Thesis Title

An Examination of Leader Traits and Effective Leader Behavior

Author

Will Franks

Date of Graduation

Summer 2001

Degree

Master of Science in Psychology

Department

Psychology

Committee Chair

Carol Shoptaugh

Subject Categories

Psychology

Abstract

This study examined the role of personality in predicting effective leader behaviors. A key difference between this study and past research was the examination of actual leader behaviors rather than perceptions of leaders' effectiveness. Based upon past research in personality, self-regulation theory and functional leadership theory, a model was hypothesized to explain the process of how personality influences effective leader behaviors. Sixty-three leaders completed a battery of individual difference measures and were videotaped while they participated in a group manufacturing game developed by leadership researchers. Trained raters examined the functional behaviors demonstrated by the leaders using accepted definitions. The model was partially supported, however neither conscientiousness nor extraversion were fully mediated. Personality traits seem to relate better to leader's overall efficacy than to the functional leader behaviors examined in this study. This model and other correlational relationships examined may provide a better theoretical understanding of how personality is associated with effective leader behavior and prove useful to practitioners in human resource management.

Copyright

© Will Franks

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