A Model of Instrumental Networks: The Roles of Socialized Charismatic Leadership and Group Behavior

Published Online:https://doi.org/10.1287/orsc.1100.0604

This article introduces a model of the development of instrumental networks inside organizational groups. We provide a theoretical framework and empirically test a series of hypotheses pertaining to the relationships between socialized charismatic leadership (SCL) and its consequences in terms of cooperative and sanctioning group behavior. We then examine whether these behaviors predict the density of instrumental networks inside groups and, consequently, their performance. Our findings, based on assessments of 70 group leaders and their approximately 500 subordinates, colleagues, and supervisors, show that SCL is associated with heightened levels of cooperation and lower levels of sanctioning in groups. Cooperation, in turn, is associated with the instrumental network density of the group. Our findings also demonstrate that under conditions of physical proximity, instrumental network density predicts group performance. The study provides an understanding of group social psychological processes in relation to the development of instrumental networks inside organizational groups.

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