Project Management Institute

Leadership behaviors in matrix environments

Previous studies have identified the behaviors that program managers must possess to succeed in matrix organizations. What is not known are those behaviors which senior managers working within matrix organizations need to successfully lead others. This paper examines a 15-concept framework for understanding the behavioral concepts embraced by program managers and executives working within one Fortune 100 company's aerospace unit. In doing so, it overviews the differences between the matrix and the traditional organizational structure as well as the research examining the matrix organization. It then discusses the research to develop the proposed framework, an effort that involved interviews with 47 of the aerospace unit's program managers and executives. It overviews the unit's performance history and the author's research methodology, the grounded theory method; it defines the 15 behavioral concepts identified via the participant interviews.
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