The consequences of (not) seeing eye-to-eye about the past:The role of supervisor–team fit in past temporal focus for supervisors' leadership behavior

Roman Briker, Frank Walter, Michael S. Cole

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Abstract

This study seeks to advance our understanding of the leadership consequences that may ensue when supervisors and their teams have similar versus differing orientations toward the past. Integrating a leader–team fit perspective with functional leadership theory, we cast incongruence between supervisor and team past temporal focus as a key antecedent of supervisors' active (i.e., task-oriented and relationship-oriented) and passive (i.e., laissez-faire) leadership behaviors toward the team. We tested our hypotheses in a team-level study that included a field sample of 84 super-visors and their teams using polynomial regression and response surface analyses.Results illustrated that supervisors demonstrated more task-oriented and relationship-oriented leadership when supervisors' and their team's past temporal focus were incongruent rather than aligned. Furthermore, in situations of supervisor–team congruence, supervisors engaged in less task-oriented and relationship-oriented leadership and more laissez-faire leadership with higher (rather than lower)levels of supervisor and team past temporal focus. In sum, these findings support a complex (mis)fit model such that supervisors' attention to the past may hinder their productive leadership behaviors in some team contexts but not in others. Hence, this research advances a novel, multiple-stakeholder perspective on the role of both supervisors' and their team's past temporal focus for important leadership behavior
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)244-262
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Organizational Behavior
Volume41
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • laissez-faire leadership
  • past temporal focus
  • relationship-oriented leadership
  • task-oriented leadership
  • time perspective
  • LAISSEZ-FAIRE LEADERSHIP
  • POWER DISTANCE VALUES
  • TIME PERSPECTIVE
  • TRANSFORMATIONAL LEADERSHIP
  • INTERRATER RELIABILITY
  • CULTURAL-DIFFERENCES
  • METAANALYTIC TEST
  • WORK
  • PERFORMANCE
  • PERSONALITY

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