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Fear and Compliance: A Study of Antecedents, Mediators and Benefits of Paternalistic Leadership in China

ZHENG, YUYAN (2016) Fear and Compliance: A Study of Antecedents, Mediators and Benefits of Paternalistic Leadership in China. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.



Paternalistic leadership has been suggested as one prevalent leadership style in China. However, empirical research is limited in investigating the predictive factors as well as its correlations with organisational outcome measures. Drawing upon a total sample of 850 leader-subordinate dyads from mainland China, this research attempts to depict a comprehensive picture of paternalistic leadership, by examining its antecedents, outcomes, mediators, and moderators. Included are three independent empirical studies. Study 1 investigates the antecedents of paternalistic leadership. By examining a cross-lagged model, it is found that followers’ trust-in-supervisor can impact their ratings of leader paternalistic leadership across time, and such impact is further moderated by individual external locus of control by powerful others. In Study 2, by testing a three-way interaction model, it is found that authoritarian leadership has a positive impact on employees’ culture-specific organisational citizenship behaviour; and benevolent leadership and employee resource dependence jointly play critical roles for authoritarian leadership in generating such positive impact. Finally, in Study 3, by investigating a moderated mediation model, authoritarian leadership has been found to negatively impact on followers’ job performance via followers’ fear of their supervisors. This mediation effect is also moderated by follower gender, which demonstrates that the mediation effect only takes place in female followers, but not in male followers. Theoretical and practical limitations and directions for follow-up research are discussed. Overall, the assessment of both antecedents and outcomes of paternalistic leadership in this thesis is essential for the emerging research on paternalistic leadership.

Keywords: paternalistic leadership, trust-in-supervisor, fear, resource dependence, job performance, organisational citizenship behaviour.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Social Sciences and Health > Economics, Finance and Business, School of
Thesis Date:2016
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:08 Dec 2016 16:11

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