Date: 12 Dec 2013
Ethical Leadership and Reputation: Combined Indirect Effects on Organizational Deviance
Rent the article at a discountRent now
* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.Get Access
The interest in ethical leadership has grown in the past few years, with an emphasis on the mechanisms through which it affects organizational life. However, research on the boundary conditions that limit and/or enhance its effectiveness is still scarce, especially concerning one of the main misconceptions about ethical leadership, its incompatibility with effectiveness (Brown, Organ Dyn 36:140–155, 2007). Thus, the present study (a) examines the relationship between ethical leadership and organizational deviance via affective commitment to the organization, as a reflection of the quality of the employee–organization relationship and (b) proposes this relationship is conditional on the supervisor’s personal reputation for performance (i.e., the moral standards are coupled with work effectiveness). Using a sample of 224 employees and their respective supervisors from 18 organizations, we confirmed our hypotheses (moderated mediation model). Our findings suggest that ethical leadership is positively related to employees’ affective commitment to the organization, particularly when supervisor’s reputation for performance is high, which in turn is associated with decreased organizational deviance. The theoretical and practical implications of these findings conclude the paper.
Aquino, K., Lewis, M. U., & Bradfield, M. (1999). Justice constructs, negative affectivity, and employee deviance: A proposed model and empirical test. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 20, 1073–1091.CrossRef
Aryee, S., Budhwar, P. S., & Chen, Z. X. (2002). Trust as a mediator of the relationship between organizational justice and work outcomes: Test of a social exchange model. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 23, 267–285.CrossRef
Avey, J. B., Palanski, M. E., & Walumbwa, F. O. (2011). When leadership goes unnoticed: The moderating role of follower self-esteem on the relationship between ethical leadership and follower behavior. Journal of Business Ethics, 98, 573–582.CrossRef
Avey, J. B., Wernsing, T. S., & Palanski, M. E. (2012). Exploring the process of ethical leadership: The mediating role of employee voice and psychological ownership. Journal of Business Ethics, 107, 21–34.CrossRef
Bass, B. M., & Avolio, B. J. (1994). Improving organizational effectiveness through transformational leadership. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Becker, T. E. (1992). Foci and bases of commitment: Are they distinctions worth making? Academy of Management Journal, 35, 232–244.CrossRef
Becker, T. E., Billings, R. S., Eveleth, D. M., & Gilbert, N. L. (1996). Foci and bases of employee commitment: Implications for job performance. Academy of Management Journal, 39, 464–482.CrossRef
Bennett, R. J., & Robinson, S. L. (2000). Development of a measure of workplace deviance. Journal of Applied Psychology, 85, 349–360.CrossRef
Bentler, P. M. (1995). EQS structural equations program manual. Encino, CA: Multivariate Software.
Berry, C. M., Ones, D. S., & Sackett, P. R. (2007). Interpersonal deviance, organizational deviance, and their common correlates: A review and meta-analysis. Journal of Applied Psychology, 92, 410–424.CrossRef
Blau, P. M. (1964). Exchange and power in social life. New York: Wiley.
Brown, M. E. (2007). Misconceptions of ethical leadership: How to avoid potential pitfalls. Organizational Dynamics, 36, 140–155.CrossRef
Brown, M. E., & Treviño, L. K. (2006). Ethical leadership: A review and future directions. The Leadership Quarterly, 17, 595–616.CrossRef
Brown, M. E., Treviño, L. K., & Harrison, D. A. (2005). Ethical leadership: A social learning perspective for construct development and testing. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 97, 117–134.CrossRef
Cohen, J., Cohen, P., West, S. G., & Aiken, L. S. (2003). Applied multiple regression/correlation analysis for the behavioral sciences (3rd ed.). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
Colquitt, J. A., & Rodell, J. B. (2011). Justice, trust, and trustworthiness: A longitudinal analysis integrating three theoretical perspectives. Academy of Management Journal, 54, 1183–1206.CrossRef
Colquitt, J. A., Scott, B. A., & LePine, J. A. (2007). Trust, trustworthiness, and trust propensity: A meta-analytic test of their unique relationships with risk taking and job performance. Journal of Applied Psychology, 92, 909–927.CrossRef
Colquitt, J. A., Scott, B. A., Rodell, J. B., Long, D. M., Zapata, C. P., Conlon, D. E., et al. (2013). Justice at the millennium, a decade later: A meta-analytic test of social exchange and affect-based perspectives. Journal of Applied Psychology, 98, 199–236.CrossRef
Coyle-Shapiro, J. A.-M., & Shore, L. M. (2007). The employee–organization relationship: Where do we go from here? Human Resource Management Review, 17, 166–179.CrossRef
Cropanzano, R., & Mitchell, M. S. (2005). Social exchange theory: An interdisciplinary review. Journal of Management, 31, 874–900.CrossRef
Den Hartog, D.N., & De Hoogh, H. B. (2009). Empowering behaviour and leader fairness and integrity: Studying perceptions of ethical leader behaviour from a levels-of-analysis perspective. European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, 18, 199–230.
Den Hartog, D. N., & Belschak, F. D. (2012). Work engagement and Machiavellianism in the ethical leadership process. Journal of Business Ethics, 107, 35–47.CrossRef
Dirks, K. T., & Ferrin, D. L. (2002). Trust in leadership: Meta-analytic findings and implications for research and practice. Journal of Applied Psychology, 87, 611–628.CrossRef
Eisenbeiss, S. A. (2012). Re-thinking ethical leadership: AN interdisciplinary integrative approach. The Leadership Quarterly, 23, 791–808.CrossRef
Eisenberger, R., Huntington, R., Hutchison, S., & Sowa, D. (1986). Perceived organizational support. Journal of Applied Psychology, 71, 500–507.CrossRef
Eisenberger, R., Karagonlar, G., Stinglhamber, F., Neves, P., Becker, T. E., Steiger-Mueller, M., et al. (2010). Leader–member exchange and affective organizational commitment: The contribution of supervisor’s organizational embodiment. Journal of Applied Psychology, 95, 1085–1103.CrossRef
Feldman, D. C. (1984). The development and enforcement of group norms. Academy of Management Review, 9, 47–53.
Ferris, G. R., Blass, F. R., Douglas, C., Kolodinsky, R. W., & Treadway, D. C. (2003). Personal reputation in organizations. In J. Greenberg (Ed.), Organizational behavior: The state of the science (2nd ed., pp. 211–246). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
Gouldner, A. W. (1960). The norm of reciprocity: A preliminary statement. American Sociological Review, 25, 161–178.CrossRef
Hansen, S. D., Alge, B. J., Brown, M. E., Jackson, C. L., & Dunford, B. B. (2013). Ethical leadership: Assessing the value of a multifoci social exchange perspective. Journal of Business Ethics, 115, 435–449.CrossRef
Hochwarter, W. A., Ferris, G. R., Zinko, R., Arnell, B., & James, M. (2007). Reputation as a moderator of the political behavior—Work outcomes relationships: A two-study investigation with convergent results. Journal of Applied Psychology, 92, 567–576.CrossRef
Kacmar, K. M., Bachrach, D. G., Harris, K. J., & Zivnuska, S. (2011). Fostering good citizenship through ethical leadership: Exploring the moderating role of gender and organizational politics. Journal of Applied Psychology, 96, 633–642.CrossRef
Kalshoven, K., & Boon, C. T. (2012). Ethical leadership, employee well-being and helping: The moderating role of human resource management. Journal of Personnel Psychology, 11, 60–68.CrossRef
Kalshoven, K., Den Hartog, D. N., & De Hoogh, A. H. B. (2011). Ethical leadership at work questionnaire: Development and validation of a multidimensional measure. The Leadership Quarterly, 22, 51–69.CrossRef
Keough, D. (2008). The Ten Commandments for business failure. New Delhi: Penguin Books.
Laird, M. D., Perryman, A. A., Hochwarter, W. A., Ferris, G. R., & Zinko, R. (2009). The moderating effects of personal reputation on accountability–strain relationships. Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, 14, 70–83.CrossRef
Levinson, H. (1965). Reciprocation: The relationship between man and organization. Administrative Science Quarterly, 9, 370–390.CrossRef
Mayer, D. M., Aquino, K., Greenbaum, R. L., & Kuenzi, M. (2012). Who displays ethical leadership and why does it matter: An examination of antecedents and consequences of ethical leadership. Academy of Management Journal, 55, 151–171.CrossRef
Mayer, R. C., & Davis, J. H. (1999). The effect of the performance appraisal system on trust for management: A field quasi-experiment. Journal of Applied Psychology, 84, 123–136.CrossRef
Mayer, R. C., Davis, J. H., & Schoorman, F. D. (1995). An integrative model of organizational trust. Academy of Management Review, 20, 709–734.
Mayer, D. M., Kuenzi, M., & Greenbaum, R. (2010). Examining the link between ethical leadership and employee misconduct: The mediating role of ethical climate. Journal of Business Ethics, 95, 7–16.CrossRef
Mayer, D. M., Kuenzi, M., Greenbaum, R., Bardes, & Salvador, R. (2009). How low does ethical leadership flow? Test of a trickle-down model. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 108, 1–13.CrossRef
Meyer, J. P., & Allen, N. J. (1991). A three-component conceptualization of organizational commitment. Human Resource Management Review, 1, 61–89.CrossRef
Meyer, J. P., Allen, N. J., & Smith, C. A. (1993). Commitment to organizations and occupations: Extension and test of a three-component conceptualization. Journal of Applied Psychology, 78, 538–551.CrossRef
Meyer, J. P., Stanley, D. J., Herscovitch, L., & Topolnytsky, L. (2002). Affective, continuance, and normative commitment to the organization: A meta-analysis of antecedents, correlates, and consequences. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 61, 20–52.CrossRef
Neubert, M. J., Carlson, D. S., Kacmar, K. M., Roberts, J. A., & Chonko, L. B. (2009). The virtuous influence of ethical leadership behavior: Evidence from the field. Journal of Business Ethics, 90, 157–170.CrossRef
Newman, A., Kiazad, K., Miao, Q., & Cooper, B. (2013). Examining the cognitive and affective trust-based mechanisms underlying the relationship between ethical leadership and organizational citizenship: A case of head leading the heart? Journal of Business Ethics, published online: 18 July 2013.
Piccolo, R. F., Greenbaum, R., Den Hartog, D. N., & Folger, R. (2010). The relationship between ethical leadership and core job characteristics. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 31, 259–278.CrossRef
Posner, R. (1997). Social norms and the law: An economic approach. American Economic Review, 87, 365–369.
Preacher, K. J., Rucker, D. D., & Hayes, A. F. (2007). Addressing moderated mediation hypotheses: Theory, methods, and prescriptions. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 42, 185–227.CrossRef
Rhoades, L., & Eisenberger, R. (2002). Perceived organizational support: A review of the literature. Journal of Applied Psychology, 87, 698–714.CrossRef
Robinson, S., & Bennett, R. (1995). A typology of deviant workplace behaviors: A multi-dimensional scaling study. Academy of Management Journal, 38, 555–572.CrossRef
Schaubroeck, J. M., Hannah, S. T., Avolio, B. J., Kozlowski, S. W. J., Lord, R. G., Treviño, L. K., et al. (2012). Embedding ethical leadership within and across organization levels. Academy of Management Journal, 55, 1053–1078.CrossRef
Settoon, R. P., Bennett, N., & Liden, R. C. (1996). Social exchange in organizations: Perceived organizational support, leader–member exchange, and employee reciprocity. Journal of Applied Psychology, 81, 219–227.CrossRef
Shin, Y. (2012). CEO ethical leadership, ethical climate, climate strength, and collective organizational citizenship behavior. Journal of Business Ethics, 108, 299–312.CrossRef
Shore, L. M., Porter, L. W., & Zahra, S. A. (2004). Employer-oriented strategic approaches to the employee–organization relationship (EOR). In J. Coyle-Shapiro, L. M. Shore, S. Taylor, & L. E. Tetrick (Eds.), The employment relationship: Examining psychological and contextual perspectives (pp. 133–160). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Siemsen, E., Roth, A., & Oliveira, P. (2009). Common method bias in regression models with linear, quadratic, and interaction effects. Organizational Research Methods, 13, 456–476.CrossRef
Stouten, J., Baillien, E., Van den Broeck, A., Camps, J., Witte, H., & Euwema, M. (2010). Discouraging bullying: The role of ethical leadership and its effects on the work environment. Journal of Business Ethics, 95, 17–27.CrossRef
Stouten, J., van Dijke, M., & De Cremer, D. (2012). Ethical leadership: An overview and future perspectives. Journal of Personnel Psychology, 11, 1–6.CrossRef
Tse, H., Huang, X., & Lam, W. (2013). Why does transformational leadership matter for employee turnover? A multi-foci social exchange perspective. The Leadership Quarterly, 24, 763–776.CrossRef
Walumbwa, F. O., Cropanzano, R., & Hartnell, C. A. (2009). Organizational justice, voluntary learning behavior, and job performance: A test of the mediating effects of identification and leader–member exchange. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 30, 1103–1126.CrossRef
Walumbwa, F. O., Morrison, E. W., & Christensen, A. L. (2012). Ethical leadership and group in-role performance: The mediating roles of group conscientiousness and group voice. The Leadership Quarterly, 23, 953–964.CrossRef
Walumbwa, F. O., & Schaubroeck, J. (2009). Leader personality and employee voice behavior: Mediating roles of ethical leadership and work group psychological safety. Journal of Applied Psychology, 94, 1275–1286.CrossRef
Wayne, S. J., Shore, L. M., & Liden, R. C. (1997). Perceived organizational support and leader–member exchange: a social exchange perspective. Academy of Management Journal, 40, 82–111.CrossRef
Zinko, R., Ferris, G. R., Humphrey, S. E., Meyer, C. J., & Aime, F. (2012). Personal reputation in organizations: Two-study constructive replication and extension of antecedents and consequences. Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, 85, 156–180.CrossRef
- Ethical Leadership and Reputation: Combined Indirect Effects on Organizational Deviance
Journal of Business Ethics
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Springer Netherlands
- Additional Links
- Ethical leadership
- Reputation for performance
- Organizational commitment
- Organizational deviance
- Industry Sectors