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Leader Apologies and Employee and Leader Well-Being

Listed author(s):
  • Alyson Byrne


  • Julian Barling


  • Kathryne Dupré


Registered author(s):

    Regardless of leaders’ efforts to do the right thing and meet performance expectations, they make mistakes, with possible ramifications for followers’ and leaders’ well-being. Some leaders will apologize following transgressions, which may have positive implications for their followers’ and their own well-being, contingent upon the nature and severity of the transgressions. We examine these relationships in two separate studies. In Study 1, leader apologies had a positive relationship with followers’ psychological well-being and emotional health, and these relationships were moderated by the severity of the transgression. In Study 2, leader apologies had a positive relationship with their own psychological well-being, positive emotional health and authentic pride. In addition, the nature of transgressions moderated the relationship between leader apologies and leaders’ positive emotions and authentic pride, while the severity of transgressions moderated the relationship between leader apologies and their positive emotions, psychological health, and authentic pride. Implications and future research directions are discussed. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

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    Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Business Ethics.

    Volume (Year): 121 (2014)
    Issue (Month): 1 (April)
    Pages: 91-106

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    Handle: RePEc:kap:jbuset:v:121:y:2014:i:1:p:91-106
    DOI: 10.1007/s10551-013-1685-3
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    1. James Avey & Tara Wernsing & Michael Palanski, 2012. "Exploring the Process of Ethical Leadership: The Mediating Role of Employee Voice and Psychological Ownership," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 107(1), pages 21-34, April.
    2. Andranik Tumasjan & Maria Strobel & Isabell Welpe, 2011. "Ethical Leadership Evaluations After Moral Transgression: Social Distance Makes the Difference," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 99(4), pages 609-622, April.
    3. Kim, Peter H. & Dirks, Kurt T. & Cooper, Cecily D. & Ferrin, Donald L., 2006. "When more blame is better than less: The implications of internal vs. external attributions for the repair of trust after a competence- vs. integrity-based trust violation," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 99(1), pages 49-65, January.
    4. Pablo Ruiz & Carmen Ruiz & Ricardo Martínez, 2011. "Improving the “Leader–Follower” Relationship: Top Manager or Supervisor? The Ethical Leadership Trickle-Down Effect on Follower Job Response," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 99(4), pages 587-608, April.
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