Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 35, Issue 2, pp 75–96 | Cite as

Perceived Integrity of Transformational Leaders in Organisational Settings

  • Ken W. Parry
  • Sarah B. Proctor-Thomson


The ethical nature of transformational leadership has been hotly debated. This debate is demonstrated in the range of descriptors that have been used to label transformational leaders including narcissistic, manipulative, and self-centred, but also ethical, just and effective. Therefore, the purpose of the present research was to address this issue directly by assessing the statistical relationship between perceived leader integrity and transformational leadership using the Perceived Leader Integrity Scale (PLIS) and the Multi-Factor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ). In a national sample of 1354 managers a moderate to strong positive relationship was found between perceived integrity and the demonstration of transformational leadership behaviours. A similar relationship was found between perceived integrity and developmental exchange leadership. A systematic leniency bias was identified when respondents rated subordinates vis-à-vis peer ratings. In support of previous findings, perceived integrity was also found to correlate positively with leader and organisational effectiveness measures.

effectiveness ethics integrity leadership transformational transactional unethical 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ken W. Parry
    • 1
  • Sarah B. Proctor-Thomson
    • 1
  1. 1.The Centre for the Study of LeadershipVictoria University of WellingtonWellingtonNew Zealand

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