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“Being true to oneself”: the interplay of responsible leadership and authenticity on multi-level outcomes

Muzhar Javed (Department of Management Sciences, COMSATS University Islamabad, Sahiwal, Pakistan)
Muhammad Waheed Akhtar (Department of Management Sciences, COMSATS University Islamabad, Sahiwal, Pakistan)
Khalid Hussain (Department of Management Sciences, COMSATS University Islamabad, Sahiwal, Pakistan)
Muhammad Junaid (Department of Management Sciences, COMSATS University Islamabad, Sahiwal, Pakistan) (COMEGI, Lusíada University, Lisbon, Portugal)
Fauzia Syed (Faculty of Management Sciences, International Islamic University, Islamabad, Pakistan)

Leadership & Organization Development Journal

ISSN: 0143-7739

Article publication date: 9 February 2021

Issue publication date: 20 April 2021

682

Abstract

Purpose

Drawing on stakeholder theory, this study examines the relationship between responsible leadership and its macro-, meso- and micro-level outcomes. Further, this study investigates the moderating role of authenticity on the relationship between responsible leadership and its multi-level effects, i.e. relational social capital, corporate social performance and community citizenship behaviour among employees.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors conducted four field studies using the quantitative methodology to test the hypotheses. In study 1 (N = 236), by adopting a multi-wave and multi-source research design, the authors examine the relationship between responsible leadership, authenticity and relational social capital. In study 2 (N = 203), by adopting a multi-wave research design, the authors examine the relationship between responsible leadership, authenticity and corporate social performance. In study 3 (N = 203), by adopting a multi-wave and multi-source research design, the authors examine the relationship between responsible leadership, authenticity and employees' community citizenship behaviour. In study 4 (N = 257), by adopting a multi-wave and multi-source research design, the authors capture the impact of responsible leadership on outcomes (social capital, corporate social performance and community citizenship behaviour) with a boundary condition of authenticity.

Findings

The authors find that responsible leadership enhances relational social capital, improves a firm's social performance and develops community citizenship behaviour among employees. Further, the study finds that authenticity positively moderates the relationship between responsible leadership and its multi-level outcomes.

Originality/value

First, it is a maiden study to investigate the multi-level outcomes of RL in a series of three empirical studies. Second, it contributes to RL literature by testing a unique moderating role of authenticity between RL and its multi-level outcomes of relational social capital, corporate social performance and employees' community citizenship behaviour. This study also provides empirical evidence for the multi-level implications of stakeholder theory.

Keywords

Citation

Javed, M., Akhtar, M.W., Hussain, K., Junaid, M. and Syed, F. (2021), "“Being true to oneself”: the interplay of responsible leadership and authenticity on multi-level outcomes", Leadership & Organization Development Journal, Vol. 42 No. 3, pp. 408-433. https://doi.org/10.1108/LODJ-04-2020-0165

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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