Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Applying trait and situational leadership approaches to assess theoretical antecedents of managers' work-life supportive behaviors
by Epstein, Sue A., Ph.D., State University of New York at Albany, 2010, 141; 3427008
Abstract (Summary)

Managers’ work-life supportive behaviors positively impact the usage of work-life programs, help reduce work-life conflict, and improve additional organizational and individual outcomes (e.g., job satisfaction, turnover intentions) (Foley, Linnehan, Greenhaus, & Weer, 2006). These behaviors include helping their subordinates rearrange their work schedules and encouraging subordinates’ use of organizational work-life policies (e.g., flextime, job sharing, leave programs) (Mesmer-Magnus & Viswesvaran, 2006). While the benefits of such targeted leadership have been well studied, the predictors of managerial work-life supportive behaviors have received little attention. In this research, the trait and situational approaches to effective leadership are used as the basis for a theoretical model in which two traits and five situational variables are proposed as antecedents of managerial work-life supportive behaviors. Managers’ empathetic personality and personal work-life philosophy are the two trait theoretical antecedents and the five situational antecedents are the organizations’ work-life culture, leader-subordinate exchange quality, organizational centralization of authority, organizational formality, and employees’ work-to-life conflict. To test this model, survey data from managers and their subordinates from a convenience sample of five diverse organizations were collected. Results support a hybrid leadership approach of both trait and situational factors as important predictors of managers’ work-life supportive behaviors. One trait-based antecedent, the degree to which a manager is viewed as having an empathetic personality, was significantly related to managers’ work-life supportive behaviors. The second key predictor, the situational antecedent of a manager’s ratings of leader-subordinate exchange quality, also had a positive relationship with managers’ work-life supportive behaviors. The third antecedent, the situational variable of the subordinate’s work-life conflict, had a negative relationship with managers’ work-life supportive behaviors. Implications for future research and for practitioners are discussed.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Marler, Janet H.
Commitee: Golden, Timothy D., Taber, Thomas D.
School: State University of New York at Albany
Department: Organizational Studies
School Location: United States -- New York
Source: DAI-A 71/12, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Management
Keywords: Leadership, Supportive behaviors, Work-life
Publication Number: 3427008
ISBN: 978-1-124-29628-9
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