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Corporate Innovation Based on Holistic Leadership: A Case Study of SoftBank

Mitsuru Kodama (Nihon University, Tokyo, Japan)

Developing Holistic Leadership

ISBN: 978-1-78714-422-4, eISBN: 978-1-78714-421-7

Publication date: 12 May 2017


This chapter analyzes and considers new business strategies in the area of ICT, where competition is intense, in regard to mechanisms for companies to achieve ongoing change as a means of realizing corporate innovation. As a case study, the chapter takes a look at Japan’s Softbank, which in recent years acquired Sprint Mobile, a major U.S. carrier, to become the largest mobile communications carrier in the world. When the only vital element for achieving ongoing corporate innovation is the demonstration of top-down leadership as centralized leadership through the presence of certain charismatic leaders or a management team, it will be difficult for a company to achieve ongoing strategic innovation. The presence of not only leaders, managers, and staff who have centralized leadership to assist and foster the development of autonomous, distributed knowledge integration (creation) activities that occur locally in every department within a company, but also leaders, managers, and staff who apply dialectical thinking to various contexts and who promote creative knowledge integration (creation) activities locally through distributed leadership is essential. This chapter analyzes and contemplates mechanisms for achieving corporate innovation through the implementation of dialectical leadership where practitioners at every management layer dynamically differentiate between centralized leadership and distributed leadership or allow for both forms of leadership to coexist to respond to changes in the environment through holistic leadership.



Kodama, M. (2017), "Corporate Innovation Based on Holistic Leadership: A Case Study of SoftBank", Developing Holistic Leadership, Emerald Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 193-214.



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