Date of Completion


Embargo Period



leadership, social relations, interpersonal dynamics, leader self-regulation, multi-source feedback

Major Advisor

Robert A. Henning

Associate Advisor

Janet Barnes-Farrell

Associate Advisor

Allan H. Church

Field of Study



Doctor of Philosophy

Open Access

Open Access


The present study challenges conventional use of multi-source feedback (MSF) assessment data for both leader differentiation and leader development purposes in a real organizational setting. Leadership theory was considered from an individual differences as well as a relational process perspective to investigate whether conventional MSF scoring provides adequate information regarding social processes of leadership, and whether analyzing MSF data with the Social Relations Model (SRM) provides better insights into relational processes of leadership and leader self-awareness. Application of item response theory indicated that MSF assessment items do not provide sufficient differentiation among average and above-average ability leaders. Furthermore, analysis of SRM variance components suggest that ratings of leader behavior may be subject to more substantial rating bias than has previously been estimated. Incorporating leader effectiveness outcomes in the SRM also shed light on variability in leader self-ratings and the relationship between leader self-enhancement and leader effectiveness outcomes. Results suggest that a more balanced approach to leader development may be needed in organizations to promote leader self regulation. Practical implications for organizations and directions for future research are described.