Service Leadership, Work Engagement, and Service Performance: The Moderating Role of Leader Skills

Yuyan Zheng*, Les Graham, Olga Epitropaki, Ed SNAPE

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Using social learning theory, the job demands-resources model and idiosyncrasy credit theory, the present study casts additional light on the explanatory mechanisms underlying the effects of service leadership on service performance. We examine employee work engagement as an important mediator of this relationship and explore the moderating role of leader task-based professional and managerial skills on the indirect relationship between service leadership and service performance via work engagement. Drawing upon 903 leader–follower dyads nested in 187 teams, with data collected from two sources, we find that after controlling for transformational leadership, follower work engagement mediates the relationship between service leadership and follower service performance. Furthermore, the results support the moderating role of leader task-based professional skills, but not of managerial skills. Specifically, the indirect effect of service leadership on service performance via work engagement is stronger when leaders display high levels of task-based professional skills. Theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-74
Number of pages32
JournalGroup and Organization Management
Volume45
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2020

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Applied Psychology
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management

User-Defined Keywords

  • leader skills
  • service leadership
  • service performance
  • work engagement

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