Task Uncertainty and Mission Command in a Naval Context
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Mission command is a leadership philosophy that was designed to ensure that military organizations could operate effectively in uncertain situations. It has become the exemplar of military leadership. This study explores whether an increase in task uncertainty is positively related to appreciation of mission command by crew members of Norwegian state-of-the-art, Nansen-class frigates (N = 174). The result of a simultaneous multiple regression indicates that there is a relationship, but in the opposite direction of what was hypothesized. The greater the task uncertainty, the more the behavior of the preferred leader deviated from mission command. The most important predictor was perceived lack of information, and the more the respondents felt that they lacked information when carrying out their tasks, the more their description of preferred leader behavior deviated from mission command.