How leader-member exchange influences effective work behaviors: Social exchange and internal-external efficacy perspectives

Fred O. Walumbwa, Russell Cropanzano, Barry M. Goldman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

69 Scopus citations


In this article, we propose and test an integrative theory of leader-member exchange (LMX) that extends our understanding of the mechanisms affecting LMX and important organizational outcomes. We argue that LMX enhances job performance and organizational citizenship behaviors (OCBs) through 2 sets of processes. As a result of a social exchange process, high LMX managers encourage reciprocal obligations. These obligations are manifested as subordinate commitment to their supervisors. This commitment, in turn, prompts more OCBs and higher job performance. Through a second process, high LMX supervisors enhance their subordinates' self-efficacy and means efficacy, thereby improving job performance. Results of a field study support our predictions. Theoretical and practical implications and directions for future research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)739-770
Number of pages32
JournalPersonnel Psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2011


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management

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