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Question: The Changing Role of Management: Emotions can be viewed as a central part of managerial work. In what ways and how are managers expected to ‘manage’ the emotions of both themselves and others?

17 Mar 2024,10:01 AM


The Changing Role of Management

Assessment Guide

PART 1:  Assessment

Essay Questions

Please choose one of the following topics on which to write an essay of 2000 words.

NB. Although the essay questions are based around specific ‘topics’, you will also need to understand and use discussions and concepts from across the module in order to be able to write a good analysis in response to these questions. For example, you will need to know about managerial work and how it has changed; the management of meaning and identity; and issues of power, politics and managerial control, depending on the question you choose to answer. In other words, one of the things that the essay questions are testing is that you can connect ideas about a specific topic to an understanding of what this means for management.

For each of the essay questions, you will need to read the relevant academic literature and deploy academic concepts in order to develop an analytical argument. The skills which we are assessing are analytical ability; ability to structure a line of argument to respond to the question; knowledge of the relevant academic debates and concepts.


1. Resistance is “a pervasive feature of organizational life reflecting the disorder and irrationality that is also a condition of organizations” (McCabe, Ciuk and Gilbert, 2020). Critically discuss how this view of the pervasiveness of resistance in organisations influences our understandings of the concept of resistance and who can (and does) resist within them. 

2. Emotions can be viewed as a central part of managerial work. In what ways and how are managers expected to ‘manage’ the emotions of both themselves and others?  

3. The design of buildings and office spaces are no longer simply about reflecting an organisation’s image, but are enlisted as an active contemporary managerial tool to govern employees and steer them towards ‘organisational goals’ (Dale, 2005: 666; Dale & Burrell, 2008). Critically discuss how space is used to manage meaning and identity in organisations.


PART 2: Resources for the essay

Remember: you are assessed on what you have learnt on the specific module that the assessment is for, and against the specific learning objectives for that module. Therefore, be careful to refer to sources recommended and concepts discussed on this module. If you are in any doubt, please do consult Huw, Beth or Rachael. You can also check with us that you have understood the assessment question and the module perspective, and that you have drawn upon relevant readings and concepts, by seeking feedback on ONE essay outline plan.



Managing emotions in the workplace has emerged as a crucial aspect of managerial work, reflecting the acknowledgment that emotions significantly influence organizational dynamics and outcomes. This essay will explore how managers are expected to manage both their own emotions and those of others, drawing upon relevant academic literature and concepts to develop an analytical argument.

Firstly, it's essential to recognize the significance of emotional intelligence (EI) in managerial roles. EI encompasses the ability to understand and manage one's emotions and those of others effectively. Managers are expected to possess high levels of EI to navigate complex interpersonal relationships, resolve conflicts, and inspire teams towards shared goals. Scholars such as Goleman (1995) argue that EI is a more critical determinant of success in leadership roles than cognitive intelligence alone.

In managing their own emotions, managers are expected to demonstrate self-awareness and self-regulation. Self-awareness involves recognizing one's emotions and their impact on behavior and decision-making. Managers who are self-aware can better regulate their emotions, preventing them from negatively influencing their judgments or interactions with others (Salovey & Mayer, 1990). This self-regulation extends to managing stress and pressure effectively, maintaining composure in challenging situations, and avoiding impulsive reactions that could harm team morale or productivity.

Furthermore, managers are expected to cultivate a positive emotional climate within their teams or organizations. This involves not only managing their own emotions but also recognizing and responding to the emotions of their subordinates. According to the affective events theory (Weiss & Cropanzano, 1996), workplace events can trigger emotional reactions that influence employee attitudes and behaviors. Effective managers are attuned to these emotional triggers and can intervene to mitigate negative emotions or amplify positive ones.

One way managers manage the emotions of others is through empathetic communication and active listening. By demonstrating empathy, managers validate the experiences and feelings of their employees, fostering trust and rapport (Ashkanasy & Humphrey, 2011). Moreover, managers who are skilled in active listening can uncover underlying concerns or grievances, enabling them to address issues before they escalate.

Another aspect of managing others' emotions is providing emotional support and encouragement. Managers play a crucial role in motivating their teams and helping individuals cope with challenges or setbacks (Lazarus & Folkman, 1984). This involves offering constructive feedback, recognizing achievements, and providing resources or assistance when needed. By acknowledging and validating employees' emotions, managers can foster a supportive work environment where individuals feel valued and empowered.

Additionally, managers must navigate emotionally charged situations such as conflicts or organizational change effectively. Conflict resolution requires emotional intelligence to de-escalate tensions, facilitate constructive dialogue, and find mutually acceptable solutions (Rahim, 2002). Similarly, managing change involves addressing employees' emotional responses to uncertainty or upheaval, providing reassurance, and helping them adapt to new circumstances (Kotter, 1996).

In conclusion, the changing role of management has increasingly emphasized the importance of managing emotions in the workplace. Managers are expected to possess high emotional intelligence to effectively manage both their own emotions and those of others. By cultivating self-awareness, empathy, and effective communication skills, managers can create a positive emotional climate, enhance team performance, and navigate interpersonal challenges more effectively. This essay has drawn upon relevant academic literature and concepts to highlight the multifaceted nature of emotional management in managerial roles.

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