In the 21st century a leadership is valued more than ever before. Reviewing the leadership literature and theories in the past two decades shows that while leadership has been broadly studied in organizational management literature, it still is a dynamic concept for development of communication toward others, and used to influence subordinates to accomplish the desired goals. However, the wide concept of leadership can be summarised into three interlinked domains: personal characteristics of a leader, leadership style, and situational theories (Fryer et al., 2004). In other words, leadership is a dynamic behaviour and the role of a leader changes with the change in circumstances and traits. Consequently, no ultimate leadership behaviour can exist, and the many ways that leadership has been conceptualized will influence the relationship among leaders and followers who intend real change and results which reflects shared goals. Therefore, effective leadership is required for rapid, complex and discontinuous change. While the role of leadership has long been recognized as success factor in organizations, regarding the context of a specific project, there have still not been enough studies to support the relation between leadership style and project success, particularly in the context of sustainable building construction. However, overall project success consists of some dimensions that depends on the managers leadership style and performance. Corresponding to the competence school of leadership, (Dulewicz and Higgs (2005) performed a detailed review of current theories and determined fifteen leadership dimensions that can be divided under two competences, intellectual (IQ) and managerial (MQ) and a personal characteristics measurement named emotional and social dimensions EQ.
Constructions and buildings can contribute significantly to the realisation of sustainable developments. Recent research related to the construction industry is focusing on the increasing concerns related to the usage of natural resources (i.e. water, wood, energy, material) as well as to the production of significant amount of CO2 emission. Additionally, several types of environmental pollutions have been reported during he life cycle of a construction project. Lack of attention to the sector of green construction operation is likely to results in serious environmental problems, therefore the construction industry should be alert to these risks as well as cautious of sustainable alternatives to improve its ecological and social footmark.
Sustainable construction and Leadership
Although leadership has been outlined as success factor for the effective performance of an organization, there is still limited research on the relationship between leadership behaviour of project managers and especially managers in the construction industry. These leaders should have the skills set to endorse a positive culture towards sustainable development. In a recent study (Hwang and Ng 2013) explored the challengers in green construction projects and they identified in the study the knowledge areas and the skills that a project manager should have to meet the challenges of sustainable development. However, leadership style and competencies of sustainable project managers needs to be further explored for their statistical relationship with project success criteria.
Leader competencies and success criteria for sustainable Building projects
The Malaysian Institute of Architects formed a Sustainability Committee which was established mainly to develop the Green Building Index (GBI) and the related section for accreditation and certification of green-rated buildings in August 2008. The GBI Building rating tools assess the sustainability of buildings based on six key criteria as demonstrated in Table 1 below. Consequently, these specific set of guidelines were employed to measure the success criteria that project mangers attained in their green building projects.