Evidence for the Dispersed Leadership Theory in Teams : A Policy-Capturing Study

Based on the Dispersed Leadership Theory in Teams, we examined the simultaneous influence of three factors on team members’ attitudes and behavior: (1) interactional leadership carried out by leaders, (2) team leadership performed by team members, and (3) structural leadership exerted by work and organizational structures. Results from two policycapturing studies revealed that structural, interactional and team leadership simultaneously affect an individual’s behavior in terms of task behavior, task performance and commitment. Results also indicated that the need for dispersed leadership was particularly high in situations with high task uncertainty and where the learning of new task behavior was required. Results from Study 2 further demonstrated the positive relationship between interactional leadership, team leadership, and structural leadership with team members’ task performance and commitment. Taken together, these findings provide evidence for the Dispersed Leadership Theory in Teams which showed a way to structure and extend future leadership research.




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