Organizational characteristics influencing superleadership in multinational companies

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In the light of contextual developments in social and organizational contexts, such as increasing degrees of globalization, theories on the changing dynamics between leaders and followers in organizations have received greater attention, but still lack empirical evidence. Superleadership is a concept in which distributing leadership, empowerment, and self-leadership are integrated. With superleadership the leader strives to enhance self-leadership amongst the follower. To evoke superleadership, leadership must therefore be distributed, and the followers have to be empowered to cope with these additional responsibilities. An interpretative qualitative study has been conducted to empirically disclose the influence of organizational characteristics on superleadership in multinational organizations. The study has been conducted at a multinational in which the work activities in general are highly professionalized and complex. Two influence mechanisms have been found, mediating the influence of organizational characteristics on superleadership. The first influence mechanism is locus of control, describing whether or not people sense they have control over what happens to them, generally reflecting the people’s self-influence ability and participation in decision making processes. The second influence mechanism is geographical distance, through which leaders are influenced in their leadership style, since they are not able to closely monitor employees’ activities.
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