Action-Centered Team Leadership Influences More than Performance

Frank C. Braun, Michel Avital, Ben Martz

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    Purpose – Building on a social-technical approach to project management, the authors aim to examine the effect of action-centered leadership attributes on team member's learning, knowledge collaboration and job satisfaction during IT-related projects.

    Design/methodology/approach – Structural equation modeling was utilized to assess the work environment of team members as well as the leadership practices of their respective project team leaders. Data were collected with a survey questionnaire from 327 team members in a variety of organizations in 15 industry sectors including financial services, software, manufacturing, retail, government and universities.

    Findings – The identified action-centered project leadership practices (effective task management, team efficacy cultivation, and individual autonomy support) create a project team environment that fosters individual learning and knowledge collaboration along with individual performance and job satisfaction, and ultimately project success.

    Research limitations/implications – The action-centered leadership practices construct, developed in this study, can be a good surrogate measure of what is required to be an effective leader in an IT project team environment. The main limitations of the research are those inherent in the survey method (self-reported; subjective data).

    Practical implications – In a project team environment, it is essential that all team members collaborate effectively to increase the likelihood of project success. The implication for managers from these findings is that concentrating more on the identified action-centered leadership practices can positively influence the team environment.

    Originality/value – Although previous studies have described attributes that influence team performance, a clearer understanding of what team leadership practices enable a project manager to be effective warrants further investigation. A second order construct merges these team leadership practice attributes and validates its use.
    TidsskriftTeam Performance Management
    Udgave nummer3
    Sider (fra-til)176-195
    StatusUdgivet - 2012


    • Action-centered leadership
    • Project teams
    • Knowledge collaboration
    • Job satisfaction
    • Individual learning