Leadership style, anonymity, and creativity in group decision support systems: The mediating role of optimal flow

John Joseph Sosik, Surinder S. Kahai, Bruce J. Avolio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

92 Scopus citations


Prior research indicates that flow, a psychological state characterized by concentration, enjoyment, and intrinsic motivation, may be linked to creativity of individuals participating in computer-mediated meetings. A laboratory experiment was conducted to evaluate the effects of leadership style (transactional contingent reward and transformational) and anonymity level (identified and anonymous) on flow and creativity of 159 undergraduate students working in groups performing a creativity task using a Group Decision Support System (GDSS). Results demonstrated that flow mediated effects of leadership on creativity in a GDSS context, and its role may be moderated by anonymity. Results also indicated that both flow and anonymity were required for enhancing creativity in a GDSS context. Implications for practice and research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)227-256
Number of pages30
JournalJournal of Creative Behavior
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 1999


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Visual Arts and Performing Arts

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