Perceived Leadership Traits of Employees Based on Physical Attributes and Social Desirability: an Indian Perspective
Shraddha Kulkarni

Dr. Shraddha Kulkarni, Professor, International Institute of Management Studies, Pune (Maharashtra) India.
Manuscript received on November 25, 2019. | Revised Manuscript received on December 15, 2019. | Manuscript published on December 30, 2019. | PP: 1837-1841 | Volume-9 Issue-2, December, 2019. | Retrieval Number: B2673129219/2019©BEIESP | DOI: 10.35940/ijeat.B2673.129219
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Abstract: The general perception about the importance of physical attributes and social desirability at the work place is very high. It has been considered as one of the major aspects for leadership traits. The purpose of this paper was to find the significance of physical appearance and social desirability in creating a positive impression at workplace. This study also tried to find out if these two attributes add to the perceived leadership capabilities of employees. In the present research, the author used a mix of qualitative & quantitative research methods. In the first stage, a structured interview has been conducted for 90 managers from multinational firms and they have been asked about their perception on team members’ physical appearance and social skills. In the second stage, a questionnaire survey has been conducted for 270 managers from banking sector. It has been observed that in both phases of research the respondents found the confidence, relevant work knowledge, communication skills and qualification more appealing as compare to dressing style and appearance and leadership traits are not directly related to the physical attributes and social desirability. However, the research also indicates that dressing style and grooming helps in creating positive impression and the acceptability of the leadership is easier in case of people with better physical & social aspects. This research will provide a useful insight to the practitioners and HR professionals to highlight the importance of communication skills, social skills, confidence for developing leadership traits amongst the employees. It will also help in communicating the importance of physical attributes such as dressing sense, body language, etiquettes etc.
Keywords: Physical attributes, social desirability, leadership traits