The Role of Emotional Intelligence in Environmental Scanning Behavior: A Cross-Cultural Study

By Rahim, M. Afzalur; Marvel, Matthew R. | Academy of Strategic Management Journal, July 2011 | Go to article overview

The Role of Emotional Intelligence in Environmental Scanning Behavior: A Cross-Cultural Study


Rahim, M. Afzalur, Marvel, Matthew R., Academy of Strategic Management Journal


INTRODUCTION

In the rapidly changing global economy, scanning for environmental change is vital to organizational performance and viability. Changes in the environment result in new opportunities for wealth creation that decision makers use in strategy formulation and implementation. Environmental changes increase information processing needs within organizations because managers must detect and interpret problem areas, identify opportunities, and implement strategic adaptations (Hambrick, 1982; Culnan, 1983; Tushman, 1977). A strategic advantage rests upon management's ability to collect pertinent information and act on signals that others miss.

Executives are responsible for bringing together specialized information from various departments and functions (Daft, Sormunen, and Parks, 1988). Scanning involves formal and informal sources of information often gained through ad hoc human sources (Thomas, 1980; Hambrick, 1982). Most previous research on scanning has relied on self-report estimates of the frequency of one's search and the source of the information. While this approach has been useful it does not take into account the intense social aspect of effective scanning behavior within firms. Decision makers must work among others to detect, communicate, and politicize information that enters the organization (Mintzberg, 1973).

The ability to effectively scan the environment has been linked to new venture creation (Fiet, 2007), reduced strategic uncertainty (Elenkov, 1997), and improved firm performance (Daft et al., 1988). Although these studies exemplify the positive outcomes associated with environmental scanning there is little understanding of how decision makers work among others to effectively scan information for opportunities and threats. If competitors have unequal abilities to bring about or transfer new information, then they differ in their abilities to formulate cogent responses to environmental changes (Hambrick, 1982). If unequal competencies exist in collecting or socializing information, then differences accompanying performance are attributable to the ability to implement a response, that is, to change or modify their strategy.

Research shows the transfer of key information is hindered when an arduous relationship exists between the source and the recipient (Szulanski, 1996). We argue a person's ability to exercise emotional intelligence (EQ) influences their ability to work across departments or functions to effectively scan the environment for new opportunities or threats within the social context of established firms. EQ has increasingly been linked to work outcomes and improved task performance (Lam and Kirby, 2002; Carmeli and Josman; 2006). However, little empirical work has examined emotion within the context of strategic management representing a gap in the literature. The present study is designed to make a contribution to the literature by drawing on existing EQ theory to examine how the dimensions of empathy and social skills explain management's ability to successfully scan the environment across different national cultures.

Not only must executives effectively bring together and make sense of new information but they must do so in an increasingly global economy. Such challenges have stimulated a strong interest in research that relates cross-cultural differences to these desired behaviors (Shane, Venkataraman and MacMillan, 1995). Since environmental scanning deals with the organization-environment interface, performance of the scanning function would be expected to differ for management across national cultures. Kim and Lim (1988) suggested further development of the field of strategic management through investigations of external validity of theories by testing them under different economic and cultural conditions. For example, national culture has been found to have effects on managerial styles and behaviors (Erez and Earley, 1993), with some cultures producing more innovation than others (Baumol, 1990). …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

The Role of Emotional Intelligence in Environmental Scanning Behavior: A Cross-Cultural Study
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.