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Everyday leadership

Everyday leadership is a research program carried out in close cooperation with the Ericsson Group in Sweden. The overall purpose is to advance state-of-the-art expertise in the area of managerial leadership and especially with respect to change management.

In this program, it is assumed that leadership represents a socially constructed phenomenon, defined and maintained on a day-to-day basis. Given people's perception of circumstances, leadership is expected in accordance with a particular set of behavioral standards that is performed by certain individuals or groups of individuals.

The empirical purpose of the studies within the program is to describe, classify and analyze the variety of definitions and expectations related to leadership.

The primary focus is leadership related to everyday work and how such leadership promotes and inhibits development and change. Using a study-design promoting different perspectives (that of top management, middle management, operative management and informal leadership) enable us to direct our attention towards three important and yet somewhat neglected problems in leadership research. First, how does day-to-day leadership facilitate change within specific areas while retaining a sustained commitment to other responsibilities? Secondly, what kinds of solutions are available to resolve the paradoxes and problems associated with conflicts between local and corporate level needs for change and development? Thirdly, how does the leadership of different actors, on a day-to-day basis, contribute to corporate strategy development and implementation as well as strategic change and adoption?

Data are collected through written narratives, interviews, workshops etc. The data-collection covers three main sources; Firstly, stories/narratives from everyday life, where managers describe and comment on their own experiences of leadership. Secondly, semi-structured interviews are conducted with actors involved in change projects as well as informants representing some kind of outside perspective on these change efforts. Thirdly, data are collected from mass media reporting – in particular, newspaper articles from the business press concerning The Ericsson Group's top management leadership and the major turn-around effort in 2002-2003.

Research team:
Mats Tyrstrup and Ingalill Holmberg



Tyrstrup, M (2006) On the Brink of Failure – The Art of Impromptu Action in Everyday Leader­ship, Lund: Studentlitteratur. In Swedish: Tyrstrup (2005) På gränsen till fiasko - om ledarskapets vardag och det improviserande infly­tan­det. Lund: Studentlitteratur.

Tyrstrup, M. (2005) Sovereigns of Time - A Scandinavian View of Executive Work, Time and Leadership. Lund: Studentlitteratur. In Swedish: Tyrstrup (2002) Tidens furstar: om tid, företagsledning och ledarskap, Lund: Studentlittera­tur.

Tyrstrup, M. (2005) Från mytbildning till gudagestalter. In Ericsson, D. & Kallifatides, M. (Eds.) Samtalet fortsätter - Bortom ledarskapets gränser, pp. 18-40. Lund: Academia Adacta.

Holmberg, I. & Tyrstrup, M. (2002) Journeys into Everyday Leadership within the Ericsson Group in Sweden. Paper presented at the Academy of Management Conference Action Reserch, Constructivism and Democracy. Stockholm, June 5-7.

Tyrstrup, M. (2002) På gränsen till fiasko: om företagsamhet, organisering och ledarskap. In Holm­berg, I. & Danielsson, A. (eds.) Ledarskapets olika skepnader - exemplet Hallandsås, Lund: Studentlitteratur.

Columns, Popularized texts and Press (selected)

Lär dig hantera kaos. Svenska Dagbladet, 9 juni 2005

Kaos – Ta de roligt du lære å elske kaoset, Lederne, nr 3, juni, 2005.

Kaos! Lugn - Du kan lära dig älska det. Chef, pp. 5, 14-18, April, 2005

Leda före, under eller efteråt? Forum för ekonomi och teknik (Finish Business Magazine) April 2005.

SPECIAL: Ericsson – det svåra steget från ord till handling, Veckans Affärer, March 7 , 2005 (Interview)

Nya böcker: På gränsen till fiasko – om ledarskapets vardag och det improviserande inflytan­det av Mats Tyrstrup, Personal & Ledarskap, nr 1, 2005

Sjefen må beherske kaos, Dagens Næreingsliv, 9 december 2004.

108 000 jobb med USA-styrt ledarskap. Dagens Industri, pp. 16, June 14, 2004.

Chefer hinner inte planera. Dagens Industri, November, 22, 2004.

Tyrstrup, M. (2004) Vive la renaissance! In Ledmotiv - idéskrift om Ledarskap 6 (2).

Tyrstrup, M. (2003) I valet och kvalet - ledarskap som värderingsproblem. In Ledmotiv - ide­skrift om Ledarskap 5 (1).

Upp som en sol... Veckans Affärer, 26-33: pp. 21, June 21, 2004.

Tänkvärt om hur chefen bäst tar vara på tiden. Personal & Ledarskap, nr 2, 2003.

Den improviserande chefen, In Pharma Industry, Vol. 6, (4), pp. 63-68, 2002.

Den nya tiden kräver gamla tiders ledarskap. Computer Sweden, December 16, 2002.

Kurt Hellström har gjort helt rätt. Finans Vision, October 15, 2002.

Rätt av Ericsson-VD erkänna osäkerhet. Dagens Industri, October 10 2002.

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