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Establishing a Digital Leadership Barometer for Small and Medium Enterprises (Sme)

Claude Meier, Sybille Sachs, Christian Stutz and Vanessa McSorley
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Claude Meier: University of Applied Sciences, Zurich, Switzerland
Sybille Sachs: University of Applied Sciences, Zurich, Switzerland
Christian Stutz: University of Applied Sciences, Zurich, Switzerland
Vanessa McSorley: University of Applied Sciences, Zurich, Switzerland

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Abstract: In this paper we explain our project of establishing a barometer to capture the actual state of digital leadership in small and medium enterprises (SME) in Switzerland. Drawing on leadership and digitalization literature, we define an ontological frame of leadership that is adequate to consider the social characteristics of digitalization (e.g., enhanced team cooperation). Subsequently, four central categories that constitute digital leadership are derived theoretically: Collaborative, social and integer, inspiring and open, resilience fostering and digital meta-competences. Each of the categories consists of different sub-ordinated aspects that serve as bases for the formulation of the concrete items of the barometer’s questionnaire. Methodologically, the theoretically derived categories and aspects are subjected to a Delphi study, which can be described as a multi-staged questioning of experts. By integrating the view of experts, the aspects can be validated. This is necessary because digital leadership is quite a new phenomenon. At the current stage of the project, preparatory work for the Delphi study is underway. Two Delphi stages of asking around 60 experts to modify, complete and rate the proposed aspects are planned. Based on the Delphi study, the next methodological step is to formulate the definitive items for the barometer’s questionnaire. Its electronic distribution is done in cooperation with SME-associations in Switzerland. To enable longitudinal comparisons, annual executions of the barometer over five years are planned. Whether the theoretical and methodological approaches proposed are appropriate to establish the barometer for digital leadership will be discussed.

Keywords: digital leadership; digitalization; delphi study; questionnaire; barometer (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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