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A social-signal processing approach to leadership: specific behaviors characterize considerate leaders.


Meyer, Bertolt; Jonas, Klaus; Feese, Sebastian; Tröster, Gerhard; Schermuly, Carsten C; Arnrich, Bert (2012). A social-signal processing approach to leadership: specific behaviors characterize considerate leaders. In: Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, Boston, MA, 3 August 2012 - 2012.

Abstract

Combining leadership research with findings from small group research and clinical psychology, we propose that three specific observable interaction behaviors of leaders are partially responsible for the positive effects of considerate leadership on team performance: Question asking, active listening, and behavioral mimicry, with the latter serving as a marker for rapport and empathy. In a laboratory experiment involving 55 three- person student groups who worked on a simulated personnel- selection task, we manipulated the leader’s leadership style as being either considerate or inconsiderate. The number of questions asked by the leader in the subsequent team interaction was obtained through behavioral coding, and active listening and behavioral mimicry were measured through social signal processing (voice analysis and motion tracking). In partial support of the hypotheses, leaders’ question asking and their active listening fully mediated the effect of the leadership manipulation on team performance. Leaders’ behavioral mimicry predicted subordinates’ ratings of the leader on the individualized consideration subscale and on the transformational leadership dimension of the MLQ questionnaire. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

Abstract

Combining leadership research with findings from small group research and clinical psychology, we propose that three specific observable interaction behaviors of leaders are partially responsible for the positive effects of considerate leadership on team performance: Question asking, active listening, and behavioral mimicry, with the latter serving as a marker for rapport and empathy. In a laboratory experiment involving 55 three- person student groups who worked on a simulated personnel- selection task, we manipulated the leader’s leadership style as being either considerate or inconsiderate. The number of questions asked by the leader in the subsequent team interaction was obtained through behavioral coding, and active listening and behavioral mimicry were measured through social signal processing (voice analysis and motion tracking). In partial support of the hypotheses, leaders’ question asking and their active listening fully mediated the effect of the leadership manipulation on team performance. Leaders’ behavioral mimicry predicted subordinates’ ratings of the leader on the individualized consideration subscale and on the transformational leadership dimension of the MLQ questionnaire. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper), refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Language:English
Event End Date:2012
Deposited On:06 Nov 2012 14:42
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 16:03

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