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Agile leadership; collaboration; servant leadership; decision-making; scrum teams; communication; adaptability; motivation theory; team morale and collective wisdom; Human Resources Management; Interpersonal and Small Group Communication; Management Information Systems; Management Sciences and Quantitative Methods
thesis / dissertation description
The purpose of this research is to identify trends within leadership techniques applied in agile projects that lead to project success. Certain motivation and productivity drivers need to be defined in order to understand how to evaluate key project success metrics. My research approach involved reviewing papers that studied theoretical leadership frameworks in decision-making, motivation and information sharing. The methodology applied includes creating a mock project scenario, in which two leadership styles (authoritarian vs. servant) will be tested to understand the relationship between leadership, project performance and team morale. The project will have two team leaders applying the leadership style among 4-5 members respectively. It was important to understand what were the popular notions of “effective leadership,” and how that applies to agile project settings. The results highlighted the need to be adaptive and agile leaders, by responding to different project situations, encouraging creativity and incorporating feedback from different stakeholders. Encouraging collaboration within teams through open communication channels and creating a culture of decentralization, diversity and independence is also crucial. Team and personal leadership values were shown to be inter-connected. This allowed building trust and empowering the team to create innovative solutions, and the servant model of leadership offers a good set of leadership values. As a conclusion, it is important throughout projects to align leadership goals with the project goals of scope, time and cost. Future research needs to be executed for projects across industries, especially for firms transitioning from a traditional waterfall methodology towards adopting agile/scrum processes.