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Effect of a CBT intervention on leader behavior and well-being

English title Effect of a CBT intervention on leader behavior and well-being
Applicant Antonakis John
Number 138165
Funding scheme Project funding (Div. I-III)
Research institution Département de management Faculté des hautes études commerciales Université de Lausanne
Institution of higher education University of Lausanne - LA
Main discipline Science of management
Start/End 01.12.2011 - 31.08.2015
Approved amount 313'521.00
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Keywords (6)

Cognitive-behavioral therapy; Intervention; Leadership; Personality; Psychological measures; Stess

Lay Summary (English)

Lead
Lay summary

The amount of resources invested in leadership development is substantial because of the widely-held belief that leaders are important contributors to the effective functioning of teams and organizations (Bass & Bass, 2008). Thus, there is a need to develop evidence-based approaches to leadership development. We propose to use a cognitive-behavioral approach to changing leader behavior. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) interventions have a strong theoretical and empirical base should go beyond “standard” behavioral-change interventions that are currently used by industrial psychologists; a CBT intervention should be particularly useful in helping participants to learn to deal with what we refer to as “leader blockages,” unwanted behaviors that increase autonomous arousal and inhibit the development and maintenance of appropriate leader behaviors.

We will fully cross a CBT intervention with a standard leadership training intervention. That is, we will randomly assign participants to either a (a) leadership training (e.g., as used by Antonakis, Fenley, & Liechti, 2011) (b) CBT intervention, (c) combined CBT-leadership training, and (d) control group. Participants who do not receive the full training or only receive partial training will obtain the missing trainings at the end of the experiment. Our sample will also be unique in that we will use practicing managers in ecologically-valid conditions.

We anticipate finding that a CBT intervention complementing a traditional leadership intervention will engender better acquisition of actual leadership skills (measured in-situ using ratings of participants’ colleagues), a lower level of stress, and better leader performance as compared to the standard approaches (used alone). We will also examine the impact of the intervention on physiological measures (e.g., cortisol, testosterone, and heart rate).

This study will be one of the first to explicitly use a leadership behavior change approach based on CBT coupled with a solid application of leadership theory; the research team is also unique in that it includes an expert in leadership, an expert in CBT, and a collaborator who is an expert in human behavioral neurobiology.

REFERENCE LIST

Antonakis, J., Fenley, M., & Liechti, S. 2011. Can charisma can be taught? Tests of Two Interventions. Academy of Management Learning & Education, 10(3): 374-396.

Bass, B. M., & Bass, R. 2008. The Bass handbook of leadership: Theory, research, and managerial applications (4th ed.). New York: Free Press.

 

 

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 21.02.2013

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Collaboration

Group / person Country
Types of collaboration
Department of Clinical Psychology, University Zurich Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
Seminar series of the Organizatinal Behavior Department at HEC Lausanne Individual talk Does teaching leadership really work? A field experiment comparing evidence-based versus client-centered interventions 21.05.2015 Lausanne, Switzerland Dietz Maura;
LEAP: Expert group meeting in experimental leadership project Individual talk Teaching charisma 16.12.2013 Aarhus, Denmark Antonakis John;


Communication with the public

Communication Title Media Place Year
Media relations: print media, online media La science du charisme avec John Antonakis, partie 1 Podcast Science Western Switzerland International 2015
Media relations: print media, online media La science du charisme avec John Antonakis, partie 2 Podcast Science Western Switzerland International 2015

Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
149416 Psychological and physiological consequences of exposure to mass media in young women - the role of moderators 01.01.2014 Project funding (Div. I-III)

Abstract

The amount of resources invested in leadership development is substantial because of the widely-held belief that leaders are important contributors to the effective functioning of teams and organizations (Bass & Bass, 2008). Thus, there is a need to develop evidence-based approaches to leadership development. We propose to use a cognitive-behavioral approach to changing leader behavior. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) interventions have a strong theoretical and empirical base and should go beyond “standard” behavioral-change interventions that are currently used by industrial psychologists; a CBT intervention should be particularly useful in helping participants to learn to deal with what we refer to as “leader blockages,” unwanted behaviors that increase autonomous arousal and inhibit the development and maintenance of appropriate leader behaviors. This study will be a 2x2 longitudinal field experiment (with pretests and two posttests), where we fully cross a CBT intervention with a standard leadership training intervention; in addition, we will also use an SMS intervention (after establishing the first posttest baseline) as a booster. Our sample will also be unique in that we will use practicing managers. We anticipate finding that a CBT intervention complementing a traditional leadership intervention will engender a higher rate of leadership skills learning, and a lower level of stress and better leader performance as compared to the standard approaches (used alone); we also expect to find an effect for a simple SMS booster intervention. We will also examine the impact of the intervention on physiological measures. This study will be one of the first to explicitly use a leadership behavior change approach based on CBT coupled with a solid application of leadership practices; the research team is also unique in that it includes an expert in leadership, an expert in CBT, and a collaborator who is an expert in human behavioral neurobiology.
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