Effects of leadership style and anonymity on group potency and effectiveness in a group decision support system environment

John J. Sosik, Bruce J. Avolio, Surinder S. Kahai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

245 Scopus citations


A longitudinal laboratory experiment was conducted to evaluate the effects of leadership style (transactional vs. transformational) and anonymity level (identified vs. anonymous) on group potency and effectiveness of 36 undergraduate student work groups performing a creativity task using a Group Decision Support System (GDSS). GDSS are interactive networks of computers for generating solutions to unstructured problems. Results indicated that GDSS anonymity amplified the positive effect of transformational leadership on group potency relative to transactional leadership in the group writing session of the task. GDSS anonymity also increased the effect of transformational leadership relative to transactional leadership on group effectiveness. Implications for practice and future research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)89-101
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Applied Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 1997


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Applied Psychology

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