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A power-based leadership approach to project management


  • Anita Liu
  • Zhaoyang Fang


The concept of leadership relates to power structuring whereby the project leader may lead and motivate through power disposition. Power, in its diverse guises, combines interpersonal and structural elements and can be enhanced through political manoeuvring. Power may also be distributed unevenly between individuals in the project team. In this article a power-based model of project leadership is developed, underpinned by a behaviour-performance-outcome approach and an appropriate methodology is developed for testing the construction enterprises in China using structural equations modelling. The fitness indices show that the resulting model which postulates that the motivational function of good leadership operates through managing power gaps by means of power-sharing and power-amassing is acceptable. The effects (both predominant magnitudes and statistical significance) from the project managers' referent power to power-sharing and power-amassing show that the project manager's inherent personal traits and credentials are critical to his/her power exercising so as to motivate members to secure management effectiveness.

Suggested Citation

  • Anita Liu & Zhaoyang Fang, 2006. "A power-based leadership approach to project management," Construction Management and Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 24(5), pages 497-507.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:conmgt:v:24:y:2006:i:5:p:497-507
    DOI: 10.1080/01446190600567944

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. repec:cup:apsrev:v:56:y:1962:i:04:p:947-952_00 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Anita Liu & Richard Fellows & Z. Fang, 2003. "The power paradigm of project leadership," Construction Management and Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(8), pages 819-829.
    3. Anthony Walker & Robert Newcombe, 2000. "The positive use of power on a major construction project," Construction Management and Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 18(1), pages 37-44.
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    1. repec:gam:jsusta:v:9:y:2017:i:12:p:2336-:d:122936 is not listed on IDEAS


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