Brown Bag Seminar: Robert Liden

23 February, 2011 - 10:30 to 12:00
Terrace Room, Sir Llew Edwards Building

Servant leadership refers to a form of leading that focuses on the development of each followers’ full potential by putting the interests and needs of followers above all else. This approach to leadership involves individualized attention, empowerment, and provision of support, as well as serving as an ethical role model. Servant leadership theory focuses on mutual trust between the leader and each follower as the key force that mediates relationships between servant leadership and follower outcomes.

A program of research on servant leadership is presented that includes discussion of four studies addressing: 1) the measurement of servant leadership; 2) the influence of servant leadership on individual outcomes; 3) an assessment of servant leadership at the team level; and 4) individual servant leadership prototypes, which involves the variability in individual desire for servant leadership. Results of the four studies provide support for the validity of a measure of servant leadership, which includes the finding of positive relationships between servant leadership and job performance, organizational citizenship behaviors, organizational commitment, and psychological contract fulfillment at the individual level, and team potency and team effectiveness at the team level. Interestingly, it was discovered that there is variability in follower desire for servant leadership, which was found to moderate relationships between servant leadership and outcomes: Followers expressing a lower desire for servant leadership were found to experience lower individual outcomes the more their leaders engaged in servant leadership behaviors. Conversely, strong positive relationships between servant leadership and individual outcomes were evident for followers reporting a strong desire for servant leadership.

Morning Tea provided.

Robert Liden, Professor, University of Illinois, Chicago, USA

Robert C. Liden (Ph.D., University of Cincinnati) is Professor of Management at the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he is the College of Business Director of Doctoral Programs. He has served as a visiting professor at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, the Université Toulouse 1 des Sciences Sociales, Toulouse, France, and the Université Paris-Dauphine. His research focuses on interpersonal processes as they relate to such topics as leadership, groups, career progression and employment interviews. Among his publications, he has over 35 articles in the Academy of Management Journal, Academy of Management Review, Administrative Science Quarterly, Journal of Applied Psychology, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, and Personnel Psychology. In 2000 he was inducted into the Academy of Management Journals’ Hall of Fame as a charter bronze member. He won the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) Foundation’s Heneman award for the best research conducted in human resource management during 1995. He also won awards (with coauthors) for the best article published in the Academy of Management Journal during 2001, the best article published in Human Resource Management during 2001, and the best organizational behavior article published in any journal during 2005 by the Organizational Behavior Division of the Academy of Management. His articles have been cited over 6000 times according to Google Scholar. Professor Liden is currently serving on the editorial boards of the Academy of Management Review, Human Relations, Journal of Applied Psychology, Journal of Management, Leadership Quarterly, and Personnel Psychology. He previously served on the editorial board of the Academy of Management Journal. He was the 1999 Program Chair and 2000-01 Division Chair for the Academy of Management’s Organizational Behavior Division.