An exploratory study of managerial leadership in mechanistic, organic and virtual organisations

Muetudhana, Julia (2001-12)

Thesis (MA) -- University of Stellenbosch, 2001.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Current time pressures, complexity, rapid change, global competition, and the merging of computer and communication technology are facilitating a trend toward the virtual workplace. As the growth in the virtual workplace accelerates, organisations face new challenges to cope with new organisational structures and managerial leadership roles. Of particular relevance to this study is that the new organisational forms necessitate new management structures, which might be different from mechanistic structures. It also implies that the prevalence of managerial leadership in different organisational structures might be different. Using the Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ) of Bass & Avolio (1994) and Organisational Structure Questionnaire of Miller & Droge (1986), this research attempted to investigate the prevalence of leadership in mechanistic, organic and virtual structures. Hypotheses were tested to determine the relationship between leadership and structure; leadership and environment; and environment and structure. The data was collected through a field experiment. The study was aimed at middle, senior and top level management. Of the 165 questionnaires sent out, 80 middle level managers, 20 senior level managers and two top level managers completed questionnaires. The results reflect that both transformational and transactional leadership occur in organic organisations. The results also reflect that both transformational and transactional leadership occur in virtual organisations. The results of the survey also show that only some of the organic-mechanistic dimensions predicted the prevalence of leadership in these structures. A positive relationship was found between organic and virtual structures. Environment served as a poor predictor for the prevalence of transformational and transactional leadership in a dynamic or stable environment. The results also confirmed that virtual organisations do occur in dynamic environments. However, no relationship was found between environment uncertainty and either mechanistic or organic structure. Conclusions are drawn from the results obtained and recommendations are made for future research.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: 'N EKSPLORATIEWE STUDIE VAN BESTUURSLEIERSKAP BINNE MEGANISTIESE, ORGANIESE EN VIRTUELE ORGANISASIES. Huidige tydsdruk, kompleksiteit, snelle verandering, globale kompetisie en die samesmelting van rekenaar- en kommunikasietegnologie fasiliteer 'n tendens tot die onstaan van die virtuele werkplek. Met die versnelling van die groei van die virtuele werkplek kom organisasies voor nuwe uitdagings te staan om nuwe organisatoriese strukture en leierskaprolle te hanteer. Veral relevant met betrekking tot hie~die studie, is die feit dat nuwe organisatoriese vorms nuwe bestuurstrukture wat van meganistiese strukture sou kon verskil, noodsaaklik maak. Dit impliseer ook dat die voorkoms van bestuursleierskap binne verskillende organisatoriese strukture verskillend sou kon wees. Hierdie studie poog om die Multifaktor Leierskap-vraelys (Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ)) van Bass en Avolio (1994) en die Organisatoriese Struktuur-vraelys (Organisational Structure Questionnaire) van Miller en Droge (1986) te gebruik om die voorkoms van leierskap binne meganistiese, organiese en virtuele strukture te ondersoek. Hipoteses is getoets om vas te stel wat die verband tussen leierskap, struktuur en omgewing is. Die inligting is deur middel van'n veldeksperiment ingesamel. Dit was gemik op bestuurders op middel-, senior en topbestuurdersvlak. Een honderd vyf-en-sestig vraelyste is uitgestuur en 80 middelvlakbestuurders, 20 senior bestuurders en twee topbestuurders het vrealyste voltooi. Die resultate toon dat beide transformasionale en transaksionele leierskap wei binne organiese organisasies voorkom. Die resultate reftekteer ook dat beide transformasionale en transaksionele leierskap binne virtuele organisasies voorkom. Daarbenewens toon die resultate van die opname dat slegs sommige van die organies-meganistiese dimensies die voorkoms van leierskap binne hierdie strukture voorspel het. 'n Positieve verband is tussen organiese en virtuele strukture gevind. Omgewing het as In swak voorspeller vir die voorkoms van transformasionele en transaksionele leierskap gedien. Die resultate het ook bevestig dat virtuele organisasies wei' binne dinamiese omgewings voorkom. Geen verband kon egter tussen omgewing-onsekerheid en meganistiese of organiese struktuur gevind word nie. Alfeidings is uit die verkree resultate gemaak en voorstelle ten opsigte van toekomstige navorsing word aan die hand gedoen.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/52110
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