Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Lisa A. Steelman

Second Advisor

Lisa K. Perdigao

Third Advisor

Jessica Wildman

Fourth Advisor

Patrick D. Converse


The majority of what is currently known about mindfulness at work focuses on the individual benefits of being mindful (see Glomb, Duffy, Bono, & Yang, 2011; Good, et al., 2016), leaving an opportunity to understand the interpersonal impact of mindfulness at work. The current study tested whether mindful individuals, specifically mindful leaders, impact the work experience of their direct reports. Building on initial evidence (Leroy et al., 2015; Nubold, Quaquebeke, & Hulsheger, 2019) and strong theoretical ties (Kernis, 2002), supervisor mindfulness was a significant predictor of direct reports’ perception of authentic leadership behavior. Empathy was tested as a positive other-directed emotion that drives the perceptions of authentic behavior. Direct reports’ perceptions of supervisor empathy displayed a significant relationship, whereas supervisors self-rated empathy did not, suggesting it is the display of empathic concern that is important to direct reports’ ratings of authentic leader behavior rather than leaders’ selfperceptions of empathy. While positive interpersonal outcomes of mindful and authentic leaders have been theorized (Reb et al., 2015), impacts to coaching and the feedback environment had yet to be tested. The current study found evidence that mindful, authentic leaders promote a favorable feedback environment via the development of quality coaching relationships with their direct reports.