Emotionally Intelligent Leadership: An Integrative, Process-Oriented Theory of Student Leadership

Emotionally intelligent leadership (EIL) theory combines relevant models, theories, and research in the areas of emotional intelligence (EI) and leadership. With an intentional focus on context, self and others, emotionally intelligent leaders facilitate the attainment of desired outcomes. The 21 capacities described by the theory equip individuals with the knowledge, skills, abilities, and other characteristics to achieve desired results. The purpose of this article is to propose an integrative, process-oriented EIL theory to provide a framework for conceptualizing and integrating future research and practice. The authors review and organize research and theory in emotional intelligence and leadership within the context of higher education, introduce the EIL model, and provide suggestions for future research. The article concludes with practical implications for leadership development in the context of higher education.