When Do Ethical Leaders Become Less Effective? The Moderating Role of Perceived Leader Ethical Conviction on Employee Discretionary Reactions to Ethical Leadership

Mayowa T. Babalola, Jeroen Stouten, Jeroen Camps, Martin Euwema

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Drawing from the group engagement model and the moral conviction literature, we propose that perceived leader ethical conviction moderates the relationship between ethical leadership and employee OCB as well as deviance. In a field study of employees from various industries and a scenario-based experiment, we revealed that both the positive relation between ethical leadership and employee OCB and the negative relation between ethical leadership and employee deviance are more pronounced when leaders are perceived to have weak rather than strong ethical convictions. Further, we argued and showed that employees’ feelings of personal control and perceived voice opportunity mediated the interactive effect of ethical leadership and perceived leader ethical conviction on OCB and deviance. Implications of these findings for theory and practice are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-102
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Business Ethics
Volume154
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 15 2019
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Deviance
  • Ethical leadership
  • Organizational citizenship behavior
  • Perceived leader ethical conviction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Law

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