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The relationship between personality type and leadership focus.

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dc.contributor.author Sieff, Grant Benjamin
dc.date.accessioned 2007-11-21T09:26:09Z
dc.date.available 2007-11-21T09:26:09Z
dc.date.issued 2007-11-21T09:26:09Z
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10210/132
dc.description.abstract The purpose of this dissertation is to investigate the relationship between personality type and leadership focus. Personality type is studied from the perspective of Jungian Theory and the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator instrument, and leadership focus is explored through the development and application of a Leadership Focus Questionnaire. South African executives form the target population for this research. The overall research problem concerns how best to address the challenges of optimising focus and managing risk that is inherent in strategic leadership. Both functionalist and interpretive approaches were applied to produce a rounded understanding of what constitutes leadership focus. The application of a functionalist approach resulted in three primary theoretical hypotheses being derived from the literature, namely, that leadership focus is a function of (1) optimising the balance of focus between external and internal priorities, (2) the fit between the leadership personality type and the organisation type, and (3) the capacity to manage a multiple focus. The interpretation of the responses from the sample of executives participating in the research study yielded a related set of first and second order factors relating to leadership focus that revolve around the level of comfort experienced by executives in managing focus in the leadership role. The approach to this research was one of methodological triangulation. A survey-based methodology was employed, containing both quantitative and qualitative questions. The results of the quantitative analysis of the relationship between personality type and leadership focus were contrasted and extended by a qualitative content analysis of the qualitative survey responses. The propositions were tested on a sample of South African executives attending management development programmes run by Wits Business School, University of Witwatersrand, in both Johannesburg and Cape Town. The findings show that Extraverted personality types are more comfortable with the challenges of focus in the leadership role than are Introverted types. In addition, Extraverted, Sensing, Thinking and Judging types experience a greater degree of fit with their organisations than do Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling and Perceiving types. The implications are that in a business environment of ongoing change, market innovation and increasing stakeholder expectations, organisation leaders of all personality types need to develop a greater consciousness of their preferred and less preferred behaviours, and a greater ability to complement their preferred leadership behaviours with less preferred behaviours when necessary, to optimise their leadership focus over time. en
dc.description.sponsorship Dr. Loius Carstens en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.subject personality en
dc.subject leadership en
dc.subject Jungian psychology en
dc.subject Myers-Briggs Type Indicator en
dc.subject personality and occupation en
dc.title The relationship between personality type and leadership focus. en
dc.type Thesis en

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