The Impact of Leader Humor on Subordinate Job Satisfaction: The Crucial Role of Leader-Subordinate Relationship Quality
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AbstractConventional wisdom from the popular and scholarly literatures consistently suggests that positive humor by leaders can be beneficial, but that negative humor should be avoided at all costs. To explore the boundaries of that conventional wisdom, we draw on leadership and humor theory to develop and test a conceptual model describing the relationships between leader humor, leader-subordinate relationship quality, the subordinate's tenure with the leader, and subordinate job satisfaction. Analysis of multilevel data from 241 subordinates nested within 70 leaders in 54 organizations revealed that the relationship between leader humor and job satisfaction was dependent on the quality of the leader-subordinate relationship, and not the positive/negative tone of the leader's humor. Specifically, both positive and negative (i.e., affiliative and aggressive) leader humor styles were positively associated with job satisfaction when the relationship was positive, but both types were negatively associated with job satisfaction when the relationship was negative. Our results also suggested that the effects of positive humor increased with increasing subordinate tenure. We discuss the practical implications of these findings, including the importance of understanding the relational context of humor.
All Author(s) ListRobert C, Dunne TC, Iun J
Journal nameGroup and Organization Management
Year2016
Month6
Day1
Volume Number41
Issue Number3
PublisherSAGE PUBLICATIONS INC
Pages375 - 406
ISSN1059-6011
eISSN1552-3993
LanguagesEnglish-United Kingdom
Keywordshumor; humor styles; job satisfaction; leadership; LMX theory
Web of Science Subject CategoriesBusiness & Economics; Management; Psychology; Psychology, Applied

Last updated on 2020-15-09 at 01:59