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Relationships Among Applications of Tacit Knowledge and Transformational/Transactional Leader Styles: An Exploratory Comparison of the MLQ and TKML


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The purpose of this paper is to examine intercorrelational relations among the self-report behavioral construct Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ) 5X transformational and transactional subscales and the Tacit Knowledge for Military Leaders Inventory (TKML) leader-level specific situational judgment test scenarios. Design/methodology/approach: In total, two leadership measures, the behavioral construct MLQ and the cognitive construct TKML assess different aspects of how a leader functions and were administered to 125 active US Army officers representing three leader levels: platoon, company, and battalion. The authors examine the intercorrelational relationship between these two measures. Findings: Results show a correlational pattern that contours the evolution of a leaders skills (from novice platoon leader to expert battalion leader), with the strongest correlation at the higher leader levels. Research limitations/implications: The decision to restrict the number of TKML scenarios provided to respondents and to administer the MLQ and TKML to the same sample is considered a limitation. Practical implications: Pairing the MLQ and TKML makes use of self-reported leader behaviors with maximal assessment scales that directly assess respondents understanding of what the best approaches to good leadership are. Social implications: Response patterns from both measures permits direct counseling on the misconceptions about leadership to create better leaders. Originality/value: No previous research has examined correlative relations among the scales/subscales of the MLQ and TKML.




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