Personal values at work: a mixed-methods study of executives’ strategic decision-making

Lichtenstein, Scott and Lichtenstien, G. and Higgs, M. (2017) Personal values at work: a mixed-methods study of executives’ strategic decision-making. Journal of General Management, 43 (1). pp. 15-23.

Personal values at work.pdf - Accepted Version

Download (779kB)


The purpose of this behavioural strategy study is to investigate how seasoned executives enact their personal values in real-life organisational decision-making. The significance of this paper is linking the personal values of executives with actual leadership decisions they made. In focus groups, strategic leaders with an Outer Directed (OD) or Inner Directed (ID) values orientation were prompted to reflected on their decisions at work. Analysis of the coded transcripts revealed the four independent raters reliably categorized coding events according to a Maslovian coding framework, r=0.81 for ID transcripts and r=0.76 for OD transcripts. Further statistical analysis found significant differences between executives’ values orientation (ID or OD) and values decisions (ID or OD) demonstrating a consistent pattern of ID and OD decision-making. Qualitative analyses revealed that ID participants’ decisions were based on innovation, intrinsic value and inter-dependency, while OD participants’ decisions were based on effectiveness, performance and affective independence. Implications for researchers include advancing the efficacy of a behavioural strategy approach, support for Maslow’s motivational theory and decision-making being consistent with personal values in an organisational context. Implications for practioners include a predictable values-based pattern to managers’ decisions and the need for a personal values-based leadership-strategy match.

Item Type: Article
Identification Number: 1177/0306307017719702
21 September 2017Published Online
1 October 2017Published
19 June 2017Accepted
Subjects: CAH17 - business and management > CAH17-01 - business and management > CAH17-01-04 - management studies
Divisions: Faculty of Business, Law and Social Sciences > Birmingham City Business School
Depositing User: Users 319 not found.
Date Deposited: 25 Apr 2018 07:57
Last Modified: 22 Mar 2023 11:49

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


In this section...