A STUDY OF SOME ROLE DIMENSIONS OF LEADER-FOLLOWER RELATIONS.
STATE UNIV OF NEW YORK BUFFALO
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Willingness of group members to accept a leaders influence attempts was seen to depend on four perceived leader characteristics his comptetence, his interest in participating in the group activity, his interest in the group members, and the source of his authority, in terms of appointment or election. Levels of the four leader characteristics were systematically varied by a descriptive technique to comprise a 3 x 3 x 2 x 2 factorial design. Each cell consisted of 17 subjects given a particular description of a hypothetical leader incorporating one level of each of the leader characteristics. Subjects responded to the leader described by ratings on each of four role dimensions continue as leader, serve as group spokesman, have as a follower, and have as a friend.. Except for source of authority, each attribute of the leader had a statistically significant impact on member acceptance and endorsement of him in each of the four role relationships. The leader described as good performer in the group activity, interested in group members, and interested in the group activity was most highly rated on each dimension. These results are consistent with an interactive approach to leadership which stresses the leaders perceived characteristics as a determinant of his ability to exert influence. Author