E-leadership for project managers: A study of situational leadership and virtual project success

by Lee, Margaret R., Ph.D., CAPELLA UNIVERSITY, 2010, 198 pages; 3409339


With the current trend toward more virtual, nontraditional projects in the 21st century, research is needed to discover the relationship between e-leadership styles and project success for virtual project managers. This concurrent triangulation mixed methods study explores how and to what extent situational leadership style characteristics, particularly effectiveness and flexibility, affect virtual project success. The Leadership Behavioral Analysis II-Self (LABII-Self) survey was used to assess Project Management Professionals (PMPs®) managing virtual projects. The PMPs’® virtual project was assessed by the project management office staff, program or portfolio manager, project planner or project lead using the Project Implementation Profile (PIP) Project Performance Subscale survey to determine the level of project success. Seventy-four surveys were completed for the study. The results indicated that none of the correlation coefficients attained significance at alpha=.05. Therefore, the null hypothesis that the sample was drawn from a population in which there is no association between situational leadership style and the situational leadership characteristics of flexibility and effectiveness and virtual project success was accepted. The results showed that project managers with high Effectiveness and Flexibility scores have no higher or lower virtual project success scores than project managers with low scores. The results of the triangulation show that in the qualitative responses the majority of project managers responded that they are using or have used situational leadership techniques, but the quantitative results did not support these qualitative suppositions. Based on these conclusions, the implications of this research study are that research regarding applying situational leadership theory to virtual project management remains a gap in the body of knowledge and that more research is needed to develop e-leadership management studies that indicate what factors are effective in influencing the success of virtual projects. Suggested areas for future study include enhancing current or providing new research on e-leadership styles and research on the relationship between traditional management theories (including situational leadership) and the virtual project environment, and the need for improved project success and situational leadership surveys specifically for virtual projects.

AdviserJanice M. Spangenburg
Source TypeDissertation
Publication Number3409339

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