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Distributed leadership and a climate for informal learning as social conditions for facilitating autonomy and competence satisfaction

Langevelde, Stefan van (2013) Distributed leadership and a climate for informal learning as social conditions for facilitating autonomy and competence satisfaction.

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Abstract:In the current economy work depends on the creativity, commitment, perseverance, and ability to learn of knowledge workers. Intrinsic motivation is a key concept to ensure the productivity of knowledge workers. The main purpose of this study is to investigate how the intrinsic motivation of knowledge workers within a team can be supported. The Self-determination theory describes the importance of a supportive social context in facilitating intrinsic motivation through the satisfaction of the basic psychological need for autonomy and competence. We theoretically argue that the theory of distributed leadership and a climate for informal learning are social conditions that can facilitate satisfaction of the need for autonomy (in terms of self-direction, self-initiation and self-determination) and competence (in terms of learning, development and knowledge productivity). To empirically study these theoretical relationships a survey has been conducted in 21 teams of knowledge workers in an organization for child and youth support in the Netherlands. The results show that only a climate for informal learning has a positive relationship with autonomy satisfaction. This indicates that the quality of social interaction is more important than the mere presence of it. For competence satisfaction, a positive and significant relationship with a knowledge worker’s personal influence within a team was found. This indicates that the granting of influence can be perceived as positive feedback, which satisfies the need for competence. Due to a low between-group variance the team level effects on competence could neither be confirmed nor rejected. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Educational Science and Technology MSc (60023)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/64281
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