Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

A Holistic, Qualitative Case Study Regarding the Leadership Traits and Styles of the Millennial Generation
by Medyanik, Kristine K., D.B.A., Northcentral University, 2016, 118; 10163002
Abstract (Summary)

The Millennials are different than previous generations in several ways including their motivations, expectations, and the strengths and weaknesses they bring to organizations. The specific problem of interest is that currently, leadership traits and leadership styles of Millennials in the financial industry are not well understood. Research of the group has been extensive in relation to their workplace behaviors, but Millennials are now assuming leadership roles. The purpose of this qualitative case study is to understand the prevalent leadership traits and styles of Millennials. Though there is some debate about the birth years of Millennials a birth year sample between 1985 and 1990 was chosen to best capture the group. This set of participants was likely to have some experience in leadership roles in their professional careers. The group of interest has been heavily influenced by technology and has a unique perspective of teamwork, ethics, and feedback cycles, and can be very demanding of their peers and supervisors. How these traits translate into leadership roles was of specific interest to the researcher. A multiple case study methodology was chosen, and a semi-structured interview instrument was used for the purposes of answering the research questions of interest. The instrument used was previously used and is a combination of two study’s interview guides. A sample of 15 candidates were selected. Each participant was born between 1985 and 1990, and had a leadership role in the financial industry. Candidates were sought using convenience and snowball sampling. The candidates were asked 12 semi-structured interview questions, and coding was used to look for patterns against the research provided in the literature review about existing leadership traits and styles. Codes were clustered using higher level and lower level concepts and reassembled to create new narrative information. Cross-case analysis showed good saturation of the data and supported that a number of characteristics the Millennials have shown as employees are transferring to their leadership approach. Participative leadership was heavily favored by the group, to the extent that many appear to act more as a group facilitator than what would traditionally be defined as a leader. This will impact the way accountability is established and how companies can measure group success. Other tendencies that were heavily prevalent included leading by example, happiness as a measure of success and a commitment to using positive reinforcement as a primary motivator. The value of this research adds to the existing body of knowledge about Millennials and can be applied to leadership development and succession planning for existing businesses and management teams.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Clowes, Meena
Commitee:
School: Northcentral University
Department: School of Business and Technology Management
School Location: United States -- Arizona
Source: DAI-A 78/04(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Business administration, Organizational behavior
Keywords: Generational cohort, Millennial leadership, Millennials, Organizational socialism
Publication Number: 10163002
ISBN: 9781369177756
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