10-1108_IJOA-07-2021-2878.pdf (563.98 kB)

The antecedents of leader-member-exchange (LMX) relationships in African context: The influence of the supervisor’s feedback delivery-tactic

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journal contribution
posted on 2022-11-17, 19:12 authored by Obinna Alo, Arslan AhmadArslan Ahmad



The current paper aims to analyse the  antecedents of leader–member exchange relationships (LMX) by  specifically focusing on the influence of the supervisor’s feedback  delivery tactic.


This study uses qualitative research methods  with primary interviews as the main data source. Primary interviews with  40 managers from top supermarkets in Nigeria, South Africa and the UK  were undertaken.


The authors found that both high-quality  positive feedback and constructive criticisms produced the same feelings  – more positive interpersonal relationships with their supervisors,  higher levels of commitment to their organisations, higher job  satisfaction and thus, high-quality LMX relationships. Where criticisms  were delivered without greater interpersonal treatment, feedback was  perceived as negative, and participants revealed lack of job  satisfaction, lack of commitment to their organisations, poor  interpersonal relationship with their supervisors, high turnover intent  and thus low-quality LMX relationship.


To the best of the authors’ knowledge, the  current paper is one of the first studies to highlight the consequences  of different feedback delivery tactics on subsequent LMX quality  particularly in African context. The authors specifically develop a  process-based model of enhancing high-quality LMX, which shows the role  of the supervisor’s feedback delivery tactic in the process. The authors  also develop a process-based model that illustrates how negative/unconstructive feedback could result in a low-quality LMX.  

Finally, to the best of the authors’ knowledge, this paper is also one  of the first to offer a comparative assessment between African and  British (the UK) empirical settings and highlight some interesting  dynamics concerning LMX quality and role of supervisor’s feedback  delivery tactic.