The leader “Reality and Reason” construct, defined by the constructs of Authenticity (A), Commitment to Cooperation and Progress (development) (CCP), and Morality and Strength (MS), is the only construct in the model that has a direct impact on temporary absence from work. The constructs of Employee Personality Respect (EPR), Internal Honesty (IH), and Employee Achievement Recognition (EAR) indirectly affect employee absence through the perception of the leader as real and reasonable. The negative statistically significant influence of the perceived “reality and reasonableness” suggests that the higher the perception of “reality and reasonableness” is, the less the employees will be temporarily absent from work and vice versa.

Leader behavior in the model (questionnaire) is operationalized with six constructs (the first three constructs form the “reality and reason” construct dimension):

Authenticity (A)

An authentic leader is one who is truthful and recognized by his or her originality, through which the employees can feel and perceive his or her authenticity, sincerity, originality, internal consistency (in harmony with him or herself), the leader’s “true essence”. This leader is completely present, clean and radiant, he or she emits something clear and is in complete harmony with his or her true self. This type of leader does not hide from others, he or she acknowledges the fact that nobody can hide what they truly are, nobody can hide the real truth who he or she is as a human being. The leader’s authenticity derives from inside, from the leader’s strength, uniqueness, clarity, internal harmony, knowledge of self, self-belief, and credibility. Thus, the connection between human elements and natural “true self” elements, which do not change the leader but show who he or she truly is. The leader’s authentic behavior forms through this connection of elements, which makes the leader more trustworthy and pristine. Through this authentic leader behavior, the leader can reflect his or her true identity. It is thus vital for the leader to be aware of his or her own views, values, beliefs, emotions, needs, and similar. An authentic leader is also credible because his or her behavior (actions) matches what he or she says. In our case, authenticity is also shown through the leader’s attitude towards cooperation, understanding, responsibility, compassion, sincerity, fair employee treatment, and his or her empathy towards employees. An authentic leader is one that is emotionally stable and is able to recognize employee needs, and offers them emotional support.

Commitment to Cooperation and Progress (development) (CCP)

CCP defines the activities with which the leader stimulates and influences the employees to cooperate more, and to improve the organization as well as themselves. The main question here is whether (and how) the leader is able to address the employees and make them cooperate and work for a common good, for the prosperity of all the employees and the organization as a whole. A leader committed to cooperation and progress is dedicated and true to his or her vision of the progression of the organization/work group, and strives to enthuse others with this vision. This type of leader promotes employee activity and cooperation in order to achieve a common good. The leader addresses the employees with his or her actions and personality, in which the employees recognize an example which they can follow. This type of leader wishes to be amid the employees (in the center) because they want to feel the developments, relations and everything else that helps shape the working environment, and because they seek new opportunities to progress, and strive to serve as well as improve themselves and their employees.

Morality and Strength (MS)

MS defines the characteristics of the leader’s values and actions. The leader’s recognition of his or her own values, personal integrity, capability of moral judgment, deciding on what is wrong and what is right, as well as credibility, is at the forefront of this construct. MS reflects in the leader’s ability to connect the things he or she says with his or her actions. A moral and strong leader is internally harmonious and strong in his or her “core” beliefs, which cannot be easily put off by external factors. This leader is not internally torn. The leader’s strength is also measured in the way how he or she reacts when assuming responsibility. The leader’s strength is also reflected through the safety, which the employees feel when in the leader’s presence. The employees perceive how internally consistent and “true” the leader is, as well as if they can rely on him or her. The leader becomes strong only at the time when he or she accepts his or her true self (weaknesses, vulnerabilities, strengths, and similar). The leader’s sincerity is reflected through the truthful recognition of his or her own mistakes and sincere conduct, in accordance with his or her true self and needs.

Employee Personality Respect (EPR)

EPR represents the characteristics of a leader who respects the personality of their own employees and the impact on the employee’s mental state. These are behavioral elements, which the employees recognize very quickly because the leader, with his or her actions/words, tampers with the employee’s internal feelings. With these actions and behavior, the leader addresses the employees’ “natural needs” and longings, such as importance, recognition, respect and value, as well as acceptance, tolerance and dignity. With this type of behavior, the leader gives the employees a feeling of safety and security, that they are accepted as who they, and that they have the leader’s support. The employees feel respected, if they can feel the leader’s support (safety). This type of leader also does not humiliate nor disrespect the employees.

Internal Honesty (IH)

The construct of internal honesty and openness defines the leader’s way of expressing his or her views, needs and feelings before employees. This construct defines to what extent the leader expresses his or her true beliefs, views and feelings when in dialogue with employees or whether he or she does not express them, or even tries to avoid expressing them. Internal honesty is based on the fact that the individual is honest to him or herself as well as to others, and that he or she is liberated within. This is why the leader is able to say (express) to others what he or she truly feels and thinks – the leader says, in a liberated manner, what he or she feels. If you express your own views and thoughts to someone else, then this person will know where he or she stands and what to expect. However, it is important to note that when telling someone something one must also possess some reasonableness, courage and feeling (to not hurt somebody else’s feelings). Leader internal honesty deals with the question whether the leader is internally honest when in communication with employees – that is, whether he or she is open and honest in expressing his or her needs, feelings, views and beliefs. At the fore of the internal honesty behavioral construct is the question whether the leader is expressing his or her (personal) feelings, thoughts and future actions, and whether (and how) the employees perceive and acknowledge this behavior.

Employee Achievement Recognition (EAR)

Leader behavior, which is reflected in the way that employees feel and know their leader acknowledged and recognized their efforts and achievements or results. This type of leader gives notice to employees whether he or she recognized and acknowledged their (lack of) efforts and achievements.