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Professor Hannes Leroy

Professor Hannes Leroy

Distinguished Research Professor


Streatham Court, University of Exeter, Rennes Drive, Exeter, EX4 4PU, UK

Hannes completed his PhD in authentic leadership development at the University of Leuven in 2012. After that he worked at Cornell University (Johnson School of Business) before continuing his academic journey at Rotterdam School of Management, currently as an Associate Professor.

Hannes Leroy is interested in authentic leadership and how to develop it. That interest includes not only a passionate and critical view of the concept of authenticity but his past work also includes a better understanding of its unique outcomes (e.g., safety, error hiding and work engagement), antecedents (e.g., mindfulness training), and similarities and differences from related concepts (i.e., leader behavioral integrity, leader communication transparency). On the development side he is passionate about authenticity both in terms of developing leaders to use their unique or authentic self as a source of their leadership strength as well as the idea of real (i.e., actually moving the needle) leadership development.

Nationality: Belgian


  • PhD

Research interests

  • Authenticity.
  • Leadership
  • Leadership development

I am interested in authenticity – the extent to which one remains true to oneself – at work: whether individuals feel authentic, are perceived as authentic, and encouraged to be authentic. I study the emergence of authenticity across multiple levels of analysis; for example, I have investigated the individual (e.g. mindfulness), leader (e.g. authentic leadership), team (e.g. psychological safety), and organizational (e.g. climate for inclusion) antecedents of authenticity. In turn, authenticity is associated with important outcomes throughout the employment process. My research has shown that authenticity helps us understand how organizations maintain a credible image as an employer and company, how job candidates manage to portray a credible impression, whether employees internalize organizational values and become fully engaged in their jobs, whether and how employees voice and implement innovative ideas, under what conditions employees are willing to report and learn from work (safety) errors, and finally how authenticity in leadership at different levels helps fosters engagement, trust, and inclusion. 

Additionally, I am interested in what constitutes and drives effective leadership development. Aligned with the previous topic, I am interested in leadership development.

Research projects

Most of my research to date focuses on the challenges involved with effective leadership development. In a variety of projects I am engaged in :

  • A longitudinal endeavour to measure the effects of leadership development
  • Looking at ways to standardize/accredit effective leadership development
  • Effect evaluation of experiential leadership development practices.

Former and Existing PhD Students

  • Marlies Veestraeten, University of Leuven, Assistant Professor at NEOMA Business School.
    • Strengths-based leadership
  • Johannes Claeys, Tilburg University, Assistant Professor at IESEG Business School
    • Leadership vulnerability
  • Jana Deprez, University of Leuven, post-doc researcher at University of Leuven
    • Corporated intrapreneurship
  • Kathleen Vangronsvelt, University of Leuven
    • Dark sides of auhtenticity
  • Pisitta Vongswasdi, Erasmus University
    • Effectiveness of Experiential Leadership Development
  • Jingtao Zhu, Erasmus University
    • Leading with Purpose

Key publications | Publications by category | Publications by year

Publications by category

Journal articles

Cullen-Lester KL, Leroy H, Gerbasi A, Nishii L (2016). Energy's role in the extraversion (dis)advantage: How energy ties and task conflict help clarify the relationship between extraversion and proactive performance. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 37(7), 1003-1022. Full text. DOI.

Publications by year


Cullen-Lester KL, Leroy H, Gerbasi A, Nishii L (2016). Energy's role in the extraversion (dis)advantage: How energy ties and task conflict help clarify the relationship between extraversion and proactive performance. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 37(7), 1003-1022. Full text. DOI.

Awards and Honours

  • 2018: Best Paper Award AOM Conference -Leadership Development Beyond Developing Leaders,
  • 2018: Best Paper Award ACERE Conference - The Temporal Evolution in Entrepreneurial Intention
  • 2016: Journal of Management Studies Karen Legge Award for Contribution by an Early Career
  • 2013: Best Dissertation Award, Dutch HRM Network, Belgium
  • 2009: Outstanding Reviewer Award, AOM conference, Chicago
  • 2008: Doctoral Fellowship in Intercollegiate Center for Management Science, Belgium (FWO)
  • 2007: Best Paper Award ICSB Conference, Turku, Finland

External positions

  • Associate Editor GOM
  • Editorial Board Member
    • Journal of Applied Psychology
    • Personnel Psychology
    • Journal of Management Studies
    • Journal of Leadership and Organization Studies

I teach leadership development programs across levels – MBA-EMBA-Executive Education. My focus there is typically authentic leadership development, where I work with students to discover and cultivate their unique leadership style.

Additionally, I teach various formats on power and politics in organizations, with a special emphasis on how to maintain one’s authenticity within company politics.

Finally, I have taught courses on “leadership by design” where I help executives in their leadership by designing an HR-system that supports their leadership vision.