Authentic Leadership and Team Innovation Ambidexterity: The Mediating Role of Team Inclusive Climate and The Contingency Role of Cultural Values

Author: Bahmannia, Somayehsadat

Publisher: University of Otago

Type: Thesis

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University of Otago


This study proposes that authentic leaders and team context (team inclusive climate) enable team members to actively engage in both exploratory and exploitative innovation. Also, team’s individualist-collectivist cultural values play an important role in the emergence of the inclusive work environment, as well as exploratory and exploitative innovation at the team level. Using multisource data (team leaders and team members) on 111 teams within 43 Taiwanese companies, and 73 teams within 35 New Zealand companies, the findings of this study reveal that authentic leaders directly and indirectly (through developing the inclusive climate) promote team exploratory and exploitative innovation. Also, team collectivist cultural values strengthen the positive effect of authentic leadership on team members’ shared perception of inclusion in the work environment. Team inclusive climate unfolds its benefits when team members are high on both collectivist and individualist cultural values. More specifically, team inclusive climate is more associated with exploratory innovation when team members hold high individualist cultural values and is more related to exploitative innovation when team members hold high collectivist cultural values. The findings of this study contribute to authentic leadership, innovation ambidexterity, and team climate research by unlocking the ‘black box’ of the relationship between authentic leadership and innovation ambidexterity, and by highlighting a contingency under which authentic leadership and team inclusive climate unfold their benefits. Also, the findings provide evidence that leaders who know their values and transparently act and interact with their subordinates are more able to encourage their subordinates to inclusively integrate their unique talents and skills into the work process, thereby managing the demands of both exploratory and exploitative innovation within a team.

Subjects: “Authentic leadership”, “team innovation ambidexterity”, “team exploratory innovation”, “team exploitative innovation”, “team inclusive climate”, “team individualist-collectivist culture”, Taiwan, “New Zealand”.

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