The relationship between self-monitoring and leadership in student project groups

Judith A. Kolb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


High self-monitoring individuals respond to cues from others and adapt their self-presentations to suit their audience. Since one of the goals of this behavior is to create a favorable impression in the audience, self-monitoring has been identified as a factor that might be related to an individual's being perceived as a leader. Although several studies have revealed a significant relationship between self-monitoring and leader emergence, relatively few have examined the relationship outside the laboratory setting. The purpose of the two studies reported in this article was to examine whether self-reported scores on a measure of self-monitoring would be related to leader emergence in student groups working on realistic, sustained projects. Study One revealed a low, but significant, correlation between self-monitoring and leader emergence. Study Two found a negligible relationship in the overall sample, but a significant moderate correlation in a group of preferred leaders who were examined separately. The variation in magnitude of correlations in the overall sample seemed to be explained by fluctuations in correlations for females. The relationship between self-monitoring and males remained at a low but stable level over the two studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)264-282
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Business Communication
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1998

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Business, Management and Accounting (miscellaneous)
  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance (miscellaneous)


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