Journal of Business Ethics 127 (1):165-176 (2015)

The interest in ethical leadership has grown in the past few years, with an emphasis on the mechanisms through which it affects organizational life. However, research on the boundary conditions that limit and/or enhance its effectiveness is still scarce, especially concerning one of the main misconceptions about ethical leadership, its incompatibility with effectiveness . Thus, the present study examines the relationship between ethical leadership and organizational deviance via affective commitment to the organization, as a reflection of the quality of the employee–organization relationship and proposes this relationship is conditional on the supervisor’s personal reputation for performance . Using a sample of 224 employees and their respective supervisors from 18 organizations, we confirmed our hypotheses . Our findings suggest that ethical leadership is positively related to employees’ affective commitment to the organization, particularly when supervisor’s reputation for performance is high, which in turn is associated with decreased organizational deviance. The theoretical and practical implications of these findings conclude the paper
Keywords Ethical leadership  Reputation for performance  EOR  Organizational commitment  Organizational deviance
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DOI 10.1007/s10551-013-1997-3
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