Date of Award

Spring 2019

Document Type

Poster Session

Department

Leadership Studies

Advisor

Sharon Timberlake PhD

Keywords

telecommuting, remote work environments, leadership development

Abstract

The precise definition of "telecommuting" varies, but it is generally defined as the performance of work tasks from home (Glass and Noonan,2016, p. 6). More broadly, the Telework Enhancement Act (2010) defines telecommuting as “a work flexibility arrangement under which an employee performs the duties and responsibilities of such employee’s position, and other authorized activities, from an approved worksite other than the location from which the employee would otherwise work” (2010, p. 1). Leadership development in virtual work environments has been explored from the leader perspective, with much of the existing research focusing on the leader’s behaviors, skills, and interactions with the virtual employee workforce. This “top down” research approach minimizes the importance and value of the follower/telecommuting employee’s experience and maintains the focus on the people in roles that have legitimate power and how those people demonstrate leadership behavior with employees who are not co-located. Employees working in a virtual or remote work environments might see their location as an obstacle to gaining leadership development coaching, and the way these employees want to receive leadership development support may differ from their in-office peers. My research leverages Leadership and Communication theories to advance an understanding of leadership development in the virtual work environment through the lens of the telecommuter.

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