How low does ethical leadership flow? Test of a trickle-down model

How low does ethical leadership flow? Test of a trickle-down model This research examines the relationships between top management and supervisory ethical leadership and group-level outcomes (e.g., deviance, OCB) and suggests that ethical leadership flows from one organizational level to the next. Drawing on social learning theory (Bandura, A. (1977). Social learning theory . Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.; Bandura, A. (1986). Social foundations of thought and action . Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.) and social exchange theory (Blau, p. (1964). Exchange and power in social life . New York: John Wiley.), the results support our theoretical model using a sample of 904 employees and 195 managers in 195 departments. We find a direct negative relationship between both top management and supervisory ethical leadership and group-level deviance, and a positive relationship with group-level OCB. Finally, consistent with the proposed trickle-down model, the effects of top management ethical leadership on group-level deviance and OCB are mediated by supervisory ethical leadership. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes Elsevier

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Publisher
Elsevier
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 Elsevier Inc.
ISSN
0749-5978
D.O.I.
10.1016/j.obhdp.2008.04.002
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This research examines the relationships between top management and supervisory ethical leadership and group-level outcomes (e.g., deviance, OCB) and suggests that ethical leadership flows from one organizational level to the next. Drawing on social learning theory (Bandura, A. (1977). Social learning theory . Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.; Bandura, A. (1986). Social foundations of thought and action . Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.) and social exchange theory (Blau, p. (1964). Exchange and power in social life . New York: John Wiley.), the results support our theoretical model using a sample of 904 employees and 195 managers in 195 departments. We find a direct negative relationship between both top management and supervisory ethical leadership and group-level deviance, and a positive relationship with group-level OCB. Finally, consistent with the proposed trickle-down model, the effects of top management ethical leadership on group-level deviance and OCB are mediated by supervisory ethical leadership.

Journal

Organizational Behavior and Human Decision ProcessesElsevier

Published: Jan 1, 2009

References

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