Original Research

Transformational leadership as a moderator of the relationship between psychological safety and learning behaviour in work teams in Ghana

Stephen K. Kumako, Maxwell A. Asumeng
SA Journal of Industrial Psychology | Vol 39, No 1 | a1036 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajip.v39i1.1036 | © 2013 Stephen K. Kumako, Maxwell A. Asumeng | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 01 December 2011 | Published: 31 July 2013

About the author(s)

Stephen K. Kumako, Psychology Department, University of Ghana, Legon, Accra, Ghana
Maxwell A. Asumeng, Psychology Department, University of Ghana, Legon, Accra, Ghana


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Abstract

Orientation: Transformational team leadership is an important variable that influences team members’ perception of the team as psychologically safe enough to engage in learning behaviours.

Research purpose: The study was aimed at investigating the relationship between psychological safety and learning behaviour in teams, as well as the moderating role of transformational team leadership in this relationship.

Motivation for the study: For a team to be effective, adaptive and innovative and engage in learning behaviours, the transformational team leader must set the right climate in the team, where he or she welcomes the team members’ opinions, questions and feedback at no risk to their image. An understanding of this will be important in team leader selection and training.

Research design, approach and method: Using a cross-sectional survey design, 57 work teams comprising 456 respondents in teams of 7–9 members were purposively sampled from five financial institutions in Accra, Ghana. Hierarchical regression and moderation analyses were run on the data at the team level.

Main findings: Results indicated a positive relationship between team psychological safety and team learning behaviour, with transformational team leadership moderating this relationship.

Practical/managerial implication: Transformational team leadership is important in creating a climate of psychological safety that will enable team members to engage in learning behaviours.

Contribution/value-add: The study provided theoretical and empirical evidence that, in organisational contexts, transformational team leadership is an important variable that can facilitate psychological safety and learning behaviour in teams.


Keywords

Team work; Team learning behaviour; Team Climate; Psychological safety; Transformational Leadership; Ghana

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