Leader Self-Sacrifice and Leadership Effectiveness: The Moderating Role of Leader Prototypicality
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Self-sacrificing behavior of the leader and the extent to which the leader is representative of the group (i.e., group prototypical) are proposed to interact to influence leadership effectiveness. The authors expected self-sacrificing leaders to be considered more effective and to be able to push subordinates to a higher performance level than non-self-sacrificing leaders, and these effects were expected to be more pronounced for less prototypical leaders than for more prototypical leaders. The results of a laboratory experiment showed that, as expected, productivity levels, effectiveness ratings, and perceived leader group-orientedness and charisma were positively affected by leader self-sacrifice, especially when leader prototypicality was low. The main results were replicated in a scenario experiment and 2 surveys.