The purpose of this paper is to present how ethical leadership has a double-edged effect to influence emotional exhaustion and long-term customer relationship developments of employees in a sales management context through a latent growth model (LGM).
To test the LGM, data were collected by surveying 407 salespeople of a retail travel agency with 814 customers in Greater China at multiple points over an eight-month period.
This study found that, as salespeople perceived more ethical leadership at Time 1, they were more likely to show increases in the work engagement development that increased the service performance development and increased the work–family conflict development over time. In addition, increases in service performance development influenced increases in customer relationship development and increases in work–family conflict development also influenced the emotional exhaustion development.
These findings help managers understand that enabling salespeople to use their full capabilities to their work by ethical leadership may bring not only high service performance but also negative factors that erode salespeople’s well-being.
Lee, C. and Huang, S. (2019), "Double-edged effects of ethical leadership in the development of Greater China salespeople's emotional exhaustion and long-term customer relationships", Chinese Management Studies, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/CMS-06-2018-0579Download as .RIS
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