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The Importance of Empathy as a Distal Leadership Attribute in the Emergence of Leaders in Small Groups

Research output: Contribution in Book/Report/Proceedings - With ISBN/ISSNChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review



Purpose To examine empathy as a trait that influences leadership behaviors,
which, in turn, influence group decision-making.
Design/Methodology/Approach This study uses an assessment center
design to maximize internal validity.
Findings The structural equation model shows that empathy strongly AU:1
relates to both relationship leadership and task leadership, while cognitive
ability only relates to task leadership. Both relationship leadership and task
leadership exert influence over group task choice and group decisions. Thus,
empathy has its major effects through influencing leader behaviors, which, in
turn, have distal impacts on outcomes such as influence over decisions.
Research Limitations/Implications The study results should be further
tested in field settings.