Organizations involved in projects are now focusing on effective leadership as an important success factor (Pinto 1986; Pinto and Slevin 1988). Crawford (2000) suggests that project leadership is the highest ranking category among project management competence factors. Project management leadership style affects overall project performance.
Recent research supports the idea that successful projects are led by individuals who possess not only a blend of technical and management knowledge, but also leadership skills that are internally compatible with the motivation of the project team (Slevin and Pinto, 1988; Turner et al. 1998). Zimmerer and Yasin (1998) found that positive leadership contributed almost 76% to the success of projects. Negative or poor leadership contributed 67% to the failure of projects. Projects which virtual in nature and are rapidly changing their structure make project leadership more challenging. Project leaders need both relationships and task oriented leadership styles to cope up with the challenges of different phases of project (Slevin and Pinto, 1991). In projects, project leaders must lead his or her team towards completing the defined goal with in a fixed time scale. Verma (1997) states “Achieving the goal or final aim is the ultimate test of leadership”. Goals or tasks are achieved through people thus making people an important resource for projects.
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