Serving followers and family?:A trickle-down model of how servant leadership shapes employee work performance


Previous studies have identified servant leadership as an important driver of organizational effectiveness. However, so far little research attention has been given to whether servant leadership displayed by leaders across an organization’s hierarchy can increase the effectiveness of its members. In this study, we integrate prosociality models with role motivation theory to examine how manager servant leadership trickles down to affect employee work performance as well as the role of supervisor family motivation in influencing the trickle-down process. Using a matched sample of employees and their supervisors from three companies in the Dominican Republic, multilevel structural equation modeling results show that manager servant leadership trickles down to inspire supervisor servant leadership, which in turn increases employee prosocial motivation and subsequent work performance. Furthermore, supervisor family motivation buffers the trickle-down mechanism in that the effect on employee work performance is weaker for supervisors with high levels of family motivation. Our research breaks new ground by shedding light on how and when servant leadership trickles down to shape employee work performance.

Publication DOI:
Divisions: College of Business and Social Sciences > Aston Business School
Additional Information: © 2019, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
Uncontrolled Keywords: Family motivation,Prosocial motivation,Servant leadership,Trickle-down model,Work performance,Education,Applied Psychology,Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management,Life-span and Life-course Studies
Publication ISSN: 1095-9084
Last Modified: 13 May 2024 07:23
Date Deposited: 06 Mar 2019 16:08
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Related URLs: https://www.sci ... sd_search_email (Publisher URL)
http://www.scop ... tnerID=8YFLogxK (Scopus URL)
PURE Output Type: Article
Published Date: 2019-06-01
Published Online Date: 2019-02-25
Accepted Date: 2019-02-22
Authors: Stollberger, Jakob (ORCID Profile 0000-0001-9642-7321)
Las Heras, Mireia
Rofcanin, Yasin
Bosch, Maria José

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