ABSTRACT

The relationship between buyers and sellers is changing into a long-term relationship. A number of distribution channel researchers have determined that the behavior of distribution channel members can be characterized by relational exchanges. The members of relational distribution channels may be perceived as strategic partners; however, even within these arrangements, member asymmetries may exist, which can create unequal distributions of power and dependence. Thus, as all distribution channel members may not be equal in power, it is possible that a less-dependent channel leader may emerge. Therefore, leadership in distribution channels is a very important variable. Distribution channel leadership can be defined as the activities undertaken by the distribution channel leader to influence the marketing programs and strategies of channel members. A distribution channel’s performance is influenced by the leadership style of the channel leader. Although research on channel leadership styles can be broadly categorized, many researchers have dealt with analyzing distribution channel leadership by using the power-influence approach, which includes looking at variables, such as power, power base, and influence strategies. Moreover, they have examined the direct relationship between leadership styles and performance. Many distribution channel scholars have attempted to justify the application of leadership styles identified in alternative leadership theories to the inter-organizational context of distribution channels. They have made suggestions regarding how great the usefulness of leadership style as a strategy is to secure the compliance of distribution channel members and have conceptually and empirically linked it to channel-related phenomena, such as manifest conflict, cooperation, channel efficiency, and effectiveness. However, as few empirical studies have examined the antecedents and consequences of leadership styles, research on leadership style can be considered nascent. Thus, it is required to investigate the antecedents and consequences of the leadership style of a distribution channel leader. This study aims to empirically identify whether there are influences of the antecedents of leadership on two different leadership styles, and to reveal whether these leadership styles induce any consequences. The research subjects were 220 franchisees. Research findings are as follows:First, the results show a positive effect of technological capability on transformational relationships. However, it does not have a significant effect on transactional leadership. Second, innovation-oriented organizational culture has negatively influenced both leaderships. However, task-oriented organizational culture positively and significantly influenced both forms of leadership. Third, the ethics of leaders has influenced both leadership styles positively and significantly. Fourth, regarding consequences, transformational leadership strengthens financial performances, whereas it weakens relational citizenship behaviors. However, transactional leadership positively influences relational citizenship behavior whilst negatively affecting financial performance.

KEYWORD

organizational culture, ethics, technological capability, leadership styles, performances

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