The Mediated Effects of Transformational Leadership Behaviors and Decision Authority of Project Managers on Project Performance

Thomas G. Lechler / Peter Dominick

This study analyzes empirically the effects of transformational leadership behaviors and formal decision authority of project managers to influence the implementation of projects. Particularly, transformational leadership behaviors are not well understood in the context of projects and in their interactions with other important variables describing sources of influence for leaders. Consequently, the proposed model considers both interaction effects between formal decision authority and transformational leadership behaviors and project specific managerial processes as mediators to better explain project performance. Data were collected with a survey for 105 projects from 160 project managers, 65 senior managers and 195 project team members from a variety of U.S. companies. The empirical results demonstrate the benefits of integrating behavioral perspectives represented by transformational leadership behaviors with structural perspectives represented by formal decision authority. The results are not limited to project management research they have also important consequences for the leadership literature in general.