The role of leaders in generating management innovation

Sophia Su*, Kevin Baird

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


This study provides an empirical insight into the level of management innovation in Australian service organisations, conceptualising management innovation using an integrative framework of management innovation which encompasses four dimensions, new managerial practices, processes, structures and techniques. In addition, the study contributes to the contingency-based literature by examining the role of leaders, in respect to both leadership style (initiating and consideration styles) and the use of controls (diagnostic and interactive use), as drivers of management innovation. Data were collected through a mail questionnaire distributed to 445 middle level managers. The findings show that leadership style influences management innovation with a more initiating style associated with the extent of use of new managerial techniques. Management innovation was also influenced by the use of controls with a more interactive (diagnostic) approach associated with the extent of use of new managerial processes and techniques (practices and structure). In line with the Competing Values Framework, the findings highlight the tension involved in the role of leaders in generating management innovation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2758-2779
Number of pages22
JournalThe International Journal of Human Resource Management
Issue number19
Early online date28 Jan 2017
Publication statusPublished - 28 Oct 2018


  • Management innovation
  • leadership style
  • consideration
  • initiating
  • diagnostic
  • interactive


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