The importance of value-based leadership such as authentic, ethical, and servant leadership is inconspicuous. However, the benefits of these leadership approaches are often only explained through the behaviors of their followers. As such, limited research has communicated the leader’s motivation for pursuing such leadership behavior, resulting in such discourse to escape theorizing. We draw upon role theory and paid attention to the role of higher-level management (leadership) through the trickle-down model to underline their importance in the organization. We then expand this role theory framework by synthesizing research to explain the emergence of value-based leadership behavior at the frontline of management. In doing so, we aim to provide a stronger explanation of the emergence of value-based leadership in organizations. We conclude this analysis by guiding future research in the form of propositions to investigate the psychological process and organizational factors to empirically examine the proposed role framework.
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- ethical leadership
- servant leadership
- authentic leadership
- role theory
- frontline manager