Uncovering Implicit Leadership Beliefs, Variation Between Information Technology (IT) Executives and Business Executives in a Public Sector Agency

Stewart, Glenn (2002) Uncovering Implicit Leadership Beliefs, Variation Between Information Technology (IT) Executives and Business Executives in a Public Sector Agency. International Journal of Organisational Behaviour, 5(4), pp. 163-179.


This paper reports on a study to determine the variation of perception of competent leadership and leadership success between the business executive and the information technology (IT) management communities. This study involved the industry partner’s deputy CEO (Deputy Director General), his first line reports (Executive Directors of eight divisions), the CIO, the first line reports (IT Branch Managers) and key business and IT managers. A total of 24 interviews were conducted. The results of the interviews are analysed using phenomenographical techniques. We found that the focus of leadership behaviour is different for the IT community to that of the business community. IT managers are more focused on developing teams to be highly skilled and autonomous, whereas business executives are focused on developing and articulating a vision for their division. These differences show variations in the beliefs of ‘good leadership’, and may in part, explain issues in the relationships between the two communities. The results demonstrate the applicability of phenomenographical techniques to determining implicit leadership beliefs. The combined qualitative/quantitative methodology used in this study may be applicable in studying variations in the perception of leadership in cross-cultural teams and in expectations of leadership in virtual teams.

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ID Code: 9821
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional Information: The contents of this journal can be freely accessed online via the journal’s web page (see hypertext link).
Additional URLs:
ISSN: 1440-5377
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Science and Technology
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2002 Dept. of Human Resource Management and Employment Relations, University of Southern Queensland
Deposited On: 28 Sep 2007 00:00
Last Modified: 15 Jan 2009 07:47

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