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Leadership in Geographically Dispersed teams: The Impact of Virtuality on Leader’s Role
Linnaeus University, School of Business and Economics, Department of Organisation and Entrepreneurship.
2017 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 15 credits / 22,5 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Globalization and fast developing technology are allowing organizations to spread their operations across the world. While this is often cost effective and increases companies’ competitiveness, a new challenge for leadership has arisen as people and teams are becoming geographically dispersed. Leaders and followers are relying more heavily on computer-mediated communication instead of traditional face-to-face interaction. The aim of this thesis is to gain a deeper understanding of leadership in geographically dispersed teams. As communication is occurring primarily through virtual channels, the purpose is to study the effect this phenomenon has on the leader’s role and how followers experience virtual leadership. This thesis also outlines the impact of leadership in virtual teams; how to create and maintain team spirit, how to establish trust, and how to ensure team effectiveness. Additionally, this study examines the main challenges and opportunities  in virtual leadership, what competencies are required for virtual leaders, and how important communication is in the concept of virtual leadership. Data for this study was collected from ten various professionals, including both leaders' and followers', by conducting qualitative semi-structured interviews with each individual. The findings of the empirical research show that there is a relatively optimistic attitude towards virtual leadership. However, there are certainly critical challenges when it comes to relationship building, team cohesion, and communication. There is a significant need for raising awareness of virtual leadership, as it is becoming more the norm than the exception in the modern business world.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. , 82 p.
Keyword [en]
Virtual Leadership, Geographic Dispersion, Virtual Teams, Computer-Mediated Communication
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-64578OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-64578DiVA: diva2:1104398
Subject / course
Business Administration - Other
Educational program
Leadership and Management in International Context, Master Programme, 60 credits
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2017-06-09 Created: 2017-06-01 Last updated: 2017-06-09Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
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