ashkanasy

Neal Ashkanasy, Professor of Management at UQ Business School and one of the world’s leading researchers in organisational behaviour, is featured in a live interview on one of Canada’s leading news sites.

Professor Ashkanasy was interviewed about the role of emotions in the workplace by fellow management expert Karl Moore for his Talking Management column in the Toronto Globe and Mail.

Professor Ashkanasy, who entered academic life after an 18-year career in engineering and management, is known internationally for his work and was partly responsible for the “affective revolution", an acknowledgement within the social sciences field that human behaviour cannot be properly understood without taking account of the role of motives, attitudes, moods, and emotions.

The interview, which was recorded at a conference in Texas, focuses on why managers should not try to ignore their own and other people’s emotions but instead should be aware of them and take them into account in making decisions.

Professor Ashkanasy explains: “Just by becoming aware that emotions play a role a manager can be much more effective. If a manager knows for instance that someone who is in a negative mood state becomes much more analytical, is trying to solve problems and trying to deal with things on a point-by-point basis, that type of thinking is different from a manager who is in a positive emotional state and therefore is going to be receptive to new ideas and thinking more broadly.”

Read the transcript.