The Project Management Institute has commissioned the authors to conduct research into whether the project manager’s leadership style is a success factor on projects, and whether its impact is different on different types of projects. In this paper, we review the literature on the topic. Surprisingly, the literature on project success factors does not typically mention the project manager and his or her leadership style or competence as a success factor on projects.
This is in direct contrast to the general management literature, which views effective leadership as a critical success factor in the management of organizations, and has shown that an appropriate leadership style can lead to better performance. Since, unlike most literature on project success factors, project management literature does consider the role of the project manager, we also review what it says about his or her leadership style and competence.