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Workers into Managers: Developing Leadership Competence of Production Unit Managers


  • Rappe, Christoph
  • Zwick, Thomas


This study analyses the competence gaps of lower-level managers in a typical manufacturing plant in Germany that had recently introduced a teamwork structure. Results indicate that the managers have difficulties with their new leadership-related tasks. Higher levels of leadership competence are found to be associated with better acceptance as a manager by superiors, but not by subordinates, better interaction with both subordinates and superiors, and with higher job satisfaction. Finally, a quasi-experiment shows that a combination of workshops and individual coaching had measurable effects on leadership competencies and partly improved identification with the managerial role. In terms of methodology, a new format of self-assessments is suggested for a more valid measurement of competencies.

Suggested Citation

  • Rappe, Christoph & Zwick, Thomas, 2005. "Workers into Managers: Developing Leadership Competence of Production Unit Managers," ZEW Discussion Papers 05-13, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:zewdip:2903

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    More about this item


    Leadership skills; first line managers; training; experiment;

    JEL classification:

    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments
    • M12 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - Personnel Management; Executives; Executive Compensation


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