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Jan Kratzer and Ingo Michelfelder

The distribution of roles among the team members is crucial to their creative performance. Teams require leaders who orchestrate the other members’ access to and the distribution and dissemination of knowledge and information of different kinds. Prior research has stressed the importance of such members or champions, who emerge informally and help to overcoming barriers to innovation. The authors’ literature study addresses the question whether leaders as champions and promoters in different internal and external social networks of teams contribute to the team’s overall creative performance. In addition, this question is investigated in the context of ambidexterity, which links processes of innovating and executing. The study integrates concepts of champion behavior, social network theory, creativity theories, promoter theory, and ambidexterity theory and results in seven propositions.