Empowering the project team: impact of leadership style and team context
journal contributionposted on 21.01.2013, 10:22 by Martin Tuuli, Steve Rowlinson, Richard Fellows, Anita Liu
Purpose – This paper aims to examine the impact of leadership style and team context on structural and psychological empowerment perceptions in project teams. Design/methodology/approach – It was posited that span of control and within team interdependence will positively and significantly influence both structural and psychological empowerment. Person-orientated leadership style was also expected to positively impact both structural and psychological empowerment while task orientated leadership style was expected to have a negative impact. These hypothesized relationships were examined using ordinary least squares (OLS) regression and hierarchical linear modelling (HLM) with data obtained through a parallel quantitative questionnaire survey of construction client, consultant and contractor organizations in Hong Kong. Findings – No significant relationship was found between span of control and any facet of empowerment while team interdependence had a positive and significant relationship with psychological empowerment but not structural empowerment. Task-orientated leadership was positively and significantly related to psychological empowerment in the full sample and contractor teams but not in consultant and client teams. Person-orientated leadership was positively and significantly related to psychological empowerment in the full sample, consultant and client teams but not in contractor teams. Originality/value – The link between leadership style, team context and three facets of empowerment are examined compared with previous studies often focusing on one facet. Sub-sample analysis enabled more subtle differences of the impact of leadership style in different context to be revealed, an indication that samples may not be homogeneous.
This paper is partially supported by the Hong Kong RGC competitive earmarked research grant, project no. HKU 7021/02E, entitled “A cross-cultural study of power disposition in project procurement”.
- Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering