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Why and when employees like to speak up more under humble leaders? The roles of personal sense of power and power distance

Why and when employees like to speak up more under humble leaders? The roles of personal sense of power and power distance
Why and when employees like to speak up more under humble leaders? The roles of personal sense of power and power distance
Research investigating the underlying mechanisms and boundary conditions under which leader humility influences employee voice remains underdeveloped. Drawing from approach–inhibition theory of power and leader humility literature, we developed a moderated-mediation model in which personal sense of power (i.e., employees’ ability to influence other individuals such as their leader) was theorized as a unique mechanism underlining why employees feel motivated to speak up under the supervision of humble leaders. Additionally, the cultural value of power distance was proposed to be a relevant boundary condition to influence such relationship. We tested the model using time-lagged supervisor–subordinate matched data. Results of mixed models analyses provided support for our hypotheses confirming that employees’ personal sense of power mediates the relationship between leader humility and employee voice, and such relationship was found to be stronger when employees’ power distance was lower rather than higher.
0167-4544
937-950
Lin, Xiaoshuang
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Chen, Zhen Xiong
4c9a552d-80d6-4c65-b329-5025298d5993
Tse, Herman H.
e79bd87e-0ecc-43f5-829f-a641dfebfe87
Wei, Wu
53d662b0-67f4-463a-be5c-dc9d00cb21af
Ma, Chao
57cb496e-1b20-40c4-87b4-d905fe810618
Lin, Xiaoshuang
d0bbdbac-4a58-459a-9d2d-6c235788095a
Chen, Zhen Xiong
4c9a552d-80d6-4c65-b329-5025298d5993
Tse, Herman H.
e79bd87e-0ecc-43f5-829f-a641dfebfe87
Wei, Wu
53d662b0-67f4-463a-be5c-dc9d00cb21af
Ma, Chao
57cb496e-1b20-40c4-87b4-d905fe810618

Lin, Xiaoshuang, Chen, Zhen Xiong, Tse, Herman H., Wei, Wu and Ma, Chao (2019) Why and when employees like to speak up more under humble leaders? The roles of personal sense of power and power distance. Journal of Business Ethics, 158 (4), 937-950. (doi:10.1007/s10551-017-3704-2).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Research investigating the underlying mechanisms and boundary conditions under which leader humility influences employee voice remains underdeveloped. Drawing from approach–inhibition theory of power and leader humility literature, we developed a moderated-mediation model in which personal sense of power (i.e., employees’ ability to influence other individuals such as their leader) was theorized as a unique mechanism underlining why employees feel motivated to speak up under the supervision of humble leaders. Additionally, the cultural value of power distance was proposed to be a relevant boundary condition to influence such relationship. We tested the model using time-lagged supervisor–subordinate matched data. Results of mixed models analyses provided support for our hypotheses confirming that employees’ personal sense of power mediates the relationship between leader humility and employee voice, and such relationship was found to be stronger when employees’ power distance was lower rather than higher.

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BUSI-D-17-00921R1_Blinded manuscript - Accepted Manuscript
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Accepted/In Press date: 24 September 2017
e-pub ahead of print date: 11 October 2017
Published date: September 2019

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 436015
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/436015
ISSN: 0167-4544
PURE UUID: 79a5e9f9-f736-4520-bff7-5dbe3bf87bb6

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Date deposited: 26 Nov 2019 17:30
Last modified: 27 Apr 2022 06:45

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Contributors

Author: Xiaoshuang Lin
Author: Zhen Xiong Chen
Author: Herman H. Tse
Author: Wu Wei
Author: Chao Ma

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