Management Research Group (2000): Leadership Effectiveness Analysis: Executive Summary


Purpose of LEA


To provide comparisons between a leader/manager’s self perception and other employees/stakeholders perception of his/her leadership behaviour etc.

Supposed to provide critical feedback which can increase the manager’s effectiveness and leadership.


Feedback Scales


22 sets of leadership behaviour grouped into 6 functional areas:

  • Creating a vision
    Incl. conservative, innovative, technical, self, strategic.
  • Developing followership
    Incl. persuasive, outgoing, excitement, restraint.
  • Implementing the vision
    Incl. structuring, tactical, communication, delegation.
  • Following through
    Incl. control, feedback.
  • Achieving results
    Incl. management focus, dominant, production.
  • Team playing
    Incl. cooperation, consensual, authority, empathy.

Response Scales


A normative/ipsative, forced-choice format.

Each question consists of an introductory phase and three alternative answers which complete it. The respondent first chooses the item he/she finds most characteristic of him/her and rates it either 5 or 4. Next the respondent decides between the two remaining items which is most characteristic and rates it 3 or 2. The respondent is instructed to leave the last item blank.


Origins of Items: Theory/Research


The LEA was constructed by observing leaders and attempting to single out leadership behaviours and practices that tended to lead to success over a wide range of leadership challenges. LEA is based on the assumption that behaviour will differ depending on situation or challenge. The LEA therefore assesses leadership ”sets”, ie. the likelihood of the leader to behave in consistent ways across a broad range of challenges.


Length of instruments


LEA Self Diagnostic Questionnaire consists of 84 questions and 18 demographic questions (for research purposes). The LEA Observer Questionnaire consists of 66 items, 11 demographic questions and 22 additional questions relating to effectiveness of the person being rated.

Each of these forms can be completed in about 30 min.


Development of feedback scales


A group of experts (psychologists and senior organisation consultants) identified35 variables, which were reduced to 22 variables after agreement among assessors. Scales were selected based on their independence  (based on Pearson correlations from a sample of 1890 subjects). Items on the scales were selected based on their correlation to the total target scale and independence from other scales.





(2 separate studies, the first with 44 subjects, the second with 35 subjects, both with a 2-week inter-trial interval. Testing for consistency and stability in scores).

  • 1st study showed an average reliability coefficient of 0,77.
  • 2nd study showed an average reliabtility coefficient of 0,80.


(Extensive inter-rater reliability studies using the ratings of 1068 bosses, 2592 peers and 2544 direct reports. Intra-class correlation coefficients were used to assess inter-rater reliability.)

  • Boss ratings: coefficients ranged from 0,58 (2 raters) to 0,80 (4 raters).
  • Peer ratings: coefficients ranged from 0,67 (4 raters) to 0,80 (8 raters).
  • Direct report ratings: coefficients ranged from 0,66 (4 raters) to 0,79 (8 raters).

Internal consistency measures were not conducted, as they are not appropriate for the (semi-ipsative) format used in LEA.


Additional forms of the LEA Questionnaire


All forms measure the same 22 variables/leadership ”sets” and all are used to provide feedback. In addition to the LEA Self Diagnostic Questionnaire, the following forms have been developed:

  • LEA Observer Questionnaire (to be completed by an individual’s boss, peers and direct reports)
  • LEA Strategic Directions Questionnaire (questions focus on leadership behaviours an organization will need in the future)
  • LEA Role Expectations Questionnaire (can be used for defining leadership expectations for new or existing roles or identifying performance expectations held by an individual or his/her boss)
  • LEA Leadership Culture Questionnaire (can be used for assessing the current leadership culture, determining gaps between desired and current leadership culture etc.)




At least 5 studies have examinated construct and predictive validity of LEA:

  • Study A: N=24454 individuals completing LEA Self Diagnostic Questionnaire. Test responses were differentiated into 7 organisational levels and 9 job functions. Differences between groups were as expected, ex as one moves upward in management rank there is a greater demonstration of Management Focus, Persuasive, Delegation and Production and less demonstration of Cooperation, Structuring and Technical.
  • Study B: A multitrait multi-method (MTMM) matrix was used to assess construct validity of LEA Self Diagn. Quest. and the LEA Observer Quest. in a sample of 124158 individuals. Results supported the construct validity of the questionnaires.
  • Study C: Determining the relationships between the LEA Self Diagn. Quest. and other instruments (16PF, CPI, Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, Wesman Personnel Classification Test, Individual Directions Inventory). N=464 individuals who completed two or more tests. Expectations were small to moderate correlations between various LEA sets and personality indicators (as LEA does not define leadership sets as personality variables). It was also expected that correlations between LEA sets and cognitive variables would be very small. The findings of the study supported the expectations and hence the construct validity of LEA.

A Caution Statement on Misinterpretations



The LEA was not designed to be used as:

  • a measure of personality
  • a basis for termination
  • a direct measure of manager/leader performance

International Use



The LEA has been translated to Danish, Dutch, English (American and British), French, German, Spanish and Swedish. Norms for the Self Questionnaire incl.: North American, General European, Australia/New Zealand, Belgium, Denmark, France, Sweden, UK.


Feedback Delivery Systems Available



LEA instruments are used to provide feedback through a variety of feedback delivery systems grouped together as Strategic Leadership Development (SLD):

  • Strategic Directions: An aided session in which a senior level management team identifies the leadership behaviours critical to the overall organization.
  • Leadership 360®: A report which provides an individual with feedback on his/her leadership behaviour based on the perceptions of self, boss, peers and directs reports.
  • LEA Composite Profile: A report based on cumulative Leadership 360® assessments, providing composite information which can be used for training needs analysis and organizational development.

Feedback Delivery Strategies



  • Comparison to norms
  • Highlighting largest self/rater discrepancies
  • Highlighting high/low items and scales
  • Importance to job or success
  • Other, ex rater agreement – a reflection of the consistency of agreement among observers.

Support for Participant


Incl. development and planning guides concerning the LEA sets, their impact at the organizational level and what action steps the group of key leaders can take to reinforce, support and model the wanted leadership behaviours. Extensive interpretive and developmental information for the individual, exercises for leadership development and a guide for building action oriented development plans.

Post-assessment support incl. behavioural coaching modules designed to help individuals develop relevant leadership practices. Repeating the assessment process after 12-24 months in order to measure progress.


Support for Trainers


Different guides and programs are available, ex instructions on feedback workshops, administration and delivery of LEA-related feedback, training programs for human ressource professionals, supplemental norms, research reports etc.


Certification requirements


In order to purchase and deliver any form of LEA feedback, one must currently be an organizational consultant, HR professional, or clinical or organizational psychologist. One must also attend a 3-day facilitator training program provided by MRG.


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