The dynamics of voice behavior and leaders' network ties in times of leadership successions

Young Hun Ji, N. Andrew Cohen, Alan J. Daly, Kara S. Finnigan, Katherine J. Klein

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractScientificpeer-review


Leader successions are powerful events that can create disruptions in the flow of vertical communication. To investigate how new leaders gain access to key information, we examine two types of behaviors that facilitate this process—upward voice behaviors by subordinates and pro-active selection of communication partners by the new leader. To test our hypotheses, we conducted a longitudinal study in two public elementary schools undergoing changes in principal, gathering data both before and after the leadership succession event. Our findings suggest that, immediately after succession, employees' voice behavior and the leader's choice of communication partners are predicted by pre-succession attributes of the organizational members. For example, organization members who are high change self-efficacy engage in more upward voice and are likely targets of initial leader ties. After initial socialization period, we found that that pre-succession factors have less impact on voice and tie creation. Rather, these behaviors—employee upward voice and new leader tie creation—mutually reinforce each other over time. Members’ upward voice predicts tie creation from leaders and vice-versa.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2014
MoE publication typeNot Eligible


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