When do subordinates commit to their supervisors? Different effects of perceived supervisor integrity and support on Chinese and American employees

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When do subordinates commit to their supervisors? Different effects of perceived supervisor integrity and support on Chinese and American employees
The Leadership Quarterly

While subordinates' commitment to the supervisor is highly desirable, the routes to achieve this might vary in different cultures. Drawing on the theories of leader–member exchange (LMX) and cultural logic, this study posits different interaction effects for subordinates' perceived supervisor integrity and support on commitment to the supervisor in cultures with different expectations of personal integrity. The results indicate that an additive effect can be observed for American subordinates: perceived supervisor support increases commitment to the supervisor to a greater extent when a high degree of supervisor integrity is also perceived. In contrast, a compensatory effect can be observed for Chinese subordinates: perceived supervisor support increases commitment to the supervisor more when a lower degree of supervisor integrity is perceived. Our findings shed light on cultural differences in the psychological mechanisms of employees' relationship with their supervisors. Theoretical and practical implications for the effectiveness of Asian leadership are discussed.

Citation: 
The Leadership Quarterly Volume 26, Issue 1, February 2015, Pages 81–97

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