Enablers of a Positive Strategy: Positively Deviant Leadership

Lynn Perry Wooten and Kim S. Cameron

in Oxford Handbook of Positive Psychology and Work

Published in print November 2009 | ISBN: 9780195335446
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

Enablers of a Positive Strategy: Positively Deviant Leadership

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  • Psychology
  • Organizational Psychology
  • Social Psychology



Positive organizational scholarship (POS) provides a new lens for analyzing how organizations conceive, implement, and sustain a strategy. The chapter examines how positively deviant leadership influences strategy through interpersonal relationships, energizing the organization, virtuous behavior, positive emotions, and the creation of meaningful work environments. Positively deviant leadership is grounded in specific processes, techniques, and practices that leaders use to produce extraordinary results. Using the Competing Values Framework as a guide, some of the enablers of a positive strategy are identified. These enablers are represented by contradictory orientations of flexibility and stability and of internal maintenance and external positioning. These orientations form four quadrants representing the organizational capabilities of collaborate, create, compete, and control. Positively deviant leadership competencies that lead to positive strategy are highlighted in each quadrant. The chapter concludes with future research directions and implications for the practice of enabling a positive strategy.

Keywords: strategy; positive organizational scholarship; positively deviant leadership

Article.  8240 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Organizational Psychology ; Social Psychology

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