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Interpersonal Accuracy of Leaders: Effects on Interpersonal Behavior and Interaction Outcomes

English title Interpersonal Accuracy of Leaders: Effects on Interpersonal Behavior and Interaction Outcomes
Applicant Schmid Mast Marianne
Number 159292
Funding scheme Project funding
Research institution Département de comportement organisationnel Faculté des HEC Université de Lausanne
Institution of higher education University of Lausanne - LA
Main discipline Psychology
Start/End 01.03.2016 - 31.10.2019
Approved amount 300'398.00
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Keywords (4)

behavioral adaptability; interpersonal behavior; interpersonal accuracy; social perception

Lay Summary (German)

Lead
Führungspersonen, welche gut darin sind, andere korrekt einzuschätzen (z.B. in Bezug auf ihre Emotionen oder ihre Persönlichkeit), haben zufriedenere Mitarbeiter. Wir untersuchen ob dies daran liegt, dass diese Führungspersonen ihr verbales und nonverbales Verhalten (ihren Führungsstil) individuell an die spezifischen Bedürfnisse ihrer Mitarbeiter anpassen.
Lay summary

Der Erfolg einer Führungsperson hängt unter anderem davon ab, wie gut sie darin ist, andere korrekt einzuschätzen, zum Beispiel die Emotionen von Mitarbeitern richtig einzuschätzen. Die Fähigkeit, andere richtig einzuschätzen in Bezug auf ihre Emotionen, Kognitionen, Gefühle und Persönlichkeit heisst interpersonale Sensitivität („interpersonal accuracy“). Führungspersonen, welche interpersonal sensitiver sind haben Mitarbeiter, welche zufriedener sind. In unserem Forschungsprojekt gehen wir der Frage nach, wie genau der dahinterliegende Mechanismus ausschaut. Wir postulieren, dass interpersonal sensitive Führungspersonen sich in ihrem Verhalten den Besonderheiten der einzelnen Mitarbeiter anpassen („behavioral adaptability“) und deswegen im Schnitt zufriedenere Mitarbeiter haben. Interpersonal sensitive Führungspersonen, so vermuten wir, variieren ihren Führungsstil in Abhängigkeit der Bedürfnisse der einzelnen Mitarbeiter. Dabei beobachten und codieren wir das verbale und nonverbale Verhalten von Führungspersonen, wenn sie mit verschiedenen Mitarbeitern interagieren. 

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 14.04.2015

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Publications

Publication
Power and social information processing
Schmid Mast Marianne, Khademi Mahshid, Palese Tristan (2020), Power and social information processing, in Current Opinion in Psychology, 33, 42-46.
A meta-analysis of the relationship between emotion recognition ability and intelligence
Schlegel Katja, Palese Tristan, Mast Marianne Schmid, Rammsayer Thomas H., Hall Judith A., Murphy Nora A. (2019), A meta-analysis of the relationship between emotion recognition ability and intelligence, in Cognition and Emotion, 1-23.
Predictive Validity of Thin-Slice Nonverbal Behavior from Social Interactions
Murphy Nora A., Hall Judith A., Ruben Mollie A., Frauendorfer Denise, Schmid Mast Marianne, Johnson Kirsten E., Nguyen Laurent (2018), Predictive Validity of Thin-Slice Nonverbal Behavior from Social Interactions, in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 45(7), 983-993.
The Impact of Interpersonal Accuracy on Behavioral Outcomes
Schmid Mast Marianne, Hall Judith A. (2018), The Impact of Interpersonal Accuracy on Behavioral Outcomes, in Current Directions in Psychological Science, 27(5), 309-314.
How Do Different Ways of Measuring Individual Differences in Zero‐Acquaintance Personality Judgment Accuracy Correlate With Each Other?
Hall Judith A., Back Mitja D., Nestler Steffen, Frauendorfer Denise, Schmid Mast Marianne, Ruben Mollie A. (2017), How Do Different Ways of Measuring Individual Differences in Zero‐Acquaintance Personality Judgment Accuracy Correlate With Each Other?, in Journal of Personality, 86(2), 220-232.
Interpersonal Accuracy and Interaction Outcomes: Why and How Reading Others Correctly Has Adaptive Advantages in Social Interactions
PaleseTristan, Schmid MastMarianne, Interpersonal Accuracy and Interaction Outcomes: Why and How Reading Others Correctly Has Adaptive Advantages in Social Interactions, in Sternberg Robert, Kostić Aleksandra (ed.), Palgrave-Macmillan, London, n/a.
What Can we Learn About Others’ Power From Their Emotional Expressions?
PaleseTristan, Schmid MastMarianne, What Can we Learn About Others’ Power From Their Emotional Expressions?, in Hess Ursula, Hareli Shlomo (ed.), Springer Nature, London, n/a.

Collaboration

Group / person Country
Types of collaboration
Tessa West, New York University United States of America (North America)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Katja Schlegel, University of Bern Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Nora Murphy, Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles United States of America (North America)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Floor Rink, University of Groningen Netherlands (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
Judith Hall, Northeastern University United States of America (North America)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
16th conference of the Swiss Psychological Society Talk given at a conference Emotion Recognition and Behavioral Adaptability: To Whom and When are these Skills Related in the Leadership Context? 09.09.2019 Bern, Switzerland Palese Tristan;
19th European Association of Work and Organizational Psychology Congress Poster Leadership Behavioral Flexibility: A Double-Edged Sword for Leaders 29.05.2019 Turin, Italy Palese Tristan;
19th European Association of Work and Organizational Psychology Congress Talk given at a conference The Role of Interpersonal Accuracy for Adaptive Leadership in Women and Men? 29.05.2019 Turin, Italy Palese Tristan;
7th Nonverbal Behavior Preconference of the Conference of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology Talk given at a conference Interpersonal Accuracy and Adaptive Leadership: Does Gender Play a Role? 01.03.2018 Atlanta, United States of America Palese Tristan;
19th Conference of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology Poster Interpersonal Accuracy and Adaptive Leadership: Does Gender Play a Role? 01.03.2018 Atlanta, United States of America Palese Tristan;
15th conference of the Swiss Psychological Society Talk given at a conference Interpersonal Accuracy and Behavioral Adaptability in the Leadership Context: Does Gender Play a Role? 04.09.2017 Lausanne, Switzerland Palese Tristan;


Knowledge transfer events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Date Place Persons involved
Midi égalité Workshop 29.10.2019 Lausanne, Switzerland Palese Tristan; Schmid Mast Marianne;
Mystère de l'UNIL Performances, exhibitions (e.g. for education institutions) 23.05.2019 Lausanne, Switzerland Schmid Mast Marianne; Palese Tristan;
Mystère de l'UNIL Performances, exhibitions (e.g. for education institutions) 02.06.2018 Lausanne, Switzerland Palese Tristan; Schmid Mast Marianne;


Communication with the public

Communication Title Media Place Year
New media (web, blogs, podcasts, news feeds etc.) L’importance du comportement non verbal Western Switzerland 2019
Media relations: print media, online media La recette pour devenir un cadre parfait. Le Temps Western Switzerland 2019
Media relations: print media, online media Le bon leadership s’assimile à un excellent cocktail de compétences. Entreprise Romande Western Switzerland 2019
Media relations: print media, online media Le cocktail du leadership. PME Magazine Western Switzerland 2019
Print (books, brochures, leaflets) Leaderspritz: le cocktail du leadership interpersonnel International 2019
New media (web, blogs, podcasts, news feeds etc.) Quelle est la qualité la plus importante pour être un bon leader ? Western Switzerland 2019
Media relations: print media, online media Dominique préfère... Uniscope Western Switzerland 2016

Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
184858 Behavioral Adaptability 01.09.2020 Project funding
141737 Adaptive Physician-Patient Communication: Physician Interpersonal Sensitivity, Physician Behavioral Variability, and Patient Outcomes 01.10.2012 ProDoc
154101 Perspectives on Interpersonal Accuracy 01.05.2014 Scientific Conferences

Abstract

Research on interpersonal accuracy (individual difference in the ability to correctly assess others’ states and traits) has so far only rarely addressed how this skill affects behavior in a social interaction and interaction outcomes. We investigate the link between interpersonal accuracy and how a person behaves verbally and nonverbally during a social interaction towards different interaction partners and whether this behavior influences the outcome of an interaction (e.g., how satisfied the interaction partner or how good a group performs). The here proposed research also links the field of interpersonal accuracy research to the field of leadership. In the leadership literature, the question of whether a leader’s ability to correctly assess the emotions of others (part of the emotional intelligence concept) affects the quality of his/her leadership (i.e., leader effectiveness) has produced very controversial results. Moreover, the focus on observing and coding actual (verbal and nonverbal) social interaction behavior is a contribution to both research fields. While interpersonal accuracy describes how we cognitively assess others, behavioral adaptability (individual difference in the ability to adapt one’s social interaction behavior to the peculiarities or different needs of each social interaction partner) describes interpersonal accuracy on a behavioral level. Behavioral adaptability is a new concept developed in our laboratory. In the here proposed research, we want to investigate the role and importance of this new concept for interaction outcomes and we also link it to interpersonal accuracy. Overall, we ask two main research questions: 1. Do leaders who are more interpersonally accurate show more behavioral adaptability? 2. Do high interpersonally accurate leaders have more positive interaction outcomes (better satisfaction of the subordinates, better performance of the groups they lead)? We propose 3 studies. Studies 1 and 2 contribute to answering research question 1 and Studies 2 and 3 contribute to responding to research question 2. In Study 1, we aim to replicate results found in a pilot study while at the same time expanding those results. We showed that for women leaders, interpersonal accuracy was positively related to more behavioral adaptability. In other words, women leaders who were good at assessing others’ emotional states also adapted their leadership behavior with respect to how different subordinates function best. In Study 2, we expand Study 1 to the field and test interpersonal accuracy and behavioral adaptability in real managers. Moreover, in Study 2, we will assess leadership effectiveness (satisfaction of the subordinates with the manager). In Study 3, we focus on the second research question and observe whether groups with a leader who is interpersonally accurate perform better than groups with a less interpersonally accurate leader.This research is important because it advances two different fields at the same time and builds a bridge between different research traditions. Interpersonal accuracy is a topic situated in person perception (social psychology) and it has played an important role in the excitement about the emotionally intelligent leader in the leadership literature. Although part of the emotional intelligence concept, accurate emotion recognition, is an aspect of interpersonal accuracy, the methods developed by interpersonal accuracy researchers are typically only rarely used by leadership researchers. The present proposal fills this gap. Moreover, the focus on the observation and coding of actual leader interpersonal behavior has the potential to make a meaningful impact on leadership training and development. If behavioral adaptability is related to better leadership effectiveness, then it might be useful not to train leaders with respect to a specific leadership style, but to train them so that they are able to use different leadership styles and to flexibly adapt their styles according to how each of their subordinates functions best.
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