Track: Business Management
The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role that leaders play during organisational change caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and digitalisation. This is a conceptual paper and research findings are based on information gathered from previously researched topics of varying sources. A qualitative approach was taken in this study which is compatible with the interpretivist paradigm. An exploratory research design was used to understand the general idea of past research on Covid-19, change management, digitalisation, and leadership. 313 articles were considered. The authors have reviewed relevant literature and the research findings identified four main variables that influence leadership which are the context of change, change processes, leadership intelligence, and leadership support. Furthermore, findings suggest that leadership is more than just the behaviour of an individual, it is also a function that is distributed across the entire organisation during change management implementations. Leaders need to act as change agents and consultants during times of continuous transformation, they need to create and develop a culture that is conducive to continuous learning, constant innovation, and ongoing change as well as be supportive of employees during major digital transformations. The prevalence of Covid-19 has increased the need for more knowledge on how to lead and build effective virtual teams. Understanding the digital landscape and its strategic positioning will help in achieving effective results. The value of this paper is related to improving the understanding of how to effectively lead and manage complexities brought by change during times of digitalisation and Covid-19.