A research paper by Dr. Steffen Raub of the Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne (co-authored with Christopher Robert, of the University of Missouri-Columbia) has been honored by the prestigious Academy of Management.
The paper investigates the concept of empowering leadership, its impact on "organizational citizenship behaviours" in front-line service employees, and the impact of cultural values. In practical terms, it suggests that service organizations can benefit from an empowerment approach, but must be careful to adapt their management practices to the specific cultural context in which they operate.
The paper by Drs Raub and Robert was selected from 565 submissions to the Academy's "Organizational behavior" division. It was awarded first prize in the category entitled "Outstanding practical implications for management". This award is sponsored by the international consultancy firm McKinsey & Company.
The paper demonstrates that empowering leadership may help front-line service employees to work in more flexible ways, and also suggests that this relationship is influenced by differences in employees' cultural values. This research was supported by Hilton Middle East & Asia Pacific. A sample of 640 employees and their supervisors was obtained from18 properties in 11 different countries across the Middle East and Asia Pacific region.
Valerie Hayden, VP Human Resources, Hilton Hotels Asia Pacific, is delighted by the results of this research: "The insights from Dr Raub’s paper prove to be a very positive endorsement for Hilton Hotels’ human resource management strategy. In addition to being a company that celebrates diversity with many front-line team members working together across nationalities and cultures, Hilton Hotels has always used an empowerment approach in our leadership programmes. The report suggests that our company culture will continue to benefit from efforts to embed empowerment beyond training and development. We intend to adapt our programmes to further fit with the local cultural contexts in which we operate to ensure more effectiveness."
Ruud J. Reuland, General Director of EHL, sees this award as a confirmation of the Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne's strategic focus on applied research: "Some major challenges in the hospitality industry cannot be addressed by quick, easy solutions, but need a more fundamental approach. Our research agenda is focused on these challenges".
The paper will be presented at the Academy of Management's Annual Meeting in Philadelphia in August 2007. Founded in 1936, The Academy of Management is the oldest and largest scholarly management association in the world, and is today the professional home of over 16,000 members, in 100 countries. The Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, is the largest annual gathering of management scholars in the world, attended by over 6,000 participants.
AboutEcole hôtelière de Lausanne (EHL) As the oldest hotel school in the world, the Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne (EHL) offers university-level studies to talented and ambitious students aiming for executive careers in the international hospitality industry. EHL permanently updates the scope of its academic programmes by integrating market trends and new technologies. Since its foundation in 1893, EHL has educated more than 25’000 hospitality industry executives, who today form an invaluable network for every member of the EHL community. Some 1’600 students from over 85 different countries are currently enjoying the unique and enriching environment of the Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne.