DESPOTIC LEADERSHIP AND EMPLOYEE CYNICISM: THE ROLE OF PSYCHOLOGICAL NEED THWARTING AND OBSERVER'S SCHADENFREUDE
Keywords:Despotic leadership, Psychological Need thwarting, Observes schadenfreude and Cynicism
This study examines the impact of one of the dark types of leadership from an organizational perspective on attitudinal and behavioral work outcomes. Among many types of destructive leadership, despotic leadership is the one that is under-researched and is grabbing the attention of scholars. Therefore, the adverse attitudinal and behavioral work outcomes of despotic leadership at workplaces have been investigated. The relationship between despotic leadership and cynicism has been studied with the mediating mechanism of psychological need thwarting and the moderating mechanism of the observer's schadenfreude. Self-determination theory (SDT) provides theoretical anchorage for the study's conceptual framework. The time-lagged data collection method was used from white-collar employees of Rawalpindi, Islamabad and KPK, Pakistan, manufacturing sector. The items related to despotic leadership and observer’s schadenfreude were studied in phase one, whereas psychological need thwarting and cynicism in phase two to reduce common method variance. Smart PLS was used for the data analysis. The empirical findings of the research indicate that psychological need thwarting mediated the relationship, while the observer's schadenfreude moderated the relationship between despotic leadership and cynicism. Theoretical and managerial implications for eradicating the phenomenon of despotic leadership from the workplace are discussed, along with limitations and future research implications for advancing future research.
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