Department of Politics and Public Administration

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Paradoxical leadership in ever-changing organizations

Background and Goals

Recent research on ambidextrous leadership (Bledow, Frese, Anderson, Erez, & Farr, 2009; Gebert & Kearney, 2011; Rosing, Frese, & Bausch, 2011) and paradoxical leadership (Lavine, 2014; Smith, Besharov, Wessels, & Chertok, 2012) is a promising new direction for research on effective leadership in innovative and ever-changing organizational environments. However, as those two concepts are similar but still distinct and there are different approaches within ambidextrous leadership (Gebert & Kearney, 2011; Rosing et al., 2011), thorough concept definition and measurement is needed to establish a systematical research program on this promising direction of leadership.
In this research project we first develop an integrated conceptualization of paradoxical leadership. Second, we develop and test a measurement instrument for use in applied field research. Third, we will investigate the mechanisms that tie paradoxical leadership to performance in ever-changing environments.

Collaboration and Funding

This project, sponsored by the Zukunftskolleg Mentorship Program 2014, is conducted together with Prof. Daan van Knippenberg (Rotterdam School of Management).

Selected Literature

Bledow, R., Frese, M., Anderson, N., Erez, M., & Farr, J. (2009). A dialectic perspective on innovation: Conflicting demands, multiple pathways, and ambidexterity. Industrial and Organizational Psychology, 2, 305–337.

Gebert, D., & Kearney, E. (2011). Ambidextre Führung. Zeitschrift für Arbeits- und Organisationspsychologie A&O, 55(2), 74–87. doi:10.1026/0932-4089/a000043 

Smith, W. E., Besharov, M. L., Wessels, A. K., & Chertok, M. (2012). A paradoxical leaderhsip model for social entrepreneurs: Challenges, leadership skills, and pedagoical tools for managing social and commercial demands. Academy of Management Learning & Education, 11(3), 463–478.

Sparr, J. L., & Peus, C. (2014, September). Ambidextrous leadership and employee change responses over the course of change: exploring the role of fairness perceptions. Paper accepted for presentation at the 49th Congress of the DGPs (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Psychologie), Bochum, Germany.

Paradoxical leadership in ever-changing organizations

Background and Goals

Recent research on ambidextrous leadership (Bledow, Frese, Anderson, Erez, & Farr, 2009; Gebert & Kearney, 2011; Rosing, Frese, & Bausch, 2011) and paradoxical leadership (Lavine, 2014; Smith, Besharov, Wessels, & Chertok, 2012) is a promising new direction for research on effective leadership in innovative and ever-changing organizational environments. However, as those two concepts are similar but still distinct and there are different approaches within ambidextrous leadership (Gebert & Kearney, 2011; Rosing et al., 2011), thorough concept definition and measurement is needed to establish a systematical research program on this promising direction of leadership.
In this research project we first develop an integrated conceptualization of paradoxical leadership. Second, we develop and test a measurement instrument for use in applied field research. Third, we will investigate the mechanisms that tie paradoxical leadership to performance in ever-changing environments.

Collaboration and Funding

This project, sponsored by the Zukunftskolleg Mentorship Program 2014, is conducted together with Prof. Daan van Knippenberg (Rotterdam School of Management).

Selected Literature

Bledow, R., Frese, M., Anderson, N., Erez, M., & Farr, J. (2009). A dialectic perspective on innovation: Conflicting demands, multiple pathways, and ambidexterity. Industrial and Organizational Psychology, 2, 305–337.

Gebert, D., & Kearney, E. (2011). Ambidextre Führung. Zeitschrift für Arbeits- und Organisationspsychologie A&O, 55(2), 74–87. doi:10.1026/0932-4089/a000043 

Smith, W. E., Besharov, M. L., Wessels, A. K., & Chertok, M. (2012). A paradoxical leaderhsip model for social entrepreneurs: Challenges, leadership skills, and pedagoical tools for managing social and commercial demands. Academy of Management Learning & Education, 11(3), 463–478.

Sparr, J. L., & Peus, C. (2014, September). Ambidextrous leadership and employee change responses over the course of change: exploring the role of fairness perceptions. Paper accepted for presentation at the 49th Congress of the DGPs (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Psychologie), Bochum, Germany.

The interaction between work and family in the context of international assignments and their impact on deployment success

Multinationale Unternehmen führen in zunehmendem Maße Auslandsentsendungen zur Besetzung freier Stellen und/oder zur Führungskräfteentwicklung durch. Die Abbruchquote der Entsendungen ist jedoch hoch und jeder Abbruch ist mit hohen Kosten für das betroffene Unternehmen verbunden. In der Forschung wurde bereits eine Reihe von Einflussfaktoren auf den Entsendungserfolg identifiziert wie Arbeitsplatzfaktoren, Alter und Geschlecht. Weitgehend vernachlässigt wurde bisher jedoch die Interaktion von Arbeit und Familie. Dies ist überraschend, da in der Forschung immer wieder darauf hingewiesen wird, dass das Zusammenspiel von Arbeit und Familie während einer Entsendung eine zentrale Rolle einnimmt. Dabei kann die Interaktion zwischen Arbeit und Familie zwei Formen annehmen: Sie kann positiv (work-family enrichment) oder negativ (work-family conflict) sein.

Ziel

Gegenstand dieses Forschungsprojekts ist die Untersuchung der Rolle beider Formen der Arbeits-Familieninteraktion auf den Erfolg der Auslandsentsendung von Mitarbeitern. Dieser ist definiert als die Absenz der Intention, die Entsendung vorzeitig zu beenden. Neben den Auswirkungen beider Formen der Interaktion werden die Prädiktoren dieser Interaktion untersucht. Dadurch soll ein Gesamtbild des Prozesses der Wirkungsweise von Arbeits-Familieninteraktion gezeichnet werden. Als Randbedingungen werden individuelle Faktoren wie Coping-Strategien oder Persönlichkeit analysiert, die in diesem Zusammenhang bisher noch nicht untersucht wurden. Das Forschungsprojekt verfolgt folgende leitende Fragestellungen:

Untersuchungsfragen

  1. Welchen Einfluss haben beide Formen der Arbeits-Familieninteraktion (work-family enrichment und work-family conflict) auf den Entsendungserfolg?
  2. Welche Faktoren beeinflussen die jeweilige Form der Arbeits-Familieninteraktion?
  3. Welche Rahmenbedingungen (Moderatoren) sind sowohl für die Entstehung als auch die Auswirkung von Arbeits-Familieninteraktion von Bedeutung?

Vorgehen

Zur Beantwortung der Untersuchungsfragen werden in einem ersten Schritt qualitative Interviews mit Entsandten durchgeführt. Auf Basis der Ergebnisse dieser Vorstudie und der einschlägigen Literatur wird ein Modell zum Einfluss der Arbeits-Familieninteraktion auf den Entsendungserfolg entwickelt. Darüber hinaus werden entsprechende Hypothesen generiert, die anhand einer quantitativen Erhebung überprüft werden. Dazu werden deutsche Entsandte multinationaler Unternehmen befragt. Aus den Ergebnissen werden Implikationen für Forschung und Praxis abgeleitet.

Publikationen

Schütter, H. & Boerner, S. (2013): Illuminating the work-family interface on international assignments: An exploratory approach. Journal of Global Mobility: The Home of Expatriate Management Research 1(1), 46-71.

Schütter, H. (2012). Illuminating the work-family interface on international assignments: an exploratory approach. Konferenzbeitrag präsentiert beim 2012 Academy of Management Annual Meeting, Boston, USA.

Schütter, H. & Boerner, S. (2012). The perception of work-life balance among expatriates: Are work and family allies or enemies while being abroad? Konferenzbeitrag präsentiert beim 2012 European Academy of Management Meeting, Rotterdam, Niederlande.

Diversity and team innovation: The moderating role of transformational leadership

Purpose

The overall aim of this research project is to investigate the promise of transformational leadership in fostering the innovativeness of diverse teams. Informationally diverse teams (i.e., teams whose members differ with regard to their knowledge, skills, and abilities) constitute an essential building block of many organizations, particularly in the areas of product development and research and development. The expectation on the part of the organizations is that the heterogeneous perspectives, skills, and knowledge of the diverse team members lead to an improved overall team innovativeness. However, this expectation cannot be confirmed by extant empirical research; rather, positive, negative, as well as non-significant effects of various attributes of informational diversity on team innovation can be found. Against this background, the analysis of critical contextual conditions (i.e., moderators) appears to be of particular relevance for fostering innovation in diverse teams. At the same time, leadership has only marginally been examined in this context; thus, this research project aims at investigating the moderating role of transformational leadership in informationally diverse teams. In particular, on the basis of the identification of intervening group processes between informational diversity and team innovation (i.e., mediators) the moderating role of transformational leadership is scrutinized. Thereby, transformational leadership appears to be a particularly promising approach since its innovation-enhancing potential has already been demonstrated in other contexts. The guiding question of this research project is: Does informational diversity have a positive impact on team innovation under high levels of transformational leadership?

Research design

For an empirical examination of the theoretical model, research and development teams as well as product development teams from different branches will be surveyed. Data will be gathered from both leaders and members of the teams under investigation. Hypotheses will be tested using multiple regression analysis and structural equation modeling.

Publications

Hüttermann, Hendrik & Boerner, Sabine (2011). Fostering innovation in functionally diverse teams: The two faces of transformational leadership. European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, 20(6), 833-854.

Döring, S., Schreiner, M., & Hüttermann, H. (2010, August). Constructing a collective identity in diverse teams. Paper presented at the 2010 Academy of Management Annual Meeting, Montréal, QC. (Emerald Best Student Paper Award, Academy of Management GDO Divison)

Hüttermann, H., & Boerner, S. (2009, August). Functional diversity and team innovation: The moderating role of transformational leadership. Paper presented at the 2009 Academy of Management Annual Meeting, Chicago, IL.