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Shared Leadership in a Global Context: Challenges of Transferring Control to Team Members

Advances in Global Leadership

ISBN: 978-1-78635-138-8, eISBN: 978-1-78635-137-1

ISSN: 1535-1203

Publication date: 9 August 2016


This chapter is about how leaders attempt to move from traditional to shared leadership and why they often cannot. We develop a new theoretical framework to examine whether leaders are willing to shift control from themselves to their followers and thus promote shared leadership in their teams. We argue that control shifts, while necessary for shared leadership, are particularly difficult for leaders to enact. This is because leadership is often closely bound with power and status in the organization, a reality of organizational life that is often overlooked in the quest for new forms of leadership, such as shared leadership. Our contribution lies in examining leaders’ ability to enact shared leadership through the lenses of primary and secondary control, and situating control shift in the context of global leadership including selected cultural dimensions, complexity, and paradoxes.



Toegel, G. and Jonsen, K. (2016), "Shared Leadership in a Global Context: Challenges of Transferring Control to Team Members", Advances in Global Leadership (Advances in Global Leadership, Vol. 9), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 151-185.



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