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Leadership of Introverts: An exploratory study of how introvert managers lead in Sweden
Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
2014 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year))Student thesis
Abstract [en]

Purpose – The purpose of the present study was to shed light on the relatively unknown field of introvert leadership and to identify how introverted leaders use their innate personality to become effective and successful leaders. Design/methodology/approach – Survey methodology was used to assess the occurrence of introvert leaders in a company. Also, six introvert managers working in knowledge-intensive companies were interviewed and asked about how they use introvert traits in their leadership. Findings – The study results show that introvert leaders do exist. Furthermore, the results from the study indicate that the traits the introverted leader embrace the most are engaged listening, taking quiet time, having focused and deep conversations and a methodical and structured way of working. These traits were used in an informing, consulting and supporting way in order to engage subordinates, solve conflicts, making decision and influencing others as well as in strategic planning. The findings suggest that introvert leadership can be connected to a participative or leadership-member exchange leadership style. Research implications – The research findings contribute to the understanding of introvert leadership and how introvert traits are used in engaging and empowering subordinates, conflict handling, decision-making and influencing others. Practical implication – The findings in this study have shown that introvert traits can be as powerful as extrovert traits in leadership and hence the common perception that a leader needs to possess extroverted traits as well as charisma in order to be successful needs to be revisited.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. , 75 p.
Keyword [en]
Introvert, extrovert, personality traits, leader, leadership, style, model
National Category
Business Administration
URN: urn:nbn:se:bth-4499Local ID: diva2:831842
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Available from: 2015-04-22 Created: 2014-06-23 Last updated: 2015-06-30Bibliographically approved

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