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Strictly speaking, we regard leadership as a social phenomenon and not as the performance of a person. Thus, we distance ourselves, in particular from the image of the ‘great man’, which is wide-spread in the Anglo-American world and revolves around concepts such as leadership, charisma, visionary etc.

We clearly distinguish leadership (Luhmann) from authority and power. Leadership is a form of exercising influence and allowing the exercise of influence, which the members of an organisation achieve together. This leadership process is dependent upon the organisational, group-dynamic, interactional as well as psychological conditions. The reduction of any one of these factors leads to an inappropriate reduction of complexity.

Leadership is, from the viewpoint of these meta-theoretical considerations, a reflected interaction of all the guiding processes of psycho-, team-, conflict-, and organisational dynamics defined here.

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