A meso measure? Examination of the levels of analysis of the Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ)

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Critical review of the Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire, Form 5X (MLQ5X), reveals serious problems related to specification of the theoretical level of analysis at which it measures its underlying constructs. Data from two separate samples indicate that items of the commonly used MLQ5X are ambiguous with respect to level of analysis. It appears unclear in many instances whether the items reflect individual, group, or organizational referents. Based upon our analyses and the literature, we present specific propositions concerning the level(s) at which each MLQ5X dimension appears most appropriately conceptualized and measured, along with suggestions for future research and revision of the MLQ5X.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)604-616
Number of pages13
JournalLeadership Quarterly
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2009



  • Leadership
  • Levels of analysis
  • Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Applied Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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