IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Outside-the-box, but Inside-the-elevator: A Case of Leadership Myopia Reaching Media


  • Miriam Costea

    () (University of Bucharest, Romania)


Practitioners claim that successful leaders should be able to think out-of-the-box and “first break all the rules”. However, when it comes to organizational regulation inside some public institutions, more often than not the leaders replace the organizational creativity with an extreme exploitation of the existing rules. The “tendency to overinvest in exploitation” (Levinthal & March 1993) of the routines that proved successful in the past is well-known in the literature on organizational learning. In the present study, we examine a specific context in which a traditional rule meant to offer legitimacy to the public leaders was over-exploited up to the point when all national media reacted against the actions of the public institution. Thus, instead of obtaining more legitimacy, the leaders learned the hard way that the organizational rules should be assessed periodically and the obsolete ones be replaced/balanced with new rules, resulting from the exploratory dimension of organizational learning. We consider that an explanation for this specific case of leadership myopia may be found in a recently defined leadership style, ie, the spiritual leadership (Fry, 2003), situated in a case of over-exploiting an impermanent institutionalized rule (Schulz, 2003).

Suggested Citation

  • Miriam Costea, 2013. "Outside-the-box, but Inside-the-elevator: A Case of Leadership Myopia Reaching Media," Manager Journal, Faculty of Business and Administration, University of Bucharest, vol. 17(1), pages 215-224, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:but:manage:v:17:y:2013:i:1:p:215-224

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:but:manage:v:17:y:2013:i:1:p:215-224. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Cosmin Catalin Olteanu). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.