رهبری اخلاقی و عملکرد در نقش گروه : نقش واسطه ای وجدان گروه و صدای گروه
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|1662||2012||12 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : The Leadership Quarterly, Volume 23, Issue 5, October 2012, Pages 953–964
In this paper, we propose that ethical leadership will lead to higher group in-role performance. Building from and integrating several different research streams, we argue that two key mechanisms for this effect are group conscientiousness (an emergent state) and group voice (a group process). We collected survey data at three points in time from 80 groups of nurses and the groups' leaders. The results provide support for all of our hypotheses. There was a positive relationship between employee ratings of ethical leadership (Time 1) and leader ratings of group in-role performance (Time 3). Group conscientiousness and group voice (Time 2) both partially mediated this relationship. These results contribute to our understanding of leadership and group effectiveness not only by showing that ethical leadership has a positive influence on group in-role performance, but also by identifying specific norms and group-level behaviors that help to account for this relationship.
Groups have become a basic means through which many different types of work are carried out in organizations, in large part because of the potential for groups to generate better quality outcomes than individuals working on their own (Devine et al., 1999, Lawler et al., 2001 and Salas et al., 2009). As the use of groups has increased in organizations, considerable research has focused on the role of leadership in fostering group performance (Kozlowski and Bell, 2003, Mathieu et al., 2008 and Morgeson et al., 2010). This research has highlighted both the instrumental value of leadership (e.g., transactional leaders who clarify tasks; Hoyt and Blascovich, 2003 and Bass et al., 2003) and the inspirational value of leadership (e.g., transformational leaders who communicate an inspiring vision; Bass et al., 2003, Schaubroeck et al., 2007 and Walumbwa et al., 2008). Less emphasized, however, is how the behaviors associated with ethical leadership might impact group in-role performance. Although philosophers have long considered the ethical dimension of leadership, the organizational literature, until relatively recently, has given it scant attention. In an important contribution to that literature, Brown, Treviño, and Harrison (2005) offered a social learning model of ethical leadership. Unlike the normative perspective offered by philosophers (which tends to emphasize how leaders “ought to” behave), this model offers a descriptive perspective, focused on describing and characterizing ethical leadership in the workplace (how ethical leaders “do” behave) and on identifying its antecedents and consequences. Brown et al. (2005) defined ethical leadership as “the demonstration of normatively appropriate conduct through personal actions and interpersonal relationships, and the promotion of such conduct to followers through two-way communication, reinforcement and decision making” (p. 120). Building from Brown and colleagues (Brown and Treviño, 2006 and Brown et al., 2005), this is the conceptualization that we adopt in this paper. Hence, when we use the term “ethical leadership” from this point forward, we are referring to ethical leadership as conceptualized by Brown and colleagues and in several recent papers in the organizational literature that have built upon that work (e.g., Kacmar et al., 2011, Mayer et al., 2012, Mayer et al., 2009, Piccolo et al., 2010, Walumbwa and Schaubroeck, 2009 and Walumbwa et al., 2011). Ethical leadership has been argued to be important for organizations because of its effects on the behavior and performance of individual employees (Brown et al., 2005, De Hoogh and Den Hartog, 2008 and Piccolo et al., 2010) and on organizational level outcomes such as the reduction of business costs (Thomas, Schermerhorn, & Dienhart, 2004). However, empirical examination of how ethical leadership affects the performance of work groups remains scarce. We believe that an examination of this relationship could help to expand our understanding of ethical leadership in organizational contexts. In addition to affecting individual‐level behavior, we argue that ethical leadership may facilitate collective performance by providing a foundation for the development of productive group norms and behaviors that, over time, become self-reinforcing (Cropanzano & Walumbwa, 2010). Our work is aimed at expanding not just the current understanding of ethical leadership, but also the current understanding of group in-role performance. Whereas the existing literature on groups provides valuable frameworks for understanding group effectiveness (e.g., Ilgen et al., 2005 and Marks et al., 2001), researchers have not fully investigated when and how different group processes, shared cognitions, and behaviors predict performance, nor how leadership shapes those processes, cognitions, and behaviors. Indeed, Mathieu et al. (2008) urged researchers to devote more attention to the specific types of group processes that may emerge in different group contexts. They also urged researchers to work toward providing a fuller understanding of how specific group characteristics and dynamics relate to outcomes such as performance. In light of the above, the purpose of this study is to build and test a theory that examines not just the connection between ethical leadership and group in-role performance, but also two of the key mechanisms that we believe help account for this connection. Our central argument is that ethical leaders promote norms and behaviors within workgroups that enable those groups to perform more effectively. Specifically, we argue that ethical leadership affects performance by helping to create norms and behaviors that encourage high levels of collective conscientiousness and by encouraging groups to be actively involved in the improvement of work practices through voice behavior. In building a model linking ethical leadership and group in-role performance, we draw on the distinction made by Marks et al. (2001) between group processes and emergent states. Group processes are team behavioral activities and interactions, whereas emergent states reflect collective-level cognitions, attitudes, and motivations (Marks et al., 2001). Similar to other work that has focused on specific group processes and states in examining the effect of leadership on teams (e.g., Srivastava, Bartol, & Locke, 2006), we focus on group conscientiousness (emergent state) and group voice (group process) as key explanatory mechanisms linking ethical leadership to group in-role performance. These are not the only possible explanatory mechanisms, but they are ones that we believe play a particularly important role in explaining the relationship between ethical leadership and group in-role performance. Drawing from Hofmann and Jones (2005), we define group conscientiousness as group habits and norms supporting dependability, effort, and diligence. We define group voice as the extent to which members of a workgroup make constructive suggestions for improvement, share new ideas, and speak up about problems or potential problems (Frazier & Bowler, 2009). In arguing that group conscientiousness and group voice are key mechanisms explaining the effect of ethical leadership on group in-role performance and by providing empirical support for these arguments, we hope to make several important theoretical and empirical contributions. First, we hope to add to the growing body of research showing that ethical leadership affects not just individual-level behavior and ethical conduct (Avey et al., 2011, Kacmar et al., 2011, Mayer et al., 2012 and Piccolo et al., 2010), but also important group-level outcomes (Detert et al., 2007, Mayer et al., 2009, Mayer et al., 2012 and Schaubroeck et al., in press). Second, our study sheds light on how it is that ethical leaders help shape group in-role performance. Kozlowski and Bell (2003, p. 358) noted that “relatively neglected is what leaders should actually be doing to enhance team effectiveness.” By examining the mediating role of two potential intervening variables, we extend previous research by showing underlying mechanisms that are responsible for the effects of ethical leadership, which is important because leadership is a complex and dynamic process (Barling et al., 2010 and Zaccaro and Klimoski, 2002). Third, our study contributes to the literature on employee voice behavior (e.g., LePine & Van Dyne, 1998). A key assumption in the voice literature is that voice helps groups and organizations perform more effectively, yet this assumption has received little empirical attention. In addition, we contribute to recent research on group conscientiousness (e.g., Hofmann & Jones, 2005), providing additional evidence that this is a robust group-level construct with meaningful outcomes.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
This study has some limitations that should be noted. First, the data were collected from a single organization and profession, and from a sample that was primarily female, which raises questions about generalizability. We therefore encourage efforts to replicate our findings in other organizational contexts and in samples that are more diverse with respect to both profession and gender. A second limitation is that, given constraints on survey length, we were not able to measure potentially important control variables, such as group cohesion or efficacy. In addition, even though we controlled for idealized influence leadership, we did not measure other forms of leadership that likely overlap with ethical leadership. This is true of other studies of ethical leadership as well (e.g., Kacmar et al., 2011, Mayer et al., 2009, Piccolo et al., 2010 and Walumbwa and Schaubroeck, 2009). Nonetheless, it would be valuable for future studies to include additional forms of leadership to allow for a stronger demonstration of the unique effects of ethical leadership. Moreover, as pointed out by an anonymous reviewer, ethical leadership and conscientiousness potentially overlap. In extending our current findings and moving research on ethical leadership forward, future research should also control for subordinates’ perceived conscientiousness of the leader in order to distinguish the effect of being perceived as an ethical leader from the effect of being perceived as a conscientious leader. A third potential limitation relates to how we operationalized group performance. Given the importance of reliable in-role performance for organizations, we decided to focus on how ethical leadership affects this outcome. We also felt that this would complement prior work that has demonstrated a relationship between ethical leadership and extra-role behavior (Avey et al., 2011, Mayer et al., 2009 and Mayer et al., 2012). We believe, however, that it would be fruitful for future studies to examine the effects of ethical leadership on broader and more multi-dimensional measures of performance. As well, it would be valuable to examine the relationship between ethical leadership and objective measures of group performance, which we did not have in this study. Another potential weakness of this study is that ethical leadership and the two mediators were measured from the same source (i.e., employees). Although we attempted to mitigate this bias by collecting data at different points in time (i.e., ethical leadership at Time 1 and the two mediators at Time 2), we cannot entirely rule out response bias. Future research should consider collecting data from multiple sources. Additionally, because this is a cross-sectional design, we cannot rule out the possibility of reverse causality. For example, it is possible that higher group performance could reinforce norms around conscientiousness and/or lead to more voice behavior. Future studies should try to address this possibility by assessing performance, voice, and conscientiousness at multiple points in time. In conclusion, our study highlights the importance of ethical leadership behavior for group in-role performance. It also helps to explain how and why this relationship occurs, by identifying the role of two key mediators, group conscientiousness and group voice. We hope the results of this study serve as an impetus for future research relating ethical leadership to group‐level processes and outcomes, so that we may more fully appreciate the value that this form of leadership brings to organizations.