• political skill;
  • promotability;
  • multisource


Recognizing that organizations are inherently political arenas, investigating the relationship between political skill and various individual and organizational outcomes is increasing in the literature because employees need political skill in order to work effectively in such environments. Previous research, however, has not examined whether political skill is an indicator of promotability among different rater sources (i.e., bosses, direct reports, and peers). This study attempted to fill such gaps in previous research by examining whether the magnitude of the relationship between political skill and promotability differed depending upon which rater source was evaluating promotability. Using data from 262 practicing target-managers from around the world, the authors found that target-managers with more political skill had higher promotability ratings from three different coworker perspectives and the magnitude of the relationship was different for bosses and peers vis-à-vis direct reports. Furthermore, peer ratings of task-related leader behavior mediated the relationship between political skill and boss ratings of promotability. Contributions of this study are discussed, as are limitations, future research directions, and practical implications. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.