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Transformational leadership and voice behaviors: The mediating effect of employee perceived meaningful work

Shyh-Jer Chen (Institute of Human Resource Management, National Sun Yat-sen University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan)
Miao-Ju Wang (Institute of Human Resource Management, National Sun Yat-sen University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan)
Shih-Han Lee (Institute of Human Resource Management, National Sun Yat-sen University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan)

Personnel Review

ISSN: 0048-3486

Article publication date: 3 April 2018

3064

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to argue that, in situations where transformational leadership (TL) is in effect, perceived meaningfulness in work plays a vital role in generating intrinsic motivation among employees; specifically, this can influence employees to endeavor to benefit their organizations through engaging in voice behavior.

Design/methodology/approach

In this empirical study, a cross-sectional dyad questionnaire method was adopted to collect data from 172 employees from 40 companies.

Findings

The results show that perceiving work as meaningful is positively related, through a direct effect, to promotive and prohibitive voice behaviors. Further, employees perceiving their work as meaningful were found to fully mediate the relationship between TL and promotive voice behavior, but not prohibitive voice behavior. These results indicate that employees under TL who consider their jobs to be meaningful engage in more voice behaviors that might eventually benefit their organizations.

Originality/value

This study demonstrates that meaningful work is a considerable predictor of voice behavior. The results show that when a person experiences TL, it increases the chances that they perceive their work as meaningful, which in turn encourages them to engage in voice behavior that can benefit their organization. The findings from this research suggest that organizations can create “win-win” situations that benefit both their employees and the organizations themselves.

Keywords

Citation

Chen, S.-J., Wang, M.-J. and Lee, S.-H. (2018), "Transformational leadership and voice behaviors: The mediating effect of employee perceived meaningful work", Personnel Review, Vol. 47 No. 3, pp. 694-708. https://doi.org/10.1108/PR-01-2017-0016

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited

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