Integrity's place among the character strengths of middle-level managers and top-level executives

William A. Gentry, Kristin L. Cullen, John J. Sosik, Jae Uk Chun, Christopher R. Leupold, Scott Tonidandel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


One purpose of this study was to extend integrity research in organizations into the ranks of middle management. We therefore examined whether middle-level managers' behavioral manifestations of integrity related to ratings of their performance. Results of hierarchical regression analysis indicated that direct report ratings of a middle-level manager's integrity were positively related to boss ratings of that manager's performance. A second purpose of this study was to understand differences in integrity's relative importance to performance among other character strengths, and as a function of context (e.g., managerial level). We extend research in this area by showing, through relative weight analysis, that integrity was relatively less important to middle-level managers' current performance compared to other character strengths (e.g., social intelligence). In contrast, integrity was relatively more important for the performance of top-level executives - roles middle-level managers may hold in the future. Implications of these results for future research and practice as well as the current study's limitations are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)395-404
Number of pages10
JournalLeadership Quarterly
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Business and International Management
  • Applied Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


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