رهبری تحول گرا در خرید: یک مطالعه در عرصه کارکنان
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|19469||2007||20 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : The Leadership Quarterly, Volume 18, Issue 1, February 2007, Pages 49–68
This field study of employees involved in a major acquisition integration addressed the relationships that leadership and climate had with subordinate acquisition acceptance, performance, and job satisfaction in an uncertain environment. Transformational leadership was positively related to acquisition acceptance, supervisor-rated performance, and job satisfaction (p < .01). Transformational leaders also impacted subordinate outcomes through the perceived climate they created for goal clarity and support for creative thinking. Both goal clarity and support for creative thinking partially mediated the relationship between transformational leadership and job satisfaction (p < .01; N = 447). Goal clarity did not mediate the relationship between transformational leadership and performance, but was positively related to performance (p < .05; N = 344). Support for creative thinking fully mediated the relationship between transformational leadership and acquisition acceptance (p < .01; N = 432). Implications for future research and for managers engaged in acquisition integrations are discussed.
Successfully managing employee attitudes and performance during an acquisition integration is vital because employees can choose to: leave the firm or remain, hold onto critical operational knowledge or share it, and raise their productivity level or become distracted by disruptions (Buono and Bowditch, 1989, Marks and Mirvis, 1992 and Ranft and Lord, 2000). Acquisition integrations call upon employees to accelerate their productivity to manage routine job responsibilities, plus take on the additional tasks necessary to transition from two organizations to one. Yet resistance to changes in routines and uncertainty about responsibilities can reduce job performance at a critical time. Cultural changes and degradation of status can cause social identity issues that lead to frustration and anger about the acquisition and reduced job satisfaction (Hambrick and Cannella, 1993 and Hogg and Terry, 2000). Unless managed successfully, these employee-level outcomes of an acquisition can manifest themselves at the firm level as an exodus of talent, tardiness, absenteeism, lower productivity, reduced customer satisfaction, less innovation, and ultimately reduced economic benefits from the acquisition (Buono and Bowditch, 1989, Ernst and Vitt, 2000, Hambrick and Cannella, 1993, Nygaard and Dahlstrom, 2002 and Schweiger and DeNisi, 1991). Bass (1985) set out a model of situational antecedents for transformational leadership and reiterated the importance of contextual antecedents in later work (Bass, 1998 and Bass et al., 2003). In this model, transformational leadership is particularly effective in environments characterized by change, uncertainty, and distress, such as acquisition integrations (Bass, 1998, House and Aditya, 1997, Waldman et al., 2001 and Yukl and Howell, 1999). Transformational leaders are essentially change agents; they visualize a future different than the status quo and inspire subordinates to work with them to achieve that new future (Vera & Crossan, 2004). In an acquisition integration, transformational leadership behaviors play a critical role in helping subordinates to accept that a bright future lies in an integration of the two organizations. By inspiring employees to work toward that future, moreover, they motivate employees to maintain their job satisfaction and performance despite the uncertainty and anxiety of the integration process. Our study makes an important empirical contribution to the transformational leadership literature because few studies have been conducted outside of stable environments to investigate the effects of transformational leaders on employees during organizational change (Bass, Avolio, Jung & Berson, 2003). The present study addresses this gap by answering this research question: In an acquisition integration, does transformational leadership have a beneficial relationship with employee acquisition acceptance, performance, and job satisfaction? Another gap in the transformational leadership literature is that it offers few insights into the mechanisms by which these effects take place (House and Aditya, 1997 and Yukl, 2002). Some recent research has focused on understanding better how transformational leaders affect subordinate outcomes by looking at mediating mechanisms (Avolio et al., 2004, Jung and Avolio, 2000, MacKensie et al., 2001, Pillai et al., 1999 and Zhu et al., 2005). In one study, transformational leaders indirectly affected subordinate safety behaviors through the type of climate they created (Barling, Loughlin, & Kelloway, 2002). We extend this work on climate as a mediating mechanism between transformational leadership and employee outcomes by analyzing the indirect use of transformational leadership behaviors during periods of rapid change to create climates emphasizing goal clarity and support for creative thinking. These climates have the potential to further mitigate the effects of uncertainty and change during acquisition integrations. By creating a climate emphasizing goal clarity, transformational leaders can alleviate ambiguity and thereby help employees to achieve their objectives. Transformational leaders also may promote a climate of creativity, thereby opening employees' minds to new ways of thinking and enabling them to better understand the need for change. Hence, our second research question is: Does transformational leadership also have an indirect relationship with employee acquisition acceptance, performance, and job satisfaction through the mediating mechanism of creating a climate that individuals perceive as providing goal clarity and supporting creative thinking?
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
This study makes three important contributions to the transformational leadership literature with respect to context, outcome variables, and process understanding. First, we provide much needed insight into the relationships between transformational leadership behaviors and employee attitudes and performance in the demanding context of an acquisition integration. We provide qualitative evidence supporting the prevailing employee perceptions of an acquisition integration context as a disruptive change fraught with uncertainty. Numerous case studies have documented the challenges associated with the human element of integrating two organizations after an acquisition (see Buono & Bowditch, 1989), yet the applicability of transformational leadership theory has not been thoroughly tested in this environment (Bass et al., 2003). Our study offers an empirically supported, theoretical model for relationships among transformational leadership, climate, employee attitudes, and performance during an acquisition integration, a context representative of organizational change and uncertainty. Most transformational leadership studies have focused on outcomes related to the leader (Lowe et al., 1996). In an acquisition, however, uncertainty and change exert downward pressure on subordinate attitudes and performance, ultimately resulting in negative outcomes at the firm level, such as loss of key talent and lower productivity (Ernst and Vitt, 2000 and Hambrick and Cannella, 1993). A second contribution of this study is its focus on the relationship between transformational leadership and subordinate outcomes. Our results demonstrate positive relationships between transformational leadership and acquisition acceptance, job satisfaction, and performance. Even after controlling for subordinate attitude, transformational leadership behaviors explained 1% of the variance in acceptance, 6% of the variance in performance, and 10% of the variance in satisfaction. Third, we provide fresh insight into the specific processes by which transformational leadership affects individual employees by demonstrating that transformational leaders can influence subordinate outcomes both directly and indirectly through the mediating effects of the internal climate they create. Transformational leadership behaviors are thought to affect employees by motivating them (Shamir et al., 1993). We introduce two new mediating variables to the transformational leadership literature, a climate emphasizing goal clarity and a creative climate supportive of new ways of doing things. Goal setting has been recognized as a powerful motivator for performance (Latham & Locke, 1991), and a creative climate provides encouragement for change and renewal (Isaksen & Lauer, 2002). We found that transformational leadership behaviors were positively related to climates with both goal setting and support for creative thinking. Transformational leadership had a positive relationship with acquisition acceptance that was fully mediated by a climate supporting new ways of thinking. Climate also provided additional explanatory power. The mediating role of climate may help to explain why transformational leadership was positively related to acquisition acceptance only for some subgroups in a previous study (Covin et al., 1997). Our findings supported our expectation that transformational leaders would enable subordinates to understand the benefits of the business case for change by creating a climate that encourages new ideas and new ways to perform work. Both transformational leadership and a climate of goal clarity were positively related to subordinate performance. A climate for goal clarity added explanatory power; however, it did not mediate the relationship between transformational leadership and this outcome, suggesting that transformational leaders influence subordinate performance directly. These results indicate that the distal vision for the future created by transformational leaders motivates subordinates to perform better in a changing environment, even in the absence of clear, proximate goals. The partial mediation results for job satisfaction suggest that transformational leadership has both direct and indirect (through climate) relationships with job satisfaction. This result provides support for our reasoning that transformational leaders indirectly influence job satisfaction by creating a climate of goal clarity and by creating a climate receptive to new ideas. These results suggest that in the uncertain, changing context of an `acquisition integration, subordinate job satisfaction responds to the skills of transformational leaders of inspiring and motivating employees. Part of that effect, however, relies upon complementing the leader's vision with clear team goals and upon encouraging new ways of thinking. These findings extend recent work in the literature to identify mediating mechanisms for the influence of transformational leadership (Avolio et al., 2004, Jung and Avolio, 2000, MacKensie et al., 2001, Pillai et al., 1999 and Zhu et al., 2005). 5.1. Implications for managerial practice Acquisitions are critical components of strategic renewal, but they pose significant challenges to leadership effectiveness. Our findings suggest that engaging in transformational leadership behaviors is an effective strategy to help managers meet these challenges. Transformational leadership behaviors, such as idealized influence, inspirational motivation, individualized consideration, and intellectual stimulation, were positively related to greater employee acceptance of the benefits of the acquisition, better performance, and increased job satisfaction. Our analysis of the mediating role of climate provides prescriptive insights for managers into a specific climate they can create to augment the highest priority subordinate outcomes. For example, leaders in a merged firm with a cash flow situation that demands minimal productivity loss during the integration and rapid synergy capture should focus on reducing uncertainty by emphasizing goal clarification. Further, leaders should consider using transformational leadership behaviors to motivate employees to expend the extra effort needed to maintain productivity while accomplishing integration tasks. Leaders in an acquisition of knowledge-intensive firms, such as high-technology or consulting firms, may want to focus initially on maintaining job satisfaction and acquisition acceptance to reduce key personnel losses. In this situation, leaders should engage in transformational behaviors, such as providing individualized attention to support employees during the change and using their skills at intellectual stimulation to help employees understand the business case for the acquisition. At the same time, leaders should develop a climate that encourages new ways of thinking to help employees embrace change. 5.2. Limitations The external validity of this study was limited by the fact that it was conducted within a single firm where there could be unique factors that affected the mediating processes. We strove to minimize this limitation and increase generalizability by including multiple locations and a wide range of tasks in the sampling frame. Although fairly representative of the majority of employees in the host firm, our sampling frame for this study did not include hourly-paid, union-represented employees working in manufacturing facilities. As a result, extending our conclusions to this demographic group should be done cautiously. The cross-sectional nature of this study creates a threat to internal validity of ambiguous temporal precedence, which prevents us from asserting causation (Shadish, Cook & Campbell, 2002). The fact that multiple respondents shared the same supervisor creates the potential for a violation of the regression assumption of independence. The sample encompassed 103 unique work teams, with an average of 4 respondents from each work team. 5.3. Implications for future research Our work focused on how leaders can alleviate the negative effects on employees of the implications of an acquisition integration: uncertainty and change. Acquisition researchers have identified mistrust of management as an additional condition that reduces organizational effectiveness in acquisitions (Nikandrou, Papalexandris, & Bourantas, 2000). Leadership researchers have recently begun looking at trust as a mediating variable. In a stable environment, Jung & Avolio (2000) found that trust mediated the relationship between transformational leadership and performance quality, while MacKensie et al. (2001) found that trust mediated the relationship between transformational leadership and organizational citizenship, but not performance. Together these results suggest that our acquisition model might gain explanatory power by including trust in management as an additional mediator. Building upon the richness of insight into the sources of employee uncertainty and perceptions of disruptive change provided by our qualitative data, future acquisition integration research should incorporate quantitative measures of these variables. Such a study could bolster the theoretical argument as to why creating a climate of emphasizing goal clarity and supporting new ways of thinking is so effective in producing positive employee outcomes during acquisition integration. A multi-industry project would also be a valuable extension of this work to evaluate whether industry specific variables, such as employee perceptions of external market and/or technological uncertainty, impact the importance of transformational leadership during acquisition integrations. Such research, however, would need to control for the amount of time from when each acquisition took place and the degree of integration that occurred. 5.4. Conclusion This study meets an important need in the leadership literature with the finding that transformational leadership is related to better subordinate performance, job satisfaction, and acquisition acceptance in the major organizational change context of an acquisition integration. Our study sheds some light, furthermore, on the dual role of transformational leaders in influencing subordinates both directly and indirectly through the type of climate leaders can create. Because the mediating role of climate varies among the subordinate outcomes we studied, we were able to offer practical insights for managers for how best to achieve their highest priority outcomes for subordinates. The two new mediating variables we introduced to the transformational leadership literature, climates of goal clarity and support for creative thinking, suggest potentially fruitful new avenues of research into means for helping employees to cope with change and alleviating their uncertainty during organizational change.