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Do "protean" employees make better leaders? The answer is in the eye of the beholder

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Title: Do "protean" employees make better leaders? The answer is in the eye of the beholder
Author(s): Briscoe, Jon P.; Hoobler, Jenny M.; Byle, Kevin A.
Subject(s): protean career transformational leadership
Abstract: While the protean career (Hall 1976; 2002) has been lauded for its advantages in helping individuals adapt to changing career contexts, it is not clear how this career orientation may impact how others perceive a person’s leadership ability. In this study we hypothesized that those with a protean career orientation would receive higher leadership ratings from subordinates and superiors, but lower leadership ratings from peers, in part based upon social comparison theory. Using structural equation modeling, our hypotheses regarding subordinates and peers were supported, but not with respect to superiors, who along with peers rated those with a protean career orientation lower in terms of transformational leadership as measured by the MLQ. We discuss potential reasons for these findings and the consequences for research and theory. Also, we examine the implications of this research for leadership development, workforce recruitment and retention, and possible generational significance.
Issue Date: 2010-10
Publisher: Elsevier
Citation Info: Briscoe, J. P., Hoobler, J. M., & Byle, K. A. 2010. Do "protean" employees make better leaders? The answer is in the eye of the beholder. Leadership Quarterly, 21(5): 783-795. DOI: 10.1016/j.leaqua.2010.07.007
Type: Article
Description: Post print version of article may differ from published version. The definitive version is available through Elsevier at DOI: 10.1016/j.leaqua.2010.07.007
ISSN: 1048-9843
Date Available in INDIGO: 2011-05-25

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