Leadership, organization and health at work: a case study of a Swedish industrial company

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Abstract

The application of knowledge on organization and leadership is important for the promotion of health at workplace. The purpose of this article is to analyse the leadership and organization, including the organizational culture, of a Swedish industrial company in relation to the health of the employees. The leadership in this company has been oriented towards developing and actively promoting a culture and a structure of organization where the employees have a high degree of control over their work situation. According to the employees, this means extensive possibilities for personal development and responsibility, as well as good companionship, which makes them feel well at work. This is also supported by the low sickness rate of the company.

The results indicate that the leadership and organization of this company may have been conducive to the health of the employees interviewed. However, the culture of personal responsibility and the structure of self-managed teams seemed to suit only those who were able to manage the demands of the company and adapt to that kind of organization. Therefore, the findings indicate that the specific context of the technology, the environment and the professional level of the employees need to be taken into consideration when analysing the relation between leadership, organization and health at work.

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