The elephant in the room? Exploring the motivational antecedents of servant leadership

Joshua Paas, Robert Frans Poell*, Sasa Batistič

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Purpose:
This paper aims to examine how psychological need satisfaction (PNS) relates to the display of servant leadership (SL) behavior through the motivation to serve (MTS) and non-calculative motivation to lead (MTL).

Design/Methodology/Approach:
Data were collected using an electronic online questionnaire completed by 125 individuals from various organizations and industries. Data were analyzed using confirmatory factor analysis and regression analysis.

Findings:
PNS, MTS, and non-calculative MTL were found to relate positively to the display of SL behavior. Moreover, both MTS and non-calculative MTL were found to be full mediators in the relationship between PNS and SL.

Originality/Value:
This study is one of the first to investigate the motivational antecedents of SL. Moreover, it is the first to empirically study PNS as an antecedent of SL. The findings emphasize the importance of a leader’s PNS in their motivation to display SL behavior, implying that a positive work environment is conducive to SL.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)637-652
JournalLeadership and Organizational Development Journal
Volume41
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Keywords

  • INTRINSIC MOTIVATION
  • LEAD
  • MULTILEVEL
  • Motivation to lead
  • Motivation to serve
  • NEED SATISFACTION
  • ORGANIZATIONS
  • PERCEPTIONS
  • PERFORMANCE
  • SELF-DETERMINATION THEORY
  • STRATEGIES
  • Self-determination theory
  • Servant leadership
  • TRANSFORMATIONAL LEADERSHIP

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'The elephant in the room? Exploring the motivational antecedents of servant leadership'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this