Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management, August 2004 v 11 i 2 p 139 (10) Leadership in the hospitality industry: Boadecia vs. Attila -- bring it on! Paul Whitelaw; Romana Morda. The need for high-quality leaders in the hospitality industry has been readily recognised and is seen as critical to the long-term well-being of the industry. In recent years, the industry has undergone something of a sea change in its gender composition, with increasing numbers of females graduating from hospitality and tourism management courses.
This suggests that the gender composition of managerial ranks is likely to change in the medium term, with concurrent changes in the typical leadership style valued in the industry. This article seeks to explore and quantify the differences in gender-based perceptions of leadership styles and outcomes in the hospitality industry. Using the Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ; Bass & Avolio, 1995), a well-established self-administered instrument, the researchers used a 'snowballing' technique to recruit a self-selected sample of 264 hospitality employees. These employees work in a variety of sectors in the hospitality industry, including large international-style hotels, small franchised motels, food and beverage operations and contract catering, and at levels ranging from junior staff to senior property and site managers. The data indicated that despite their similarities, there were a number of subtle but significant differences between males and females in terms of the behaviour's used and the extent to which various behaviour's contributed to successful leadership outcomes, One potentially confounding result was the high emphasis placed upon the 'contingent reward leadership style' by females and may be explained by the female's desire for clear, open and transparent communication. More generally, the differences between males and females were manifested in the form of the males placing greater emphasis on 'confronting' and 'sporting' leadership styles while the females placed greater emphasis on leadership styles which are built upon clear and concise communication and a greater focus on personal consideration for the team members.
However, these subtle differences warrant further investigation -- possibly using a more holistic approach-such as a 360 degree assessment or semi-structured interviews. This study sought to explore and quantify the differences in gender-based perceptions of leadership styles and outcomes in the hospitality industry. Leadership studies in the hospitality industry have tended to focus on identifying the personality traits of effective leaders (Berger, Ferguson, & Woods, 1989; Bond, 1998; Cichy, Sciarini & Patton, 1992; Cichy & Schmidgall, 1996; Greger & Peterson, 2000). Bond (1998, p. 1104) examined the style of leadership shown and valued in the hospitality industry arguing that there were two types of leaders: 'those in the hotel business and those in the business of hotels'. Leaders in the hotel industry focus on the needs of employees and the provision of a high-quality service to guests.
These leaders are also described as charismatic. In comparison, leaders in the business of hotels (such as leaders of hotel real-estate investment trusts) were found to possess exceptional financial skills. To succeed in the hospitality industry, Bond (1998) contends that leaders needed to combine strong interpersonal skills with sound business knowledge and hotel operational skills -- in effect, arguing that a mix of transactional and transformational leadership skills are needed to succeed in the hospitality field. This article seeks to identify and assess the existence of gender differences in these leadership styles among hospitality professionals. Transactional and Transformational Leadership Extending on the work of Bums (1978), who was one of the first theorists to distinguish between transactional and transformational leadership, Bass and his colleagues (Bass, 1997; Bass & Avolio, 1994) have developed a comprehensive model of these two forms of leadership.
In its present form, the model consists of three transactional-leadership dimensions and five transformational-leadership dimensions (Antonakis, Avolio, & Svasubramaniam, 2003). Transactional leaders are said to focus on the present rather than the future and use organisational rewards and punishment to influence subordinates. The three transactional leadership factors specifically delineated in Bass' model are contingent reward leadership, management by exception (active) and management by exception (passive). Contingent reward leadership refers to leaders clarifying role and task expectations and rewarding subordinates for compliance or achievement of set tasks.
The management by exception factor refers to leader behaviour's with regard to monitoring subordinates' performance. Leaders may take an active role in 'trouble shooting' and taking corrective action when performance standards are not being met, or they may respond more passively and wait until errors occur and then take action (Antonakis, Scandura, & Pillai, 2003; Bass & Avolio, 1994; Bass, 1997; Tejada et al. , 2001). In contrast to transactional leaders, transformational leaders are said to focus on the future and inspire followers to sacrifice self-interest for the achievement of organisational goals. Bass (1997) describes five transformational leadership dimensions: idealized influence (attributed); idealized influence (behaviour); inspirational motivation; intellectual stimulation; and individualized consideration. The idealized influence construct refers to leaders being perceived as trustworthy, charismatic and visionary (attributes) and also engaging in actions consistent with these attributes (behaviour's).
Therefore, leaders are perceived as behaving in an ethical manner in the pursuit of their vision. The dimension inspirational motivation is evident when leaders inspire followers to perform beyond normal expectations. This motivation stems from the leader's ability to communicate a vision to followers and imbue them with the confidence to pursue this vision. The intellectual stimulation dimension refers to the leader's ability to challenge subordinates and encourage them to think more creatively. The final transformational leadership dimension, individualized consideration, is evident when subordinates feel that their leaders are conscious of and respond to their individual needs (Bass & Avolio, 1994; Bass, 1997; Tejada et al. , 2001; Antonakis et al.
, 2003). It should be noted that this is a multi factor model of leadership, and thus it is feasible for a manager to exhibit all nine different leadership styles. The critical point is that, as with personality and psychological type, managers and leaders will tend to develop preferences and habits and behaviour's and thus a typical leadership style. As Table 1 demonstrates, the transactional leadership styles place considerable emphasis on a bureaucratic approach to leadership and management. In contrast, the transformational leadership styles place considerable emphasis on the leader's personal qualities in transforming the team members. Transactional and Transformational Leadership Within the Hospitality Industry In contrast to Bond's (1998) research, that indicated that both transactional and transformational leadership was needed for success in the hospitality field, a review of leadership research in the hospitality sector indicates that traits consistent with transformational leadership appear to be more highly valued (Cichy et al.
, 1992; Cichy & Schmidgall, 1996; Greger & Peterson, 2000; Tracey & Hinkin, 1994). Cichy et al. (1992) surveyed 51 top food-service leaders to investigate respondents' perceptions of the traits associated with effective leadership. The qualities that these leaders thought to be important included vision, a strong personal value or belief system, flexibility, an ability to make desired outcomes tangible, encouragement of risk-taking and listening skills. The foundations of leadership were summarise d as consisting of trust in subordinates, an ability to provide an inspiring vision, communication and perseverance.
In a later study, Cichy and Schmidgall (1996) surveyed financial executives in the hotel industry and found similar results to that of Cichy et al. (1992). The researchers surveyed 181 financial executives in leadership positions. The qualities that the respondents associated with effective leadership in the hospitality industry are consistent with transformational leadership dimensions and included flexibility, vision, a strong personal value or belief system, an ability to make desired outcomes tangible and to listen to and empower employees. These identified qualities were quite similar to those identified by food-service leaders (Cichy et al. , 1992).
Therefore, there is some consistency in how effective leadership is perceived by different occupational sectors within the hospitality industry. Greger and Peterson (2000) interviewed six top lodging operators as to their views on leadership for the new millennium. The results were quite similar to those found by Cichy and fellow researchers. A key leadership component was vision.
These Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) perceived effective leaders as being future-oriented, innovative, visionary and, most importantly, they were able to communicate their vision to employees. In addition, they maintained a positive organisational culture emphasis ing the empowerment of employees. The CEOs interviewed by Greger and Peterson (2000) were also concerned with the satisfaction of guests, and investors' needs, as well as employee needs. In satisfying the needs of these different parties, the leaders identified the importance of continuing to be innovative, to assess their own performance and the need to use technology to improve the quality of service in their hotels.
It is apparent from a review of leadership research undertaken in the hospitality industry that there is a demand for leaders who demonstrate transformational leadership skills (Cichy et al. , 1992; Tracey & Hinkin, 1994; Cichy & Schmidgall, 1996; Greger & Peterson, 2000). In particular, there was a strong emphasis on the transformational leadership traits that are consistent with the idealized influence, inspirational motivation, and individualized consideration leadership dimensions outlined by Bass (1997). However, the nature of hospitality work itself may indeed suit a more transactional form of leadership. For instance, the management of hotels, which tend to be highly bureaucratic organisations, has favoured a more classic managerial or transactional style of leadership (Hornsey & Dann, 1984).
Further, the hospitality industry places considerable emphasis on the consistent provision of high quality services -- a proposition based upon the need for high levels of compliance with operational standards. Clearly, a strong focus on the transactional style is required in this area. In particular, the contingent reward style creates the atmosphere of strict compliance with operating rules and procedures, management by exception (active) focuses energy on the development and implementation of prescriptive operating policies and procedures and finally, management by exception (passive) provides the stability to maintain close compliance with the policies and procedures. Therefore there is an interesting dilemma facing the hospitality industry -- transformational leaders may be highly valued by subordinates but transactional leadership skills are also needed to maintain the consistency of standards which lead to success.
A contention supported by Bond's (1998) research is that leaders need both strong interpersonal skills and sound hotel operational skills to maximis e effectiveness. Implicit in Bond's comment about sound hotel operational skills is the strict adherence to the well-established policies and procedures, which produce consistency of quality. The current study sought to further clarify the support of hospitality industry employees for different dimensions of transactional and transformational leadership, and investigated whether there is recognition of the need for both transactional and transformational leadership. A further issue that needs to be addressed in ascertaining the type of leadership valued by hospitality industry employees is the possibility that there are gender differences in the leadership styles valued and exhibited by males and females. The question of gender differences in leadership styles has attracted some controversy. Manning (2002) found that there were no gender differences in the style of leadership exhibited by managers in her study.
Both sexes in top management roles perceived themselves as more transformational than transactional leaders. However, research conducted by Alimo-Metcalfe (1995) and Eagly et al. (2003) found that females, in comparison to males, were more likely to exhibit and value a transformational style of leadership. However, Eagly, Johannesen-Schmidt, van Engen, and Vikenburg (2003) also found that female leaders were more likely to engage in contingent reward behaviour's, a category of transactional leadership behaviour. Possible gender differences in the preference for, and the value placed on, different leadership styles becomes a more pertinent issue when the changing face of hospitality management is taken into account.
In the last few decades, universities have seen a major increase in the number of women enrolled in hospitality courses (Astin, 1990) and the work of Gillet and Whitelaw (2003) suggests that the industry is moving from a situation of male-dominated senior management to one where the brightest and best students entering the industry are female. Furthermore, these females are exhibiting higher levels of ambition and career drive than their older sisters. Gillet and Whitelaw suggest that in the long term, the senior ranks of hospitality management will reflect a more balanced gender distribution than is currently the case. This work then raises a question as to whether females view leadership in the same light as males, and, if they do not, what implications this has for the development of long-term management styles in the hospitality industry. In particular, given the constraints of the need to strictly adhere to extant policies and procedures in order to produce consistent service standards, will female hospitality managers exhibit higher levels of transactional leadership? Or will they try to 'break the mould' and exhibit more, supposedly female, transformational styles of leadership? Methodology Data Collection Instrument Data were gathered by way of a self-administered instrument. The Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ; Leader Form 5 x-Short; Bass & Avolio, 1995) is a 45-item, self-assessment instrument which an individual's self-perceived leadership style in terms of the three transactional and five transformational leader styles, and performance in terms of three dimensions: employee satisfaction, group effectiveness and group extra effort.
The instrument has been validated in a number of extensive, large-scale studies in many industrial, cultural and national settings (Bass, 1990; House & Shamir, 1993; Howell & Avolio, 1993). Sampling Participants were recruited using a 'snowballing' technique whereby hospitality industry employees and managers were invited to complete the survey. These respondents were then invited to encourage their colleagues, work associates and friends who also work in the hospitality industry to complete the survey. These participants were then, in turn, invited to encourage their colleagues in the hospitality industry to participate in the research. All of the respondents were currently employed in the hospitality industry in Melbourne, Australia. The analysis sought to identify how managers (both male and female) constructed their perception of leadership.
First, using gender as a fixed factor, a MANOVA was used to identify whether the two genders generalised their under standing of leadership in the same fashion. Subsequent t tests were then used to assess differences between males and females across the nine individual leadership styles. Next, the respondents's elf-assessed leadership styles (in terms of the three transactional and five transformational factors) were regressed (using stepwise regression) against the three different measures of leadership outcomes (employee satisfaction, group effectiveness and group extra effort) to produce a model of how both males and females construct leadership. The resulting regression models, and their beta values, were then compared to identify the existence of significant differences between males and females in their construction of leadership style. Participants The sample consisted of 264 self-selected participants, of whom 106 were male and 158 female.
All participants were employed in a variety of sectors in the hospitality industry ranging from international-standard, chained, five-star 400 room properties through to franchised motels, food and beverage operations and contract catering sites. In addition, the respondents' employment positions ranged from line staff with no customer contact (such as kitchen hands) through to senior managers with an organisation-wide focus (hotel general managers). A series of Chi-square tests failed to identify any differences in the sample with regard to the distribution of gender in terms of industry segment and rank. To ensure that this rejection was not an artefact of some of the small cells, the data was recoded by collapsing each rank according to whether the respondent had customer contact or not. Furthermore, this approach also ensured that each cell had a minimum of 12 respondents, as seen in Table 3.
The subsequent reanalysis also rejected the proposition that there were gender differences across the ranks (f = 1. 532, df = 5, p = . 909). Thus, the focus of this article is explicitly on gender differences. Results First, a MANOVA was conducted of the three transactional, five transformational and three outcomes using gender as the fixed factor. The result, using Wilks' Lambda, identified a significant model (f = 4.
298, df = 11, p = . 000). The subsequent t tests (see Table 4) identified only two significant items. Males scored higher than females on both of the management by exception (passive and active) dimensions. Next, the three transactional and five transformational items were regressed against each of the three outcomes (effectiveness, satisfaction and extra effort) using simple regression for both males and then for females. The results are presented in Tables 5 A (males) and 5 B (females).
Finally, the three transactional and five transformational items were then regressed against the three outcomes (effectiveness, satisfaction and extra effort) using stepwise regression. The following tables (Tables 6 A, B and C) highlight the results showing the retained items from the stepwise regression and the standardized beta weights for each leadership outcome for both males and females. Discussion Overall, the results indicate that there were similarities in the self-perceived style of leadership exhibited by male and female hospitality-industry personnel. The only differences found were that males were more likely to see themselves engaging in both transactional forms of leadership behaviour's (management by exception -- passive and active) than females. Therefore, males more than females perceived that part of their role as leaders was to take proactive steps to prevent errors from occurring and to also take corrective actions once errors had occurred. This finding is consistent with past research (Alimo-Metcalfe, 1995; Eagly et al.
, 2003) that found that there were only small differences in the style of leadership exhibited by male and female leaders and that males tend to favour a transactional style of leadership. Despite the findings that there were only small differences in the leadership behaviour's exhibited by males and females, results of the regression analyses revealed differences in the models of leadership valued by males and females. These models identified the leadership factors that were perceived to contribute to effectiveness, satisfaction and extra effort by both males and females. Both males and females believed that a mix of transformational and transactional leadership behaviour's contributed to effectiveness, satisfaction and extra effort. This result is consistent with previous research (Bond, 1998). In particular, the transformational factors, idealized influence (attributes) individualized consideration, and the transactional factor (contingent rewards) were seen as important in contributing to job satisfaction and the willingness to put in extra effort.
Visionary, trustworthy and ethical leadership behaviour's, in which the leader was able to clearly articulate task expectations and cared about the individual needs of subordinates, were highly valued by both sexes. However, females more than males tended to emphasise the importance of clear role expectations and rewards for task accomplishment (contingent rewards) in contributing to satisfaction and extra effort. In contrast, males tended to emphasise the importance of inspirational motivation and intellectual stimulation in leading to satisfaction and extra effort. It could be interpreted that females' preference for contingent reward identifies a desire to establish clear and unambiguous guidelines, particularly with regard to group satisfaction. This may be an artefact of women being a minority in senior management positions and their need to overcome the 'boy's club' and its various forms of informal communication. That is, because of their minority status, and exclusion from the 'boys' club', the female managers may have sought to address potential inequities by engaging in clear, explicit and transparent communications with their staff.
Further, it could be suggested that males' preference for intellectual stimulation and inspirational motivation may also be reflective of a certain '': intellectual stimulation can often manifest itself in the form of 'challenging' team members while inspirational motivation has certain 'sporty' overtones. As such, both behaviour's may not be considered a traditional female behaviour. However, the MLQ instrument is not sufficiently detailed to fully explore these subtle interpretations. Conclusions and Recommendations for Future Research The results suggest that overall there were similarities in the leadership behaviour's displayed and valued by males and females. There was recognition, by both male and female hospitality industry employees, that transformational and transactional leadership behaviour's were important.
But there were also subtle differences in how they perceived these styles of leadership contributed to effectiveness and satisfaction. Therefore, there is a need for further research examining the possible reasons for these subtle differences and the implications of these differences for work group and organisational effectiveness. A possible avenue for future research may be the use of qualitative methodologies (such as interviews) to explore in greater depth the reasons for the differences found in the leadership styles valued by males and females. In addition, further assessment in the form of 360 degree evaluations using a variant of the MLQ, including interviews with participants's uperiors, fellow employees and subordinates could be used to validate participants's elf-assessments of their leadership style. Table 1 Leadership Style and Typical Behaviour Leadership Style Typical Behaviour Laissez Faire Allows the staff to do as they please.
No leadership exhibitedTransactionalContingent Reward A highly bureaucratic style focused on a contractual relationship between manager and staff. A strong emphasis on compliance with rules and regulations. Management by Exception A highly bureaucratic style focused on -- Passive correcting mistakes only after they a remade. Take no action until complaints are made.
Management by Exception A highly bureaucratic style focused on -- Active proactively moro-managing mistakes out of the system. A strong emphasis on reporting mistakes and errors and quickly implementing corrective action. Transformational Idealised Influence The leader leads by clear and explicit -- Behaviour example. Idealised Influence The leader leads by the demonstration of -- Attributes specific values and qualities. Inspirational Motivation The leader inspires the staff with his or her vision and commitment and energy and enthusiasm. Intellectual Stimulation The leader encourages professional and personal development in the staff by challenging them.
Individualised Consideration The leader treats the staff with care and respect as fellow humans. Table 2 Employment Rank by Gender Employment Rank Male Female Total Senior manager with an organisation-wide focus 14 19 33 Middle level manager with a department-level focus 22 29 51 Line manager with some direct customer contact 12 16 28 Line manager with no direct customer contact 2 2 Line supervisor with some direct customer contact 14 23 37 Line supervisor with no direct customer contact 3 1 4 Line staff with some customer contact 26 46 72 Line staff with no customer contact 4 4 Not currently working 15 18 33 Total 106 158 264 Note: Chi-square f = 7. 35. df = 8, p = 499 Table 3 Re-coded Employment Rank by Gender Employment Rank Male Female Total Senior manager with an organisation-wide focus 14 19 33 Middle level manager with a department-level focus 22 29 51 Line manager with some direct customer contact 12 18 30 Line supervisor with some direct customer contact 17 24 41 Line staff with some customer contact 26 50 76 Not currently working 15 18 33 Total 106 158 264 Note: f = 1. 532, df = 5, p = 909 Table 4 Results of t Tests Item Mean Square F p Contingent reward. 06.
15. 702 Management by exception -- passive 4. 97 1. 52. 001 Management by exception -- active 9. 69 17.
03. 000 Idealised influence -- behaviour. 04. 12.
726 Idealised influence-attribute 1. 36 3. 69. 056 Inspirational motivation. 01.
03. 862 Intellectual stimulation. 13. 38. 540 Individual consideration.
69 2. 09. 149 Effectiveness. 01. 02. 891 Satisfaction 1.
31 2. 95. 087 Extra effort 1. 09 1. 89. 170 Table 5 Regression Co-Efficients for Males Leadership Factor Effectiveness Satisfaction Contingent reward.
368 . 062 Management by exception -- passive. 078. 042 Management by exception -- active -. 005.
063 Idealised influence -- behaviour -. 092 -. 006 Idealised influence -- attributed. 122.
250 Inspirational motivation. 135. 132 Intellectual stimulation. 156.
082 Individual consideration. 108. 272 Leadership Factor Extra Effort Contingent reward. 189 Management by exception -- passive. 032 Management by exception -- active. 071 Idealised influence -- behaviour -.
041 Idealised influence -- attributed. 343 Inspirational motivation -. 008 Intellectual stimulation. 206 Individual consideration. 050 Note. p = 05, p = 00 Table 5 Regression Coefficients for Females Leadership Factor Effectiveness Satisfaction Contingent reward.
357 . 215 Management by exception -- passive -. 010. 021 Management by exception -- active -. 010 -. 004 Idealised influence -- behaviour -.
047 -. 018 Idealised influence -- attributed. 354 . 302 Inspirational motivation. 088.
083 Intellectual stimulation -. 014 -. 005 Individual consideration. 120. 235 Leadership Factor Extra Effort Contingent reward. 345 Management by exception -- passive.
021 Management by exception -- active. 012 Idealised influence -- behaviour. 002 Idealised influence -- attributed. 234 Inspirational motivation. 084 Intellectual stimulation.
028 Individual consideration. 253 Note: p = 05, p = 00 Table 6 Selected Standard Betas for Effectiveness for Males and FemalesMalesItem Std Beta Contingent reward. 495 Intellectual stimulation. 248 FemalesItem Std BetaIdealised influence -- attribute. 439 Contingent reward. 385 Table 6 Selected Standard Betas for Satisfaction for Males and FemalesMalesItem Std BetaIdealised influence -- attribute.
265 Individualised consideration. 296 Inspirational motivation. 200 FemalesItem Std BetaIdealised influence -- attribute. 323 Individualised consideration. 237 Contingent reward. 229 Table 6 Selected Standard Betas for Extra Effort for Males and FemalesMalesItem Std BetaIdealised influence -- attribute.
341 Intellectual stimulation. 229 Contingent reward. 232 FemalesItem Std Beta Contingent reward. 383 Individualised consideration.
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