Forgiveness in leader-member exchange (LMX) relationships: A multi-study examination of mediating and moderating mechanisms

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy

View graph of relations Save citation

Authors

Ana Radulovic

Abstract

Drawing upon theories from both the leadership and forgiveness domains, the overarching aim of this thesis was to answer a fundamental question. Namely, how and when does forgiveness unfold in Leader-Member Exchange (LMX) relationships and what are its outcomes? Even though it has been suggested that generic relationship knowledge from close relationship science can inform the understanding of LMX relationship maintenance, surprisingly little theoretical or empirical studies have addressed this area. By integrating both a framework of relationship maintenance mechanisms and a model of forgiveness in close relationships with LMX theory, study one developed and tested a model of forgiveness in LMX relationships. In a cross-sectional study involving 254 employees from eight organisations it was found that high LMX quality lead to higher job satisfaction and subjective well-being via greater follower’s forgiveness and subsequent follower’s relational efforts. Furthermore, it was found that higher levels of follower’s relationship self-efficacy and Leader-Member Exchange Social Comparison (LMXSC) enhanced follower’s forgiveness. The results of study one demonstrated that forgiveness of interpersonal transgressions in LMX relationships can lead to positive outcomes, and thus has important implications for LMX relationship maintenance and repair. Building on study one, study two adopted an experimental scenario design in order to examine the causal associations between LMX and forgiveness. Additionally, the study investigated the moderating role of forgiveness climate and the type of offence on follower’s forgiveness. The causal links between LMX and forgiveness were found for a competence-based offence but not for an integrity-based offence. Furthermore, it was found that forgiveness climate enhanced follower’s forgiveness in low quality (but not high quality) LMX relationships. This impact of forgiveness climate was found only following a low severity competence-based offence, and not following a high severity of competence-based or integrity-based offence. Overall, the findings of the thesis demonstrate that LMX relationships are vulnerable to interpersonal offences and that forgiveness could be used as a relationship maintenance strategy that yields positive outcomes.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
Supervisors/Advisors
Award date8 Mar 2017

    Keywords

  • leadership, forgiveness, leader-member exchange (LMX), subjective well-being, job satisfaction

If you have discovered material in the Aston Research Explorer, which is unlawful e.g. breaches copyright, (either theirs or that of a third party) or any other law, including but not limited to those relating to patent, trademark, confidentiality, data protection, obscenity, defamation, libel, then please read our Takedown Policy and contact the service immediately.

Download statistics

No data available

Employable Graduates; Exploitable Research

Copy the text from this field...