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Dissertation Abstract

The Effects of Leader Task-Oriented Behavior on Employee Performance

Evelyn Y. Jenkins
April 2010

Service-oriented employees play a critical role in building customer relationships. Their service performance or behavior displayed while serving and helping customers directly influence customer satisfaction and loyalty, as well as an organization's reputation. Therefore, it is critical that leaders be keenly aware of what is happening within their organization and interact with employees in ways that foster employee interest in providing high-quality service to customers. Leadership literature has suggested that relationship-oriented approaches as transformational leadership and the quality of leader-follower dyadic relationships account for significant aspects of the effect of leadership across contexts. However, this perspective often neglects to consider the specific task-oriented leadership behavior that may be required to direct and facilitate the efforts of employees in specific contexts. In other words, the task-oriented leader behavior needed to help employees do a better job in their assignments may have more effect on employee behavior and performance than do such leadership elements as transformational behavior and leader-member exchange. This study examined the extent to which leader task-oriented behavior uniquely contributes to the explanation and enhancement of service employees' organizational citizenship behavior.