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Leadership and Creativity

  • Alexander Styhre
  • Mats Sundgren

Abstract

The leadership, or management, angle is nearly always absent from the literature on organizational creativity (e.g. Mumford et al., 2002; Jung, 2001). There are several reasons for not taking leadership into account in traditional creativity research. The majority of research has focused on distinct aspects of creativity, among them strategy (Parnell et al., 2000), structure (Damanpour, 1998), climate (Ekvall and Ryhammar, 1999), individual performance (Runco and Sakamoto, 1999), group performance (Amabile and Gryskiewicz, 1989), and dissemination practices (Abrahamson, 1991). However, as Mumford et al. (2002) argue, management is conspicuously absent from the list of potential influences. Management, and leadership, at least traditionally, has not been held to be a particularly significant influence on creativity and innovation. According to several scholars, one reason is that we tend to discount leader influences and creativity may be found in our romantic conception of the creative act — a conception where ideas and innovation are attributed to the heroic efforts of the individual. One aspect that discounts leadership and creativity may also be that the professionalism, expertise, and autonomy that seem to characterize creative people act to neutralize, or substitute for, leadership (Mumford et al., 2002).

Keywords

Intrinsic Motivation Senior Management Creative Process Transformational Leadership Leadership Style 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Alexander Styhre and Mats Sundgren 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alexander Styhre
  • Mats Sundgren

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