The paper reports a qualitative, exploratory study of the experiences of a small sample of architects in terms of leading and managing projects. Specifically, the paper looks at issues specific to architecture as a creative industry and the balance architects have to achieve between the creative and business objectives of their projects. Leadership in projects is examined in the context of projects most often being understood as task-centred and the paper explores the tension between this and modern leadership theory and practice in organisations, both of which tend largely to be based on a focus on persons. In particular, the paper reports findings that relate to managing and leading projects whilst maintaining conditions that are stimulating and motivating for creative workers. The study finds that there is indeed a tension between creative and business objectives in the sampled architecture firms. It finds also that modern person-centred techniques are used by architects when leading and managing projects. These can mitigate negative effects business and creative objectives might have on one another, and are observed to prompt value in projects as the autonomy and scope afforded by these techniques encourages creativity.
- Creative industries, project leadership, situational leadership, transformational leadership, architecture.