Understanding Organizational Politics- an Integrated Model ofTransformational Leadership Effectiveness

Author: Naheed Atta

Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Muneer Ahmad and Prof. Dr. Daniel Farrell

Degree: Ph.D

Year: 2011

University: Institute of Applied 0chology, Punjab University, Lahore, Pakistan

Present dissertation is built on integrating two streams of research,
organizational politics and transformational leadership. Organizational
politics research has been receiving research attention since the last three
decades. The literature has primarily focused on its negative
consequences. Leadership plays a critical role in increasingly complex
and political environment of the organizations. The dissertation is a
correlational study designed to examine the influence of leadership
behavior, on a chain of work place issues including psychological
empowerment, organizational politics, and a series of work outcomes in
both governmental and private organizations. The work outcomes
include, work attitudes (organizational cynicism, job involvement,
organizational commitment), and work behaviors (in-role performance,
organizational citizenship behavior and counterproductive behaviors). A
cross sectional survey based on questionnaire/interview is conducted on a
sample of 709 employees including male/females, of age range (25 – 60)
selected from public and private sector organizations. The overarching
goal of this research is to test the linkage between transformational
leadership, organizational politics and work outcome via structural
equation modeling while taking into account the moderating and
mediating role of leader political skill and employee psychological
empowerment. It is assumed that transformational leadership is a
predictor of reduced organizational politics and that transformational
leadership through psychological empowerment moderates the adverse
impacts of organizational politics on work attitudes, and work behaviors.
Analysis of casual relationships is based on structural equation
modeling and path analysis, carried out to test the hypotheses in two
different settings (private and public sector employees). The originality of
this study concerns testing interactive relations among variables by
examining the moderating and mediating influences through advance
statistical procedures. Structural equation modeling is quite new approach
to social sciences research. Empirical evidence for indirect effects and
reactions to organizational politics tested through structural equation
modeling (SEM) in scarce in the past.
The dissertation results provide support for the hypotheses set
forth to test the direct relations among the constructs. However the
mechanism proposed to explain the influence of leadership on
organizational politics did not receive support from data. The data failed
to provide support to some of the mediating and moderating hypotheses.
Overall the assumption of the dissertation that transformational
leadership influences organizational politics which in turn influences
work outcomes is supported.
The implications of the findings for future research are that it will
further extend empirical research and methodology on organizational
politics, in general, and will initiate research in this area in Pakistan, in
particular. The study has practical implications for the training and
management development practitioners, to develop techniques and
strategies to cope with detrimental effects of politics organizations by
developing constructive climate through leaders’ behavior.
Keywords: Organizational politics, transformational leadership

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Corresponding Address: Department of Applied 0chology, University of the Punjab, Lahore, Pakistan. Email: chairperson@ap0.pu.edu.pk, Phone: 92-42-9231245

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