Does a retailer’s charisma matter? A study of frontline employee perceptions of charisma in the retail setting

Arto Lindblom*, Sami Kajalo, Lasse Mitronen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose - In today's retail environment, retailers' leadership skills can make the difference between the success and failure of their retail stores. Despite the acknowledgment that retailers' leadership skills and behaviour are important, treatment of the topic within the retail marketing and management literatures is still very limited. Against this backdrop, this paper aims to focus on the relationship between the retailers' charismatic leadership and frontline employee outcomes.

Design/methodology/approach - For the purpose of this study, the authors develop hypotheses about the influence of the retailers' charismatic leadership on frontline employee job satisfaction, self-efficacy, organizational identification and turnover intentions. Using structural equation modelling, hypotheses are tested using a sample of 208 frontline employees from the Finnish retail industry.

Findings - As a first main contribution, the findings of this study indicate that charismatic leadership has a very strong positive impact on job satisfaction. As a second contribution, this study shows that there is strong positive link between charismatic leadership and the self-efficacy of frontline employees. As a third contribution, this study indicates that charismatic leadership is positively related to organizational identification. And finally, this study indicates that charismatic leadership has a very strong negative impact on employee turnover intentions.

Originality/value - This study contributes to retail management and services marketing literature by broadening the current understanding of the leadership behaviour of retailers and its effectiveness and demonstrating how frontline employees respond to charismatic leadership in the retail setting.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)266-276
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Services Marketing
VolumeVolume 30 · Number 3 · 2016
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 24 May 2016
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • Leadership
  • Frontline employee
  • Retailing
  • Charisma
  • ORGANIZATIONAL CITIZENSHIP BEHAVIORS
  • STRUCTURAL EQUATION MODELS
  • CUSTOMER ORIENTATION
  • TRANSFORMATIONAL LEADERSHIP
  • JOB-SATISFACTION
  • SELF-EFFICACY
  • PSYCHOLOGICAL EMPOWERMENT
  • ENVIRONMENTAL UNCERTAINTY
  • MANAGEMENT RESEARCH
  • TEAM PERFORMANCE

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