Information technology self-leadership and innovation

Yeliz Eseryel, Daan Bakker, Deniz Eseryel


We define IT self-leadership as the initiatives of a team’s members to use IT to improve their team performance. This exploratory multiple case study explores how IT self-leadership manifests in teams and how it contributes to the innovativeness of teams. IT self- leadership construct is developed by adapting the self-leadership construct to the information technology context. The study is conducted at six different product- or process-innovative teams, where the context of those teams was distributed between small organizations and large multinationals. Results show that IT self-leadership influences innovative behavior by enhancing communication, feedback, brainstorming, networking, sharing knowledge, visualization and adaptive behavior. Moreover, product innovations appear to be mostly influenced by IT self-leadership through technology driven idea generation. Process innovation on the other hand, is driven by the business and to a lesser degree by IT self-leadership. This paper concludes with practical suggestions to improve IT self-leadership and thereby team innovativeness.

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