Antecedents of Dark Leadership: Empirical Evidence from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Police Department

Sourath Mahar, Syed Mohsin Ali Shah & Qadar Bakhsh Baloch


This research aimed at investigating determinants of Dark Leadership Behavior phenomenon demonstrated during the leaders and followers relations. The research evolved around establishing relationship between narcissism, Machiavellianism, hubris, abusive style of supervision and unpredictability, with dark leadership behavior amongst the leader-and followers’ interaction in Police department of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Survey was used for collection of data about the predictors and dependent variable through a self administered adopted instrument with 54 items, from the serving police officials (n-600) with 73% return rate. Reliability and validity checks were done Cronbatch Alpha, face/ construct validity followed by a pilot study. Exploratory Factor Analysis (EFA) operationalized the indicators of all constructs using SPSS 25.0. Principal Component Analysis (PCA) along with Varimax rotation were used to extract all latent constructs. The results show that all the determinants of dark leadership have higher than recommended value of 0.7 however, narcissism, hubris and abusive supervision, amongst the six determinants, are the most significant predictors followed by authoritarian style and unpredictability of the leader.  Item-to-total correlation has found satisfactory results. PLS SEM was employed for analyses and all of the proposed hypotheses were found accepted.

Keywords: Dark leadership, abusive supervision; narcissism, Machiavellianism, authoritarian unpredictability.

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