Contribution of integrity and vulnerability to perceived moral character and a leader’s behavioural profile attractiveness


Integrity is often regarded as cardinal to moral character and thus a desirable leadership attribute. However, integrity that is not moderated through an adjunctive virtue such as vulnerability can produce leaders who are self-righteous. Through a vignette experiment, the contribution of integrity and vulnerability towards the perception of moral character and the attractiveness of a leader’s behavioural profile was assessed. Results confirm that integrity contributes even more strongly to both perceived moral character and attractiveness of a leader’s behavioural profile when combined with vulnerability. The findings provide new insights into integrity and vulnerability as adjunctive virtues and building blocks of perceived moral character and ethical leadership attractiveness.