Post-print of: Robson, M & Miller, P 2006, ‘Australian Elite Leaders and Intuition’, Australasian Journal of Business and Social Inquiry, vol. 4, no. 3, pp. 43-61.
Interest in the use of intuition as a viable approach to decision-making and judgements in environments of rapid change and complexity has increased in recent years. Despite this, little research has been conducted in organisational and management settings and in particular the relationship between the use of intuition and effectiveness; in fact, research in Australia concerning these issues is non-existent. This research addresses the stated knowledge gap by examining the role intuition plays in the decision-making and judgements of a small but distinguished sample of leaders of significant Australian organisations referred to in this study as ‘Australian elite leaders’ (AEL). The study focuses on how AEL define, use and experience intuition, and its perceived contribution to their effectiveness. It was found that AEL define intuition as a non-rational, holistic, cognitive process that is enhanced by experience and associated with affect; that AEL regularly use intuition in their judgement and decision-making processes; and that it is considered very important to their effectiveness as leaders.