Contemporary theories place emotions and self-regulation at the centre of a dynamic process of stress. Emotional Intelligence (EQ) is the ability to perceive, understand and reflectively manage one's own emotions and those of others. This study, which was situated within the management population (n = 224) of a large retail organization, investigates the relationship between a measure of EQ, subjective stress, distress, general health, morale, quality of working life and management performance. Significant correlations in the expected direction were found, indicating that managers who scored higher in EQ suffered less subjective stress, experienced better health and well-being, and demonstrated better management performance. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.