Helplessness of empowerment: The joint effect of participative leadership and controllability attributional style on empowerment and performance

Xu Huang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study investigated how the controllability attributional style of an employee influences the effect of participative leadership on psychological empowerment and work performance. The controllability attributional style refers to the extent to which employees habitually attribute their negative organizational experiences such as failures and setbacks to controllable or uncontrollable causes. The results of two studies consistently showed that participative leadership had a weaker impact on employees' psychological empowerment for those who had a low rather than high controllability attributional style. In Study 2, psychological empowerment was found to fully mediate the joint effect of participative leadership and the controllability attributional style on the objective work performance of employees measured a month later.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)313-334
Number of pages22
JournalHuman Relations
Volume65
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2012
Externally publishedYes

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Social Sciences(all)
  • Strategy and Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation

User-Defined Keywords

  • leadership
  • management
  • motivation
  • organizational psychology
  • participation and workplace democracy

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