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J Appl Psychol. 2014 Sep;99(5):771-83. doi: 10.1037/a0036474. Epub 2014 Apr 14.

The dynamics of shared leadership: building trust and enhancing performance.

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TUM School of Management, Technische Universität.
Darla Moore School of Business, University of South Carolina.
Munich School of Management, Ludwig Maximilians Universität München.
Department of Information Science, University of Arkansas at Little Rock.


In this study, we examined how the dynamics of shared leadership are related to group performance. We propose that, over time, the expansion of shared leadership within groups is related to growth in group trust. In turn, growth in group trust is related to performance improvement. Longitudinal data from 142 groups engaged in a strategic simulation game over a 4-month period provide support for positive changes in trust mediating the relationship between positive changes in shared leadership and positive changes in performance. Our findings contribute to the literature on shared leadership and group dynamics by demonstrating how the growth in shared leadership contributes to the emergence of trust and a positive performance trend over time.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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