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The role of Environmental Transformational Leadership on Environmental performance

With the increasing importance on corporate environmental and sustainable development issues, green human resource management appeared as the need of time. Related research illustrates that initiatives can decrease their undesirable influence on the environment by applying effective green human resource management actions, thus enlightening their essential competitiveness. Based on literature analysis, this paper deal with the procedure, connotation and associated theoretical foundation of green human resource management. And the product variables, and how to instrument green human resource management events, and in conclusion looking forward to future study guidelines, to offer reference for following research. However, the current research on the influencing factors of green human resource management is still in its infancy, and the content of the investigation is diverse and fragmented.


In recent years, air pollution has caused many places to be “crouched” (Wu, 2012), and people's living environment is worrying. Environmental governance has become a "national war." This paper considers environmental management and green management to be consistent. After the concept of sustainable development was put forward, scholars put forward the concept of “environmental management” (McCloskey and Maddock, 1994), and considered that environmental management refers to responding to the environment through planning and improvement of corporate structure, corporate management system and corporate activities. Variety. Given the use of environmental management systems within organizations to bring tangible or intangible benefits to organizations, such as reducing economic spending on environmental pollution fines (Hunt and Auster, 1990), more and more companies are introducing environmental management systems into the enterprise. management. However, the adoption of environmental management systems requires the coordination of corporate management functions, especially the coordination of human resources management functions.

As early as 1996, Wehrmeyer emphasized in his book Greening People: Human Resources and Environment Management that environmental management should be linked to human resource management. Zutshi and Sohal (2004) also emphasized that human resource management is effective. The need to adopt an environmental management system. With the deepening of research in this field, scholars have observed and studied the sustainable development issues involved in human resource management from the perspective of utilitarian and non-utilitarian (Boudreau and Ramstad, 2005; Renwick et al., 2008), and will be sustainable. Cross-cutting environmental management and human resource management and defining sustainable human resource management as “human resource management that meets the current needs of enterprises and society without compromising their future needs”, thus forming a brand-new Research area (Jackson et al., 2011), “Green Human Resource Management”, to promote sustainable corporate development (Mariappanadar, 2003; Marcus, 2013).

Green HR Management encourages all employees to participate in practices that promote sustainable corporate development, such as electronic archives, carpooling, shifts, conference calls and virtual meetings, telephone exchanges, online training, and energy efficiency offices (Gill, 2012; Dutta et al., 2012) ;Gayathri and Karthikeyan, 2013), etc., to enhance employees' awareness and commitment to organizational sustainability issues, thereby enabling environmentally friendly human resource management initiatives to generate greater efficiency, lower costs, and increased employee engagement. And loyalty to facilitate the realization of corporate environmental management strategic goals.

Through the study and collation of related literatures at home and abroad, we find that domestic and foreign scholars have certain differences in the definition of green human resource management concepts. The definition of the concept by domestic scholars is not limited to the environmental management of the organization. They also link green human resource management with the working and living conditions of employees and the sustainable development of individuals (i.e. “humanity” and “mindset”). Jin Xiu and Li Wei, 2006; Li Jian, 2009). However, when discussing the concept, foreign scholars mainly apply the “green” concept to the field of human resource management, combining enterprise environmental management with human resource management (Gill, 2012), that is, incorporating environmental awareness into corporate management, with human resources. Management measures to promote the achievement of organizational environmental strategic objectives. This paper believes that if the “humanity” and “mindset” of employees are incorporated into the green human resource management, the concept of “harmony” is reflected, which is highly correlated with the embodiment of corporate social responsibility in terms of employees.

Therefore, in the synthesis of domestic and foreign literature, this paper only focuses on the combination of corporate environmental management and green human resource management, that is, the enterprise conducts green human resource management to keep up with the corporate strategy and create human resources with green competitive advantages (Yang Guang, 2003). To promote the realization of corporate environmental management, to achieve the goal of sustainable development (Wagner, 2013), to create green value for the enterprise. In other words, green human resource management is a management practice in which companies identify and respond to emerging social trends and meet government and regulatory expectations.

Transformational leadership

Transformational leadership is often attributed to positive group results. Transformational leaders are described as inspiring, energetic, and full of enthusiasm. They try to share their vision of the group’s goals with its members and help their followers succeed. According to the results of one study, the transformational leadership style can also have a positive impact on the well-being of employees in a company whose leader sticks to this style. In a study published in the journal Labor Safety and Environmental Medicine, they interviewed employees of several information companies. The researchers asked participants to answer questions about their employer's leadership style.

The transformational leader has been chosen because this type is seen as the ideal leader within the current environment. The transformational leader is the last decades designated as the 'New leadership', leaders must be able to inspire, and one have clear vision. The transformational leader has theoretically a good fit with proactive behavior, this fit is also apparent from empirical research in practice (R. Pillai et al. 2003, Bateman & Crant, 1994). What is not yet investigated, is the role of many moderators within this relationship. The moderators that are considered in this study fall under the contextual factors indicated by Crant (2000). Contextual factors are factors that are not to deal with the characteristics and personality of the individual, but with the environment or the environment in which the employee is located. They are factors on which the leader can exercise influence. After all, the leader can have a determined environment to create. These contextual factors can be good or bad conditions affect the willingness to proactively behave. The variables that examined his job becomes autonomy, job responsibility and resource sharing. These are three variables that are often mentioned within empowerment theories (Nielsen, 1986). Which are aimed at motivating the employee by, among other things, it is giving extra responsibility.

This research is important because it provides insights into the importance of the leader and to what extent job autonomy, responsibility and resource sharing play a role in eliciting proactive behavior at the employee. The tradeoff between it creating the right conditions (using the moderators) or choosing a person with the right characteristics may be more efficient for the manager taken when the choice between these two is desired, due to this research.    

Further, the theoretical basis of green human resource management: the concept of natural resources. The resource-based view (RBV) derived from the perspectives of organizational economics and strategic management focuses on the analysis of the industry and environment in which the organization is located. It links the organizational strategy with the resources within the organization. Having a resource (such as human resources) to discuss its position in the competition. As Barney (1991), the main advocate of the resource school, emphasizes, organizational resources can be a source of competitive advantage. The resource school view believes that the resources (including material resources, human resources, and organizational capital) owned by different organizations are different, that is, heterogeneous; in addition, because of the difficulty in resource transfer between competing enterprises, The resources owned by different companies are immovable 1 , so it is possible for a company to implement a strategy that is different from other companies and uses its unique resources for value creation to build its own competitive advantage.

This is also different from the traditional strategic view that resources are transferable, and companies can purchase or create their own resources. The shortcoming of this theory is that it ignores the fact that in recent years, with the rapid development of the economy, the natural environment is deteriorating; more and more enterprises are willing to sacrifice their own economic benefits at the expense of the ecological environment. It also makes the state, corporate management and consumers increasingly concerned about the protection of the natural environment. To make up for this deficiency, the concept of the “nature resource-based view of the firm” came into being (Hart, 1995). This is a new theory of competitive advantage in firms, which argues that a company's sustainable competitive advantage is based on its ability to achieve environmental friendliness in its operations (Hart, 1995).

According to Hart (1995), to achieve sustainable development, companies must introduce natural environmental elements into a green management research framework based on resource-based perspectives. Hart's natural resource foundation view emphasizes that enterprises must pay attention to the three strategic capabilities of environmental pollution prevention, product monitoring and sustainable development, rationally allocate and utilize natural resources, and improve environmental or green management performance to achieve sustainable development goals. Among them, pollution prevention focuses on minimizing waste of resources and reducing transaction costs; product monitoring aims to reduce the total cost of products throughout the life cycle; the strategic goal of sustainable development is to reduce the burden of environmental problems on the development of enterprises. to help companies build the future competitive position (Hart, 1995; Shen Hao et al., 2010) . These three strategic capabilities can improve the competitive advantage of the enterprise and establish the legal status of the enterprise. Environmentally-oriented green human resource management measures are an important resource for realizing these three strategic capabilities.

Companies implementing green human resource management adopt environmental management strategies to manage employees in these areas (Renwick et al. 2008), which helps companies successfully implement environmental management. In contrast to Hart (1995), first of all, companies adopting green human resource management measures differ from those that adopt ordinary human resource management measures in terms of labor demand, as shown in the following aspects: Whether employees have environmental awareness, whether they can pay attention to environmental protection in the production process, and whether they recognize the sustainable development strategy of the company. Secondly, based on the normal distribution of human resource capabilities, there are always a small number of employees with high quality and emphasis on sustainable development. Therefore, it is especially important for companies to use the employee selection system to attract and select the best employees that are suitable for them. Finally, due to the limited number of employees with excellent quality and environmental management, the competitive advantage of enterprises built by high-quality employees is difficult to obtain. Therefore, such employees are irreplaceable in creating competitive advantages for enterprises. Daily and Huang (2001) also raised the issue of human resource management, arguing that top management support, environmental training, employee authorization, teamwork and reward and punishment systems are necessary conditions for effective implementation of environmental management.


In addition, by implementing green human resource management measures, organizations can also expand their resources and capabilities to create sustainable competitive advantage to organizational culture, organizational reputation and image, knowledge and skills, and learning capabilities (Nelson and Winter, 1982; Barney, 1986), as long as they are unique to the organization and are not easily transferred between different organizations (rooted in specific organizational structures, processes, and interpersonal relationships) or replaced, they can become a sustainable competitive advantage for organizations. Source. Since the design of the enterprise green human resource management system will directly affect the organization's environmental protection capability and competitive advantage, the adoption of green human resource management measures that can improve organizational capabilities can promote the formation of sustainable competitive advantage (Lado and Wilson). , 1994; Huselid, 1995). Therefore, based on the natural resource foundation view, we believe that green human resource management measures can be used as an important resource for enterprises to improve their competitive advantage and competitiveness.


Influencing factors and effect results of green human resource management

From the existing literature, scholars' research on green human resource management focuses on human resource management measures themselves (Gill, 2012; Renwick et al., 2013; Mishra et al., 2014), antecedent variables for green human resource management and The resulting variables are also involved, but less. In this paper, we analyze the antecedents and outcome variables involved in the existing research to explore the influencing factors and effects of green human resource management.

Influencing factors of green human resource management

Regarding the influencing factors of green human resource management, that is, which factors can promote the occurrence of green human resource management, only a few documents have been discussed. Through the study of the existing literature, we summarize the relevant factors from the macro and micro levels. Influential factors at the macro level. The macro-level research focuses on the external environment that companies face. First, globalization and environmental protection trends have prompted companies to adopt management methods that meet the needs of economic development to gain an advantage in the competitive tide (Storey, 1995). With the intensification of global warming and the requirements of green sustainable development, enterprises have gradually begun to pay attention to environmental management. According to the resource-based theory, human resources, as a competitive advantage resource that cannot be imitated by enterprises, will inevitably become a key factor for enterprises to achieve environmental performance.

Second, the development of corporate green human resource management is inseparable from the role of the government. The "five in one" pattern of China puts forward the inevitable requirements for enterprises to carry out environmental management and forms a realistic pressure. The government can only create conditions for the innovation and transformation of enterprises and create a good atmosphere for the development of green economy and green technology industry. To promote the development of green human resource management.

Furthermore, stakeholder theory emphasizes that the difference in firm performance stems from the differences in corporate strategies that companies have to meet the needs of different stakeholders (Harrison and Freeman, 1999). In other words, if certain actions of the company cause objections from stakeholders, the company will have to make adjustments to compensate for the negative impact of these actions on the company. Faced with the eco-friendly production requirements of customers, partners, the media and the public, human resource management must become a key factor in corporate reform and innovation (Jackson et al., 2010).

Influencing factors at the micro level.

At the micro level, Fernandez et al. (2003) believe that the cultural atmosphere of the organization is closely related to environmental management. The environmentally friendly organizational culture can attract more capable employees and contribute to environmental management. The organization's environmental culture reflects the organization's environmental vision (Harris and Crane, 2002). Organizations with environmental management mechanisms supported by environmental culture often attract more motivated and capable employees (Dechant and Altman, 1994). In addition, this kind of environmental protection tends to encourage employees to actively participate in environmental related issues and make their own suggestions, and extensive employee participation can further consolidate the environmental support atmosphere, because employees will gradually form an environmental protection after feeling the environmental support atmosphere. Concepts, in the process of working and communicating with colleagues, will also pay more attention to the dissemination and sharing of environmental knowledge.

The organization's environmental management strategy orientation and goals can also promote green human resource management practices (Jackson et al., 2010). Only by matching a range of policies and practices with organizational environmental strategies can human resource management activities become a key driver of a company's environmental sustainability goals (Gill, 2012). Egri and Hornal (2002) found that the green leadership style of HR managers and leaders can also influence the implementation of corporate environmental protection measures and is strongly related to corporate social responsibility activities. At the same time, corporate characteristics have also been shown to be related to corporate human resource management practices (Linnenluecke and Griffiths, 2010).

In summary, the macro-level globalization, government, stakeholders and micro-level organizational culture atmosphere, leadership style, and strategic orientation will affect the development of green human resource management. In addition, there are certain interactions between the influencing factors at each level. For example, to reduce the severity of environmental pollution, the state will comply with global trends and adopt corresponding prevention or encouragement policies to improve the country's environmental conditions. At the enterprise level, companies will continue to adjust their strategic orientation based on the needs of stakeholders. At the same time, government support and stakeholder demand will also play a regulatory role at the micro level in the face of green human resource management (Harrison and Freeman, 1999).

In order to form a systematic and complete understanding of green human resource management and provide effective guidance for the relevant human resource management practices of enterprises, future research should pay attention to the discussion of the influencing factors of green human resource management, and conduct in-depth and meticulous empirical investigation. .

 Results of the role of green human resource management

From the existing literature, the discussion on the results of green human resource management is mainly focused on the organizational and individual levels. The impact of green human resource management on organizational tangible and intangible assets. Green human resource management can realize the sustainable use of organizational resources through human resource management practices, thereby promoting the organization's sustainable development. There is ample evidence that green-oriented human resource management measures (Renwick et al., 2012) are critical to a company's environmental performance. The company's environmental performance refers to the “effectiveness of the company in surviving social expectations in the protection of the natural environment” (Chan, 2005), which involves whether the company is concerned about environmental issues in a positive position and can surpass current environmental regulations.

The regulations go to engage in environmental protection activities. In the practice of human resource management, companies can encourage employees to make outstanding contributions to environmental management through non-monetary rewards such as paid vacations and gift certificates (Govindarajulu and Daily, 2004) and Green Income Cards (Simms, 2007). To achieve corporate environmental performance. Relevant research also pointed out that companies adopting more environmentally-oriented human resource management measures can improve their environmental performance (Jabbour et al., 2008). Ones and Dilchert (2012) pointed out that the production of environmentally friendly products can enhance the environmental protection of enterprises by rebuilding the human resource management system to encourage the management and all employees to use efficient sewage technology and production technology, reduce energy waste and improve energy efficiency. Performance. At the same time, through the role of green human resource management in the environmental management system, the organization's environmental performance may also lead to better financial performance, so that enterprises can obtain more economic benefits, and further pave the way for the improvement of environmental performance.

Finally, through the above two aspects, it can be known that the enterprise pays attention to the management of green human resources, which not only helps to balance the work of the employees - family life, but also can improve the employee's job satisfaction and enhance the employee's dependence and attribution to the enterprise. sense. According to the existing literature, employees have a strong sense of belonging and dependence on the organization, and it is easier to show some hidden, undetectable behaviors that have a positive effect on the environmental management of the enterprise, namely environmentally friendly organizational citizenship behavior (Paillé et al., 2014), the emergence of this behavior can further help companies improve environmental performance and achieve sustainable development.

In the recruitment interview process, interview questions can involve the green development of the company to unearth candidates with potential in this area (Gill, 2012). Recruitment positions should reflect a clear sense of sustainability so that employees are willing to engage in environmental management, actively expand knowledge of environmental management, and attract employees with environmental knowledge, especially those that directly affect environmental performance.

Previous studies on environmental compensation and senior management pointed out that companies with good environmental performance pay more to CEOs (Berrone and Gomez,Mejia, 2009), and pay for executives' environmental performance, which is more fixed than their payments. Wages are occasionally more effective in rewarding their environmental behavior (Fernandez et al., 2003). Corporate compensation includes monetary compensation and non-monetary compensation. Enterprises provide non-monetary compensation to reward employees who contribute to the realization of environmental goals, including providing paid vacation, parking priority, gift certificates, etc. Employee motivation (Govindarajulu and Daily, 2004). For frontline employees, non-economic rewards are more effective. Many companies in the United States often use “recognition rewards” when they motivate employees in environmental management. For example, they are commended in the enterprise, and each year, individuals, teams, and departments that reduce waste are commended, and relevant employees participate in environmental gatherings and activities. Opportunities, etc. (Govindarajulu and Daily, 2004). When employees make comments or suggestions about the company's environmental management, the company can also give employees appropriate rewards, and employees who have acquired green skills through skill salary rewards (Renwick et al., 2012).

The integration model and future research prospects

Integration model

Looking at the existing research on green human resource management, the greening of the human resources management function module is affected by many factors and produces corresponding performance. Schuler and Jackson (2005) systematically presented the theoretical model of strategic human resource management from the perspective of external environment, organization, human resource management practices and stakeholders, and systematically expounded the mechanism of action related to strategic human resource management. On this basis, Dubois et al. (2012) applied strategic human resource management to the organization's environmental management system, emphasizing that human resource management in the environmental management system is influenced by the external environment and depends on internal factors of the organization, such as leadership style., atmosphere, etc.

This paper further collates the relevant documents of the green human resource management mechanism and constructs a corresponding theoretical model for the results of the green human resource management practice activities. The model not only emphasizes the importance of the external environment to the organization from a strategic perspective, but also emphasizes the role of green human resource management from the perspective of the internal operation of the organization.


Under the influence of external pressure, we analyze the process of internal operation of the organization from three aspects, namely organizational factors, practical activities and corresponding effects. The former two interact with the latter to different degrees. Organizational factors, such as strategic positioning, leadership style, cultural atmosphere, etc., can promote the development of green human resource management practices and the achievement of good effects. At the same time, green human resource management practices will also promote the formation of a green atmosphere and ideas. Finally, the formation of good results, such as the improvement of external evaluations, will give organizations the incentive to improve their environmental image, and then more proactively promote green ideas and carry out corresponding practical activities. At present, our research is still in the stage of theoretical analysis. In the future research, we will also conduct an empirical test on the model.


(II) Prospects for future research

Through the combing of the literature on green human resource management, we find that the current research in this field is still in its infancy, and there is still much room to explore in this field. Previous research has focused on the emergence and connotation of green human resource management and how to implement green human resource management measures. From the perspective of the number of documents and research, the above research on green human resource management still needs to be enriched and expanded. Therefore, we believe that at least the following theoretical and empirical studies can be carried out systematically and in depth from the following aspects:

An antecedent variable of green human resource management.

(1) From the existing literature, the discussion on the pre-cause of green human resource management is relatively insufficient, and the research content is relatively simple. Future research on the frontier of green human resource management can at least focus on the following aspects: (1) Previous studies have shown that an organizational culture with an environmentally friendly concept is conducive to the occurrence of green human resource management (Gill, 2012). Organizational culture can promote and promote green human resource management. (2) Previous studies have influenced the influence of leadership style and leadership personal characteristics on green human resource management (Flannery and May 1994; Lerner, 1998; Egri and Herman, 2000), but did not explore what leadership style and leadership individuals What aspects of the feature will affect green human resource management. For example, are positive leadership behaviors such as transformational leadership and empowerment leadership, and negative leadership behaviors such as abusive leadership in the field of human resources management have a certain impact on green human resource management? Related issues need to be further explored. (3) Existing research indicates that organizational learning can promote green human resource management, and future research can further explore how the organizational learning process affects the occurrence of green human resource management.

2. The theoretical basis of green human resource management. The previous research mainly starts from the natural resource basic view, and the theoretical basis is relatively simple. Stakeholder theory points out that the difference in firm performance stems from the differences in corporate strategies that companies have to meet the needs of different stakeholders (Harrison and Freeman, 1999). In the course of business, if certain actions of the company cause strong opposition from stakeholders, the company will have to make adjustments to compensate for the negative impact of these actions on the company. Mitchell et al. (1997) pointed out that stakeholder power, legitimacy, and urgency affect the attitude of corporate executives to stakeholder appeals, and follow-up research can focus on corporate environmental stakeholders. Explore.

3. Research on the results and mechanism of action of green human resource management. Current research on the results of green human resource management focuses more on organizational performance at the organizational level, while less attention is paid to outcome variables at the individual and team levels (Chun, 2009). In addition, future research can also explore green human resource management itself as a situational factor. (Yang Guang, 2003).

4. On the one hand, the traditional culture has a deeper impact. Therefore, it is very necessary to introduce variables that reflect the characteristics of local cultural psychology in the research of green human resource management. On the other hand, China is the world's largest emerging market economy country, and the economy is dynamic.). (Riordan et al., 1997; Maignon et al., 1999; Bansal and Roth, 2000; Demirer et al., 2003). The development speed is fast, but the relevant systems are not perfect, the degree of marketization needs to be improved, and the business environment presents a high degree of dynamic and complex characteristics, which brings challenges to enterprises.

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