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Organizational Leadership: Motives and Behaviors of Leaders in Current Organizations

  • Margarita Martí (a1), Francisco Gil (a2) and Angel Barrasa (a3)

Organizational leadership is fundamental for the working and development of current organizations. It helps members of an organization to face transcendental challenges. One of the fundamental aspects of leaders is their personal characteristics and behaviour as perceived by their co-workers. Although research has established a relationship between these components, findings have failed to come up with any congruent evidence and further to this the organizations and contexts used are from several decades ago.

This article, which forms part of the international GLOBE project, analyses the relationship between motives and behaviour as perceived by co-workers in organizations, using quantitative and qualitative methods and including technological innovations. Using samples from 40 corporate directors and 84 of their co-workers, from different companies, it confirms how the main motives of leaders (power, affiliation and achievement) are related to different behavioral patterns (power to authoritarian, non-dependent and non-social-skill behaviours; affiliation to relationship and dependent behaviors, and achievement to proactive behaviors). It discusses the results with relation to traditional research and suggests practical measures and proposals for future investigations in this area.

El liderazgo organizacional resulta fundamental para el funcionamiento y desarrollo de las organizaciones actuales, implicando a sus miembros para afrontar retos transcendentales. Uno de los aspectos fundamentales del liderazgo son las características de personalidad de los líderes y las conductas percibidas por parte de los colaboradores. Aunque algunas investigaciones establecen relaciones entre ambas, no hay una evidencia congruente, y reflejan organizaciones y contextos de hace varias décadas. Este trabajo, que forma parte del proyecto internacional GLOBE, analiza la relación entre motivos y conductas percibidas por los colaboradores en organizaciones actuales utilizando métodos cuantitativos y cualitativos e incorporando innovaciones tecnológicas. Utilizando una muestra de 40 altos directivos y de 84 de sus colaboradores cercanos de diferentes empresas, se confirmó cómo los principales motivos de los líderes (poder, afiliación y logro) se asocian con diferentes patrones de conductas (poder con conductas autoritarias, no dependientes y no hábiles socialmente; afiliación con conductas de relación y dependencia, y logro con conductas proactivas). Se discuten los resultados en relación a las investigaciones tradicionales y se plantean medidas prácticas y propuestas de investigaciones futuras.

Corresponding author
Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Margarita Marti, ESADE, Av. Pedralves, 60-62, 08034 Barcelona (Spain) Tel: +34 932 806 162, Fax: +34 932 048 105, E-mail:
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The Spanish Journal of Psychology
  • ISSN: 1138-7416
  • EISSN: 1988-2904
  • URL: /core/journals/spanish-journal-of-psychology
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