Lopes, P. N., Brackett, M. A., Nezlek, J. B., Schütz, A., Sellin, I., & Salovey, P. (2004). Emotional intelligence and social interaction. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 30, 1018-1034.

Two studies found positive relationships between the ability to manage emotions and the quality of social interactions, supporting the predictive and incremental validity of an ability measure of emotional intelligence, the MSCEIT (Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test, 2002). In a sample of 118 American college students (Study 1), higher scores on the managing emotions subscale of the MSCEIT were positively related to the quality of interactions with friends, evaluated separately by participants and two friends. In a diary study of social interaction with 103 German college students (Study 2), managing emotions scores were positively related to the perceived quality of interactions with opposite sex individuals. Scores on this subscale were also positively related to perceived success in impression management in social interactions with individuals of the opposite sex. In both studies, the main findings remained statistically significant after controlling for Big Five personality traits.