Changes self-identity associated with depression and social

Changes in the organizational reality of a workplace require managers to possess a different set of skills/behaviors than previously needed. A Leader, once described as an overseer, is better described today as a coach or facilitator (Kirkpatrick & Locke, 1991; Nyhan & Martin, 1999). The correlation between a Leader’s new set of necessary skills/behaviors with work outcomes is a topic of over-increasing interest. The practice of self-criticism by someone in a leading position is investigated for the first time, in this study, as a behavior positively linked with favorable wok outcomes.
Self-criticism refers to the processes by which individuals evaluate themselves. In literature regarding psychology, Self-Criticism is typically discussed as a negative characteristic in which the person has an agitated self-identity associated with depression and social anxiety (Blatt, 2008). In contrast, this study treats self-criticism as a positive and significant aspect of personality and development. A Leader who exercises self-criticism is critical about their action and performance; they undertake responsibility, communicate it with the team and encourage self-criticism in their team members
Organizational behavior and Leadership theory do not make any reference to this behavior. However, related behaviors such as Leader accountability, self-control against criticism, behavioral integrity and relational transparency, have been examined as to their impact on the working environment.
First, Leader accountability refers to a Leader’s expectation that she/he may be called on to justify her/his decisions and actions to others (De Cremer & Dijk, 2009; Tetlock, 1992). Accountability mechanisms can range from formal (e.g., performance evaluation systems, financial reporting procedures, etc.) to informal (e.g., feelings of loyalty to an organization) (Ammeter, Douglas, Ferris, & Goka, 2004). A lack of Leader accountability can often lead to unethical behavior in organizations. More specifically, according to Beu & Buckley (2001) leaders’ temptation to act in ways that benefit their own interest rather than the welfare of the common good (e.g., customers, society, etc.) will be more intense when they do not await to be called to justify for their judgement. Research suggests that a number of dependent variables are positively influenced by accountability, including performance (Yarnold, Mueser, ; Lyons, 1988), satisfaction (Haccoun ; Klimoski, 1975), conformity (Breaugh ; Klimoski, 1977), goals and attentiveness (Frink, 1998).
We can argue that Self-Criticism and accountability are comparable behaviors since both include the justification of decisions and actions to oneself and/or to others. Likewise, it is possible that Leader self-criticism will have analogous influence over outcomes. Of course, Self-Criticism is as a personal procedure, a state of mind, and is, therefore, more similar to informal accountability.
Self-control against criticism is another behavior that is similar to self-criticism. Leaders that lack self-control against criticism are more likely to take comments and suggestions from their employees as personal attacks and become less open to feedback and ideas (Prati, Douglas, Ferris, Ammeter, ; Buckley, 2003). Trust can suffer and employees may fear proposing creative ideas and meeting opportunities (Prati et al. 2003). By contrast, Leaders with higher self-control against criticism may feel less threatened by the changes that creative ideas might imply; they may be more inclined to welcome creative suggestions by employees, establish higher quality exchanges with employees (Brower, Schoorman, Hoon Tan, ; Brower, 2000; Tierney, Farmer, ; Graen, 1999) and foster employees’ willingness to propose creative ideas (Prati et al. 2003). It is reasonable to assume that Leaders with high self-control against criticism are more likely to exercise self-criticism than Leaders with low self-control.
Thirdly, Behavioral Integrity (BI) refers to a Leader’s wholeness, authenticity, as well as consistency in the face of adversity and between words and actions or moral and ethical behavior (Palanski ; Yammarino, 2007) Leader BI is positively associated with follower trust, organizational commitment, satisfaction with the Leader (Palanski ; Yammarino, 2007; Simons, Friedman, Liu, ; McLean Parks, 2007) and organizational citizenship behaviors (Dineen, Lewicki, ; Tomlinson, 2006). Moreover, followers who perceive high BI in their Leader are more willing to offer criticism (Simons et al., 2007). Palanski ; Yammarino, 2007 have suggested that, as a virtue, perceived Leader integrity is also likely to foster subordinate achievements.
If Leaders with high BI exhibit traits such as authenticity, consistency and a general ethical behavior, these characteristics are also associated with self-criticism and we can argue that the later is more likely to appear when high BI is present.
Relational transparency, finally, refers to the act of presenting one’s authentic self to others (Kernis, 2003). Leaders that achieve relational transparency come to know and accept themselves, display higher levels of trustworthiness, openness, and willingness to share their thoughts and feelings in close relationships (Gardner, Avolio, Luthans, May, & Walumbwa, 2005). Relational transparency promotes trust through disclosures that involve the open sharing of information and expressions of one’s true thoughts and feelings (Kernis, 2003), leading to interpersonal cooperation and teamwork (Jones ; George, 1998). A Leader who exercises self-criticism is likely to achieve high levels of relational transparency as by practicing self-criticism Leaders show true trustworthiness, openness, and willingness to share their thoughts and feelings.


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