Top management leadership: Inside the black box

J. G. Hunt, Kimerly B. Boal, Ritch L. Sorenson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

69 Scopus citations


Based on leadership categorization theory from the cognitive sciences, a partial model of top management leadership is developed. The model looks inside the leadership black box and considers the personal and organizational consequences of matches and mismatches between three levels (superordinate, basic and subordinate) and two dimensions (substantive/content and symbolic/process) of leadership category prototypes and perceived leadership behaviors. The model also considers the impact of environmental, industry, organizational and personal background variables on the leadership category prototypes. The prototype/behavior match notion is explicated in considerable conceptual and empirical detail to encourage future research and the research implications of the model in general are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-65
Number of pages25
JournalThe Leadership Quarterly
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1990


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