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Transformational leadership and success of international development projects (ID projects): moderating role of the project team size

Somnoma Edouard Kabore (Faculty of Economics and Management, Gaston Berger University, Saint-Louis, Senegal)
Seydou Sane (Faculty of Economics and Management, Gaston Berger University, Saint-Louis, Senegal)
Pascaline Abo (Faculty of Economics and Management, Gaston Berger University, Saint-Louis, Senegal)

Leadership & Organization Development Journal

ISSN: 0143-7739

Article publication date: 19 February 2021

Issue publication date: 2 June 2021

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Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this study is to evaluate to what extent the project team size influence the relation between transformational leadership and success of international development projects (IDPs). The paper draws on leader-member-exchange (LMX) theory and contextualizes transformational leadership style to temporary project environment particularly that of an official development assistance project in an African context.

Design/methodology/approach

The research is based on the processing of a primary database collected by questionnaire from 111 coordinators of IDPs in Benin. The structural equation method based on the PLS approach was used to test our hypotheses.

Findings

First, the preliminary results reveal that, in the context of IDP, projects managers are much more sensitive to the “management” and “visibility” dimensions than to the “impact” dimension of project success. Then, following the hypothesis test, the results show that transformational leadership has a direct positive influence on the success of IDP. Project team size does not play a moderating role in the relationship between transformational leadership and project success. Also, considering the effect of the specific dimensions of transformational leadership on IDP success, only the “idealized influence” dimension influences directly and positively on the latter.

Originality/value

Research calls for examining the role of team size vis-à-vis transformational leadership style and project success and calls in general for studying project manager's leadership styles. This study contributes to literature by answering such calls. In addition, the originality of this study lies in the evaluation of the influence of the specific dimensions because the exclusive use of leadership forms provides an imperfect and oversimplified picture of reality.

Keywords

Citation

Kabore, S.E., Sane, S. and Abo, P. (2021), "Transformational leadership and success of international development projects (ID projects): moderating role of the project team size", Leadership & Organization Development Journal, Vol. 42 No. 4, pp. 517-530. https://doi.org/10.1108/LODJ-06-2020-0236

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited

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