Why Moral Followers Quit: Examining the Role of Leader Bottom-Line Mentality and Unethical Pro-Leader Behavior

Journal of Business Ethics:1-15 (forthcoming)

Many business leaders vigorously and single-mindedly pursue bottom-line outcomes with the hope of producing superior results for themselves and their companies. Our study investigated two drawbacks of such leader bottom-line mentality. First, based on leaders’ power over followers, we hypothesized that leader BLM promotes unethical pro-leader behaviors among followers. Second, based on cognitive dissonance theory, we hypothesized that UPLB, and leader BLM via UPLB, increase turnover intention among employees with a strong moral identity. Data collected from 153 employees of various organizations supported our hypotheses. In particular, leader BLM was positively related to followers’ UPLB. Further, for employees with a stronger moral identity: UPLB was positively related to turnover intention; and leader BLM was related to turnover intention via UPLB.
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DOI 10.1007/s10551-018-3812-7
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Beyond Moral Reasoning.Dan Freeman - 2008 - Business Ethics Quarterly 18 (4):513-540.

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