Mahfooz A. Ansari, Ph.D. , University of Lethbridge, Canada
Leading by Exchanging Currencies
Leadership is “one of the most observed and least understood phenomena on earth” (Burns, 1978, p. 2), and this has always been, and probably always be, an important factor in human affairs (Kotter, 1988). A review of the current literature indicates that extensive research on leadership has rapidly accumulated during the past 70 years to understand leader behavior directed at accomplishing individual and collective goals. In course of these research efforts, many different leadership theories have been advanced. Of these, the one often-cited and widely-used theory is the theory of LeaderMember Exchange (LMX). Given that leadership is a reciprocal influence process, the quality of LMX relationship is central to organizational functioning. The exchange relationship is a powerful lens that significantly shapes the experience of work. The lens is bidirectional in nature; exchange relations shape not only the subordinate’s experience of work, but also that of the supervisor. While multiple lenses are possible, the leadership lens is not static, but dynamic over time. Drawing on social exchange, norms of reciprocity, and role theories, the LMX theory focuses on leader-member dyads and spins around four interrelated currencies: (a) Contribution–perception of the current level of work-oriented activity each member of the dyad puts forth (e.g., the subordinate is willing to apply extra efforts beyond those normally required, to meet his/her supervisor’s work goals), (b) Professional Respect–perception of the degree to which each member of the dyad has built a reputation of work-related activity (e.g., the subordinate is impressed with his/her supervisor’s knowledge of his/her job), (c) Affect–the mutual affection members of the dyad have for each other based on interpersonal attraction (e.g., the subordinate likes his/her supervisor very much as a person), and (d) Loyalty–the expression of public support (e.g., the supervisor would defend the subordinate to others in the organization if the subordinate made an honest mistake). The first two currencies indicate on-the-job behavior and the last two involve off-the-job behavior. The presentation therefore spins around the development and consequences of exchange relationships. As well, the exchange relationship acts as a mechanism and boundary condition of several other predictors of leadership effectiveness in organizations. After reviewing what we know about LMX, we will focus on “what is hot and what is not” currently. That is, we identify several directions for future research, such as the exchange lens (perspectives), the nature of work outcomes, and the levels of analysis. Implications for practice include the development of high-quality exchange relationships between supervisors and their subordinates.
Biographical Details:
Mahfooz A. Ansari is a Professor of International Management and Human Resources Management (HRM) & Organizational Studies at the University of Lethbridge (U of L), Canada. He is currently an Area Chair of HRM & Organizational Studies. Prior to his current academic rank of professor at U of L, he held faculty positions at several other academic institutions including the University Science Malaysia, the UIA International University Malaysia, the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, the University of Magadh, and A. N. S. Institute of Social Studies Patna. He also held visiting professorship position at several places including Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, King Abdul Aziz Univesity Jeddah, UIA International University Malaysia, University of Malaya Malaysia, University of Technology MARA Malaysia, and the University of Calicut.
Dr. Ansari earned his master’s and doctorate degrees in Psychology (in Industrial & Organizational Psychology area) from the University of Kansas and Patna University, respectively. He is a recipient of several recognitions and awards. These include the Fulbright Hays Award (1978), Excellent Service Recognition by the University Science Malaysia (2004), and the University of Lethbridge Scholar Award (2009-2011). He has also received several awards from the Academy of Management, including Carolyn Dexter Best Paper Award (2004), the Best Paper from an Under-represented Country Award (2004), the Best Paper Award Finalist (2005), the Carolyn Dexter Best International Paper Award Finalist (2006), the selection of a paper as one of the Best International Papers and included in the Best Papers Proceedings (2007), the selection of a paper as one of the Best Papers and included in the Best Papers Proceedings (2011). As well, he received an Outstanding Paper Award at the Emerald Literati Network Awards for Excellence (2011).
Dr. Ansari is a member of the Academy of Management, American Psychological Association, Society for Industrial & Organizational Psychology, Administrative Sciences Association of Canada, Canadian Psychological Association, Canadian Society for Industrial & Organizational Psychology, International Leadership Association, and International Association of Applied Psychology, and is listed in the Harvard International Directory of Business and Management Scholars.
Dr. Ansari has over 30 years of active teaching, consultancy, and research experience in the fields of Organizational Behavior, Human Resources Management, International Management, and Leadership. His current program of research focuses on leadership and spins around three inter-related streams of research: (a) The Power-Influence Approach to Leadership, (b) Leader-Member Exchange (LMX), and (c) the Cultural Context of Leadership and Social Influence. Dr. Ansari has authored two books–“Managing People at Work” and “Managing Dyadic Interactions in Organizational Leadership”—both published by Sage in 1990 and 2000, respectively. To his credit, he has over 80 refereed journal articles and has delivered over 100 presentations at several professional conferences. His work has appeared in such journals as Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Journal of International Business Studies, Human Relations, Management and Organization Review, Journal of Business Ethics, Leadership & Organization Development Journal, Journal of Applied Social Psychology, and Journal of Social Psychology. His current editorial roles include serving on the Editorial Review Board of the Journal of World Business, Leadership and Organizational Studies, FWU Journal of Social Sciences, Business and Management Quarterly Review, and Pakistan Journal of Psychological Research. Dr. Ansari has supervised some 25 doctoral dissertations (leading to PhD/DBA degree) and 50 master’s theses (leading to MBA/MSc degree). He conducts consulting and training programs on a fairly, regular basis with MNCs and government sectors.


S. Akbar Zaidi,Professor of Middle Eastern, South Asian and African Studies and of International and Public Affairs
Still Dismal One Decade Later? Social Sciences in Pakistan Since 2002
A decade ago an argument was made that the social sciences in Pakistan were in a ‘dismal state’. Much has happened in the realm of the development of higher education, and also as a consequence of social and political change in Pakistan since then. The growth and dominance of the Higher Education Commission, the huge increase in private Universities many having social science departments, and other factors, have all changed the map of higher education in Pakistan. The paper will try to explore whether these factors have helped improve the state of social science in Pakistan. The paper will be exploratory and will present some tentative ideas and hypotheses which need to be tested, rather than be based on any empirical findings, the need for which seems most urgent in order to come up with a clearer understanding of where we stand more than a decade later.
Biographical Details:
S Akbar Zaidi is Pakistan’s well known political economists. His area of interests are political economy, development, in social sciences more generally, and increasingly, in History.
He has written over seventy academic articles in international journals and as chapters in books, as well as numerous books and monographs. He is author of Military, Civil Society and Democratization in Pakistan (2011), The New Development Paradigm: Papers on Institutions, NGOs, Gender and Local Government (1999), and Pakistan’s Economic and Social Development: The Domestic, Regional and Global Context (2004). His latest book is Issues in Pakistan’s Economy: A Political Economy Perspective published by Oxford University Press in early 2015. He has taught at Karachi University and at Johns Hopkins University, and is currently a Visiting Professor at Columbia University, New York, where he has a joint position at SIPA (the School of International and Public Affairs), and at MESAAS (the Department of Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies). He is also an Adjunct Professor at IBA, Karachi.