Examining the mechanisms linking transformational leadership, employee customer orientation, and service performance: The mediating roles of perceived supervisor and coworker support

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Aichia Chuang, Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/

Abstract: Purpose: The aim of this study is to test whether store-level transformational leadership influences service employees’ customer orientation via two different mechanisms—supervisor support and coworker support—and whether customer orientation leads to favorable customer-perceived employee service performance. Design/Methodology/Approach: Data were collected from multiple sources, comprising 212 service employee–customer dyads in 55 stores within Taiwan. Hierarchical linear modeling analysis (HLM) was employed to test the hypotheses. Findings: Our results indicate that transformational leadership not only directly increased employee customer orientation, but also indirectly enhanced employee customer orientation through employee-perceived supervisor support. However, employees’ perceived coworker support did not mediate the transformational leadership-customer orientation linkage. Moreover, although employee customer orientation was unrelated to customer-rated service performance, we found that the customer relationship moderated this association. Implications: Our results show that (1) transformational leadership can enhance employees’ customer orientation, and (2) supervisor support serves as the dominant mediator for the relationship between transformational leadership and employee customer orientation. Originality/Value: Previous studies have predominantly examined the main effects of transformational leadership on employee customer orientation. This study extends our understanding of this relationship by highlighting the important mediating role of perceived supervisor support in the transformational leadership–customer orientation linkage.

Additional Information

Journal of Business and Psychology, 25, 477-492
Language: English
Date: 2010
transformational leadership, customer orientation, supervisor support, service performance, trickle-down process, coworker support, multilevel analysis, Taiwan

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