The purpose of this study is to examine the relationship between transformational leadership (TL) and authentic leadership (AL) using a canonical correlation analysis (CCA).
The sample was 427 knowledge workers from a Fortune Global 100 company in Korea. Descriptive statistics and CCA were used to test the relationship between the two perceived leadership constructs.
A canonical correlation indicated that the composite of TL (i.e. idealized influence, inspirational motivation, intellectual stimulation and individualized consideration) was strongly and significantly related to the composite of AL (i.e. transparency, moral/ethical, balanced processing and self-awareness), accounting for 82.3 per cent of the shared variance between the two variable sets.
This empirical study was based on employees’ perceptions on the two leadership behaviors of their supervisors, using a cross-sectional survey method. In addition, this study is confined to the employees in a for-profit organization in Korean cultural setting, leaving room for speculation with regard to cultural issues.
It is noted the two leadership behaviors are not substitutable, but complementary. Therefore, human resources development (HRD) practitioners are suggested to design leadership development programs focusing both on AL and TL in a concerted way. In this way, HRD professionals can help their managers enhance their AL and TL capability, and thus let their followers emulate their leader’s behaviors, which ultimately will lead to higher level of organizational commitment, employee/job engagement and in-role and extra-role performance.
This is the first study that empirically confirmed Burns’ (1978) initial intuitive conceptualization of the authentic transformational leaders. We found that an authentic leader appears to be a transformational leader or vice versa. Another contribution lies in that to identify the common denominator between the two leadership behaviors this study used a relatively rare CCA in the field of HRD.
This paper is submitted for a refereed paper of European Journal of Training and Development. The authors presented an earlier draft of this article at the 2013 Academy of Human Resource Development Conference, Arlington, VA. This manuscript is the authors’ original work, has not been published elsewhere and is not under consideration for publication elsewhere at the time it is submitted. The correspondence should be directed to the first author.
(Brian) Joo, B. and Nimon, K. (2014), "Two of a kind? A canonical correlational study of transformational leadership and authentic leadership", European Journal of Training and Development, Vol. 38 No. 6, pp. 570-587. https://doi.org/10.1108/EJTD-12-2013-0129Download as .RIS
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