Leadership excellence in corporate communications: A multi-group test of measurement invariance

Abstract: This study aims at advancing leadership research in corporate communications by introducing a more rigorous statistical approach to test whether communication professionals of different hierarchical reporting levels, years of experience, and educational backgrounds would ascribe the same meanings to the construct of leadership excellence in corporate communications via survey research. By using an established measurement model of leadership excellence in corporate communications, the study uses three samples, including senior communication executives/leaders, mid-level communication professionals, and senior college students majoring in communication and/or public relations, to conduct the measurement invariance tests. By imposing constraints to different parameters in a sequence of nested models, findings indicate that the measures of leadership excellence in corporate communications can be equivalent across multiple groups. Measurement invariance was confirmed at multiple levels, including the higher-order measurement model, configural invariance, metric invariance, scalar invariance, and error invariance as explained in Cheung & Rensvold’s (2002) research. This study deepens our understanding of measurement invariance when applying multi-group comparison in testing leadership excellence. Such evidence can also be used as central principles when developing corresponding leadership training and development modules by organizations in supporting multicultural and multi-group sensitivity in leadership development.

Juan Meng 

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