Normalizing difference: Emotional intelligence and diversity management competence in healthcare managers

Adebukola E. Oyewunmi


Purpose: Diversity is synonymous with difference. The diverse workforce presents an array of complexities which necessitates the deployment of specific managerial competencies. Empirical evidences have indicated the role of emotional intelligence in the enhancement of abilities. Thus, this study investigated the relationship between emotional intelligence and diversity management competency amongst healthcare managers in Southwest Nigeria. 

Design: The descriptive survey method was adopted for the study. A total of 360 respondents completed the structured questionnaire titled Emotional Intelligence and Diversity Management Competency Questionnaire (EIDMCQ). Data was analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics such as, Multiple Regression Analyses and Pearson Product Moment Correlation Statistical methods. 

Findings: A positive correlation was found between emotional intelligence and diversity management competency. Gender, ethnicity, and age, did not moderate the relationship between emotional intelligence and diversity management competency. 

Practical Implications: As difference is the reality of modern organizations, it is important to conceptualize it as normal and positive. Emotional intelligence is recommended as a critical tool to normalize the individual perceptions of difference. The re-assessment of the functions of managers must be followed by total commitment to capacity building in emotional intelligence, as well as the re-engineering of organizational and national cultures to promote equal opportunities, inclusion and diversity leveraging. 

Originality/value: This study pioneers research on emotional intelligence and diversity management competency in Nigeria’s public healthcare sector. It conceptualizes diversity management on an individual- managerial level. Practical interventions are provided to enhance the application of specific competencies to optimize a diverse workplace. 


Emotional intelligence, diversity, diversity management, healthcare, leadership

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Licencia de Creative Commons 

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

Intangible Capital, 2004-2022

Online ISSN: 1697-9818; Print ISSN: 2014-3214; DL: B-33375-2004

Publisher: OmniaScience