CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW
The purpose of this literature review will be to critically evaluate the various empirical studies that have been undertaken regarding the concept effects of leadership styles on employee job satisfaction and turnover. Specifically, the literature analysis will be based on evaluating the gaps that are depicted in literature regarding the research phenomenon.
Before analyzing the relationship between leadership styles and employee job satisfaction and turnover, it is of vital importance to understand the constructs and determinants of job satisfaction, leadership styles and employee turnover. Understanding the above constructs and determinants will enable a critical evaluation of the relationship that exists between leadership styles and employee job satisfaction and employee turnover.
Northouse (2007) defined leadership as a process by which a person influences other people in a view to achieve a set of goals and direct the organization in such a manner that makes it more cohesive and coherent. The definition suggests that there are different components which are key in leadership including: leadership being a process through application of knowledge and skills (process leadership), leadership involves influencing others by having particular traits that can influence others (trait leadership), leadership happens within a group, leadership involve achieving a set of goals and the goals are shared by leaders and their followers. Knowledge and skills contribute to process of leadership directly while processing other characteristics makes a leader unique.
There are different theories of leadership based on qualities that a leader possesses as well as situational factors and skills that a leader has. As a result, there are 8 major leadership theories.
a) Great man theories of leadership
The great man theory of leadership is based on the assumption that the capacity for leadership is inherent where great leaders are born and not made. Therefore this type of leadership is derived from traits that a leader possesses. This type of theory is associated with the 19th Century Scottish historian Thomas Carlyle (1841) who argued that heroes shape history through the vision of their intelligence, beauty of their art, prowess of their leadership and more importantly, their divine inspiration (Eckmann, 2005). At the time, leadership was viewed as a make quality especially in terms of military leadership.
b) Trait theory of leadership
Trait theory of leadership illustrates that the characteristics or personality of an individual is a determinant in for them to be effective leaders. Therefore a potential leader can be identified by studying his personality traits and matching them to the characteristics of the actual leaders. Kouzes & Posner (2002) identified ten traits or characteristics that are needed in a leader including; broad-minded, competent, dependable, fair-minded, honest, intelligent, supportive, and straightforward among others.
c) Contingency theory of leadership
This theory postulate that there is no single best way that managers can lead and therefore the most appropriate style of leadership for a manager will often depend on the situation in which the manager is working under. As a result, managers will often adapt to different leadership styles.
d) Situational theory of leadership
Situational theory of leadership is based on the manner in which people respond or circumstances that they face. As a result, leaders often choose the best course of action based on the situational variable.
e) Behavioral theory of leadership
Behavioral theory of leadership focuses on specific behaviors of leaders and how they act and it is distinguished from trait theory of leadership which focuses on traits. According to this theory, people are able to learn to become leaders through teaching and observation.
f) Participative theory of leadership
Participative theory of leadership indicates that ideal leadership style is one that takes into account the input of others. In participatory theory of leadership, leaders encourage people to participate and contribute to help them feel more relevant and committed to the decision-making process.
g) Management theory of leadership
Management theory of leadership is also referred to as transactional theory of leadership or exchange theory of leadership. It is characterized by transactions that are made between the leader and the follower where its main focus is on the role of supervision, organization and group performance. This type of leadership is mainly used in business when employees are successful they are rewarded and when they fail they are reprimanded or punished.
h) Relationship theory of leadership
Relationship theory of leadership is also referred to transformational theory of leadership. In this type of leadership a person interacts with others and is able to create a good relationship with the individual that results in a high percentage of trust that will later lead to increased motivation which is both intrinsic and extrinsic between the leader and the follower. Therefore this type of leadership motivates and inspires people by helping group members see the value of doing well on the tasks they have been assigned to do.
2.0 Leadership styles
Leadership style is the pattern of behaviors engaged in by the leaders when dealing with employees. There are different leadership styles that exist in a work environment. The goals and culture of the organization may determine which type of leadership is the most suitable within an organizational setting and as a result, leadership style often depends on the organization. Discussed below are different leadership styles.
a) Laissez-Faire leadership style
Laissez-faire leadership style is a type of leadership where leaders are hands off and allow group members to make decision. Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines laissez-faire leadership as a philosophy or practiced that is characterized by deliberate abstention from direction or interference especially with individual freedom of choice and action.
Newman & Griggs (2008) indicated that managers prefer this type of leadership especially in instances where they want to avoid conflict and evade challenging issues within an organization or in a working environment. As a result of this, people refer to laissez-faire leadership style as delegative leadership style and it is characterized by very little guidance from leaders, complete freedom for followers to make decisions, leaders providing the tools and resources needed and group members solving problems on their own without involving the leaders.
This type of leadership style is suitable in situations where group members are professionals who are highly skilled, motivated and are capable of working on their own with minimal supervision from their leaders. Similarly, there is complete freedom for followers to make decision and as such power is handed over to the followers and given the responsibility to make decision. However not all employees have these type of qualities and therefore it is not ideal in situations where group members lack the knowledge that is required to complete a particular task and make decision. Similarly, some people have poor time management and as a result are not capable of meeting time deadlines or accomplishing their tasks and solving problems and therefore guidance from leaders is required.
Laissez-faire type of leadership has been seen to be applicable in advertising agencies, product design firms, and research and development department among others where there is freedom for groups and individuals to make decision.
b) Autocratic leadership style
Autocratic leadership style is a type of leadership which allows managers to make decisions alone without allowing input from other members. It is viewed as an authoritative type of leadership. In this type of leadership, managers possess complete authority and impose their will on the employees where no one challenges the decisions of autocratic leaders.
This type of leadership is suitable in instances where decisions need to be made quickly without consulting with large group of people especially in military situation. However, this type of leadership style is viewed as being bossy, controlling and dictatorial which in most cases can lead to resentment among groups.
c) Participative style of leadership
Participative style of leadership is also referred to as democratic style of leadership and it is a leadership style where members of the group take a participatory approach in decision-making process. This type of leadership style is characterized by group members feeling more engaged in decision making process, opinions are shared even though the leader retains the final say in decision and creativity is encouraged and it is rewarded.
Study has shown that this type of leadership leads to higher productivity among group members. On the contrary, participative style of leadership only works best in situations where group members are skilled and are eager to share their knowledge. Similarly, in situations where time is of essence, this type of leadership can lead to communication failures and time consuming in making decisions.
d) Transactional style of leadership
Transactional style of leadership is also referred to as managerial style of leadership. This is a type of leadership that involves supervision, organization and group performance where leaders promote compliance to the followers through rewards and punishments. Robbins et al (2007) defined transactional style of leadership as a type of leadership where leaders use social exchange for their transactions. In this type of leadership, their followers are compensated for meeting specific goals or performance criteria (Trottier et al, 2008). Managers and the subordinate staff set predetermined goals together and employees agree to abide and follow the leadership style set by the leader or manager to achieve those goals. As a result, employees who achieve a set of goals that are agreed upon are rewarded.
This type of leadership is characterized by rewards and punishment based on the level of compliance attained by the subordinate staff members or the followers. Goals are set and explicit agreement is then made between the leader and their followers based on the structures a culture of the organization. As a result, this type of leadership is seen as being directive and action-oriented. Other characteristics of transactional style of leadership include favoring structured policies and procedures; it is inflexible and very brain draining.
Transactional type of leadership has some benefits as it rewards those who achieve the set target and as result people are motivated to work hard. Similarly, this type of leadership has structures and it is suitable in large organizations where each and every department has different set of goals that need to be achieved within the organization. On the contrary, this type of leadership style has limited creativity based on the fact that the goals and objectives are already set and as such there is little room to maneuver. Again this style of leadership does not reward personal initiatives and as such people should stick to the laid out goals.
e) Transformational style of leadership
Transformational style of leadership is a type of leadership where leaders work with their subordinates to identify the needed change by creating vision to guide the change through inspiration and executing the change that is in line with the committed subordinate staff members. Bass & Avolio (1993) indicated that transformational leadership occurs when leaders uphold the interest of the employees after generating awareness and acceptance for the purpose and assignment of the group so that employees blend beyond their own self-interest for the good of the group. Therefore, transformational leadership encourages managers to view problems from new perspectives, provide support and encourage communication of vision which stimulate emotion and identification.
Bass (1998) indicated that transformational leadership encompasses several attributes including; cooperation and harmony, use of persuasive appeals that is based on reasons, allowing freedom of choice for followers, encouraging followers to look beyond self-interests for common good, creating ethical climate, raising awareness on moral standards and emphasizing on intrinsic motivation and positive development of the followers. Transformational leadership has four main components these are idealized influence, inspirational motivation, individual consideration and intellectual stimulation.
Idealized influence is a situation where leaders serve as ideal role model to the followers by walking the talk and as a result they are admired. Inspirational motivation is a situation where leaders or managers inspire and motivate their subordinate staff members or their followers. Individualized consideration is a situation where leaders or managers demonstrate genuine concern for their needs and feeling for the followers. Intellectual stimulation is a situation where managers or leaders challenge their followers or subordinate staff members to be innovative and creative to achieve a higher level of performance.
There are five main personality traits that have been associated with transformational leader. First is extraversion where one is seen as possessing inspirational traits that is associated with transformational leadership. Second is neuroticism where individual anxiety is related to productivity and they are likely to position themselves to the role of a transformational leadership due to low self-esteem and the tendency to shy aware from leadership responsibilities (Joyce & Judge, 2004). Thirdly is agreeableness, where leaders have great deal of consideration and as a result, they have the charisma to influence individual’s agreeability. Fifth is the conscientiousness where leaders are a product of their conscientiousness based on their management-based ability.
Antonakis et al (2003) demonstrated that transformational leadership can be measured using Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ). There are different versions of MLQ and the current version of MLQ5X has 35 items that are broken down into 9 scales and 4 items that measure each scale. Therefore, the five transformational components that were previously discussed, these are idealized attributes, idealized behavior, inspirational motivation, intellectual stimulation and idealized consideration are viewed as transformational leadership behaviors.
2.1 Job satisfaction
Job satisfaction has been defined in many ways. Judge and Church (2000) indicated that job satisfaction is may be the most extensively researched topic in the history of industrial or organizational psychology. Hoppock (1935) defined job satisfaction as any combination of physiological and environmental circumstances that causes a person truthfully to say I am satisfied with my job. This definition illustrates that job satisfaction is based on the influence of external factors.
Locke (1976) on the other hand defined job satisfaction as a pleasurable or positive emotional state resulting from the appraisal of one’s job or job experience. Building on this definition, Hulin & Judge (2003) indicated that job satisfaction encompasses multidimensional psychological responses to one’s job and that such responses have cognitive (evaluative), affective (or emotional) and behavioral components.
Vroom (1964) defined job description based on the role of the employees in the work place where he indicated that job satisfaction is the effective orientations on the part of individuals towards work roles that they are currently occupying. The definition offered by Spector (1997) on job satisfaction is based on how people feel about their job and various aspects about the job like the extent to which people like or dislike their job. According to Spector therefore, job satisfaction encompasses positive or negative feelings that workers have towards their work.
Kaliski (2007) defined job satisfaction as worker’s sense of achievement and success on the job where it is perceived to be directly linked to productivity as well as to personal well-being. According to Kaliski, job satisfaction involves doing a job that an individual enjoys, doing it well and being rewarded for his or her effort. Further, job satisfaction involves enthusiasm and happiness with an individual’s work and that important ingredient that lead to recognition, income, promotion, and achievement of other goals that results in the feeling and a sense of fulfilment.
Armstrong (2006) defined job satisfaction as the attitude and feeling that people have about their work. Mullins (2005) defined job satisfaction as a complex and multifaceted concept that mean different things to different people and it is usually linked with motivation although the nature of its relationship is not clear. Above this, job satisfaction is more of an attitude and an internal state and associated with personal feeling of achievement either quantitatively or qualitatively.
Based on the definitions above, job satisfaction can be defined based on different functions including the features of the job, the view of others and employee’s personality.
Models of job satisfaction
a) Two-factor theory (motivator-hygiene theory) of job satisfaction
Herzberg et al (1959) addressed job satisfaction in workplace based on the theory of being motivated in the work place. His theory bases job satisfaction on motivation and hygiene factors. Although motivation in a workplace increases the level of job satisfaction, the absence of hygiene in the workplace is likely to cause dissatisfaction. Hygiene is often related to environment and nature of the job which is associated with salary, safe working conditions among others while motivation is associated with the characteristics of the job itself. The two factors discussed above are referred to as Motivation-Hygiene Theory (Davies 2008).
Herzberg gave reasons as to why employees will not feel motivated in the workplace especially when they are confronted with high salaries and great working conditions. As a result it is important for managers to take into account the nature of the job that they have assigned their employees to perform. In his theory, if a manager wants an employee to do a good job, the he or she must first of all have a good job to begin with. Therefore by improving job attitude and productivity, employees should not assume that increased satisfaction can lead to a resulting decrease in dissatisfaction.
b) Discrepancy theory of job satisfaction
Locke (1969) defined discrepancy as the perceived difference between an adopted anchor and a personal understanding of accomplishment within the same direction. The perceived discrepancy can be due to reactions that are emotive, change in perception of accomplishment or belief that can lead to a particular attitude or action. On the other hand, anchor can be due to social pressure, established employment goals, threshold requirements, personal goals free market or existing bias (Micholas, 1985). As a result, discrepancy theory illustrates the source of anxiety and dejection (Higgins, 1999). When a person has not fulfilled or accomplished his responsibility he might feel a sense of anxiety and regret because he feels that he has not performed well. As a result they will feel let down and dejected owing to the fact that they haven’t achieved their goals. In this theory, everyone is required to learn about their role and responsibility they are performing in an organization as well as their functions and if they fail to fulfill their roles responsibility and function in the organization, then they get punished. The ambitions and aspirations that one has in an organization may consolidate to form a set of principles called the ideal self-guide. Therefore when a person fails to get reward, they start feeling a sense of dejection, disappointment or even depressed.
c) Equity theory of job satisfaction
The theory of equity of job satisfaction was first developed by John S. Adams, a behavioral psychologist in 1960s. This theory calls for a balance between an employee’s inputs such as hard work, acceptance, enthusiasm, skill level among others and the employee’s output including salary benefits, intangibles like recognitions among others. The theory illustrates that if an individual has the view that there is inequality between different social groups or individuals then the person is likely to be distressed owing to the ratio between the input and the output are not equal. As a result of this, if two different employees get the same remuneration for a particular job then one of them gets a pay hike while the other does not, then the one who did not get the pay hike will feel distressed in the workplace.
Some psychologists have extended the equity theory illustrating three behavioral response patterns to situations of perceived equity or inequality.
d) Affect theory of job satisfaction
Affect theory of job satisfaction is one of the most famous models of job satisfaction that was coined by Edwin A. Locke in 1976.This theory argues that satisfaction is determined by discrepancy between what one wants in a job and what one has in a job. Besides this, the theory states that the value facet of work which includes the degree of autonomy in a position is depended on how much moderates one is satisfied or dissatisfied one becomes when expectations are met or are not met. As a result, when one person values a particular facet of a job, his or her satisfaction level is more greatly impacted both positively when expectations are met and negatively when his or her expectations are not met compared to one who doesn’t value that facet.
e) Job characteristics model of job satisfaction
Job characteristic model of job satisfaction was proposed by Hackman & Oldham who illustrated how a particular job characteristics impact on job outcomes including job satisfaction. This model states that there are five main characteristics (which include; task identity, autonomy, feedback, skill variety and task significance) which impact three psychological states (which include; knowledge of the actual results, experienced responsibility for outcomes and experienced meaningfulness) which in turn influences work outcome (including; job satisfaction, absenteeism and work motivation among others). These five characteristics can be combined to form a motivating potential score (MPS) for a job that can be used as an index of how likely a job may affect the attitude and behavior of an employee.
Factors influencing job satisfaction
Mckenna (2000) showed that job satisfaction tend to increase throughout the working life of an individual. He argued that older people do have better jobs than younger people owing to long career they have had compared to the younger people and as a result, they have had more chances to obtain a desirable job. Similarly, older people have adjusted their expectations downwards over the years and as a result they are more easily contempt. Apart from these, the older people are more likely to opt for early retirement while other remaining older people are satisfied with their job. As a result, this creates a skewed picture of the level of job satisfaction among older people compared to the younger people.
Lefkowitz (1994) carried out a study and realized that women’s job satisfaction is in average lower than men’s job satisfaction. He attributed this phenomena to the fact that women are less invested in their work since women’s income are or previously used to be merely the second income in the house hold. He also attributed the fact that women experience less job satisfaction owing to the trend to have less good jobs overall compared to mem. To him, this illustrated that the difference between men and women in the level of job satisfaction disappeared when variables like age, education, income and status were kept between men and women (Mckenna, 2000).
Studies has shown that genetics play an important role in the intrinsic direct experiences of job satisfaction like challenge or achievement as opposed to extrinsic or environmental factors like working conditions. An experiment was conducted where monozygotic twins were reared apart to establish the genetic influence on job satisfaction. The result indicated that variation in job satisfaction was due to the environmental factors which accounted for 70% and genetic influence which accounted for 30%.
d) Financial reward
Studies conducted on factors affecting job satisfaction also shows that job satisfaction is affected by an employee’s opinion about fairness of the company wage scale as well as the current compensation which the employee may be receiving currently.
e) Relationship with supervisors
The relationship that an employee has with his supervisor will have an effect on job satisfaction in the workplace. Relationship between the employee and his or her supervisor can be positive or negative depending on the communication behaviors such as facial expression, eye contact, vocal expression and body movement that an employee has with his or her supervisor. Therefore recognition for good work will build a good relationship between the employer and the employee. Similarly, the supervisor should always create a sense of feeling that his or her door is always open so that they can discuss what affects their work.
f) Workload and stress level.
Demand arising from too much workload and deadlines can hinder an employee within an organization to attain job satisfaction which at times can be attributed to poor planning and ineffective management.
Measuring job satisfaction
There are different techniques that have been used to measure job satisfaction in an organization. These include the use of Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire and job description index. Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire is a paper-pencil type of questionnaire that can be administered to a group or an individual although it does not take into account sex differences. The questionnaire has short and long form dates from 1967 and 1977 where work features in five levels are measured with the questionnaire. The 1967 version of the questionnaire has different categories of response including; not satisfied, somewhat satisfied, satisfied, very satisfied and extremely satisfied. The 1977 version of the questionnaire also has different responses including; very satisfied, satisfied, neither satisfied, dissatisfied and very dissatisfied.
Compared to the 1967, the 1977 version of the questionnaire is more balanced as it contains the following aspect about the job; co-workers, achievement, activity, advancement, authority, company policies, compensation, moral values, creativity, independence, security, social service, social status, recognition, responsibility, variety and working conditions.
Job description index on the other hand is the most preferred owing to its simplicity in its usage and applicability. In the job index, the questionnaire collects information on all aspect of work and takes sex difference into consideration. Some of the factors considered in job description index include; the nature of work, compensation and benefits, attitude towards supervisors, relation with co-workers and opportunities for promotion.
2.2 Employee turnover
Abassi et al (2000) defined employee turnover as the rotation of workers around labor market, between firms, jobs and occupations and between the states of employment and unemployment. Price (1977) defined turnover as the ratio of the number of organizational members who have left during the period being considered divided by the average number of people in that organization during the average period.
Sources of employee turnover
a) Job related factors
Studies have been carried out to determine people’s intention to quit by investigating possible antecedents of employees’ intentions to quit their jobs. However currently there are no substantive findings that illustrate why people leaves their jobs due to the diversity of people employed that were included by the researchers and the lack of consistency in their findings. As a result there are several reasons as to why people may quit their jobs or move from one organization to the next. These include job related stress, lack of commitment in the organization and job dissatisfaction are some of the factors that may lead to someone quitting his or her job (Firth et al, 2004).
Hence, an individual quitting his or her job is an individual decision. There are other personal factors that may make one to quit his or her job like personal agency, locus control and personal control. Locus control is the extent in which people believe that external factors such as chance and powerful others are in control of the events which influence their lives. Others have argued however those employees quit their jobs due to economic reasons. Mano et al (2004) used economic model to illustrate that people quit from organization due to economic reasons and they used this to predict the labor turnover in the market. Similarly, Idson & Feaster (1990) indicated that large organizations can provide employees with better chances for advancement and higher wages to ensure organizational attachment. As a result employee turnover are likely to be low in large organizations.
Tor et al (1997) however argued that lack of enough information on how to perform the job adequately, lack of clearly established expectations of peer and supervisors, ambiguity of performance evaluation methods, extensive job pressures, lack of consensus on job functions or duties are some of the factors that are likely to cause an employee to feel less involved and less satisfied with their jobs and careers, less committed to their organization and eventually display a propensity to leave the organization. Therefore if the role of the employee is not clearly defined, his or her chances of leaving the organization are much higher.
b) Voluntarily vs involuntary turnover
These are factors that are beyond the control of the management for instance death or incapacity of the member of staff. However currently there are company policies or government regulations which allow the employee to return back to work after such an experience (Simon et al, 2007).
c) Organizational factors
Zuber (2001) indicated that organizational instability have been observed to have contributed to high employee turnover and as a result, employees are more likely to stay when there is a predicable work environment. Similarly, organizations with high level of inefficiency are likely to experience high level of employee turnover. (Alexander et al, 19940).
Based on the aforementioned, employees are likely to stay longer in organizations that are stable and therefore in situations where the organization is not stable, employees are likely to quit in search of stable organizations where they are able to predict their career advancement.
Similarly, Labov (1997) illustrated that organizations that have got strong communication systems are likely to enjoy low employee turnover. As a result, employees are likely to stay longer is situations where they feel that they have been involved in some level of decision making process and they are made to understand the issues that are affecting their working atmosphere. However, in the absence of openness in revealing or sharing information their chances of being empowered are reduced.
Costly et al (1987) indicated that high level of employee turnover is usually associated with poor personnel policies, poor recruitment policies, poor supervisory practices, poor grievance procedures or lack of motivation all of which contribute to employee turnover owing to poor management practice.
Besides this low remuneration can also be a factor that contribute to high employee turnover. Griffeth et al (2000) indicated that pay and pay-related variables affects employee’s turnover. This was determined after examining the relationship between pay, a person’s performance and turnover where it was concluded that when high performance are insufficiently rewarded, they tend to quit. However, if the job provide adequate remuneration, or financial benefits, then the employee is likely to remain in the organization as a result, employees will move to other organization where they are adequately remunerated.
Different scholars have defined employee satisfaction in different ways. Some believes that employee’s satisfaction is obtained by measuring their level of satisfaction using employee satisfaction survey which addresses issues like compensation, workload, perception of management, flexibility, teamwork, resources among others. Nancy (1997) defined satisfaction as the level of fulfilment of one’s needs, wants and desire. Hence satisfaction vary from one individual to the next owing to the fact that it’s based on what an individual wants and what he or she gets. Employee’s level of satisfaction impact an organization’s performance and its overall success. It is therefore important to ensure that employees are satisfied within the organization they are working in.
Locke (1976) defined job satisfaction as the pleasurable or positive emotional state that results from appraisal of an individual’s job experience. Smith et al (1969) on the other hand defined job satisfaction as the feelings or affective responses to faces of situations
There are different ways that have been used to measure employee satisfaction. The most popular methods that have been used in measuring employee satisfaction is fist by observing the trend in employee turnover. If there is a high turnover within an organization, then the level of employee’s satisfaction is low. Similarly, if there is a low turnover within an organization, then the level of employee’s satisfaction within the organization is high. The use of anonymous survey to determine the level of employee’s satisfaction has also been commonly used in different organizations. In the survey, respondents which is the employees are asked different questions in the survey including whether they are satisfied with their duties and responsibility, whether they are considering leaving the organization and whether they are contented with the benefits and compensations they are they have been accorded in the organization.
As indicated by Rau-Foster (1999), there are different symptoms of employee’s dissatisfaction within an organization including increased absenteeism from work, conflict among employees, insubordination, decreased productivity, complaints about insignificant issues at work and increased turnover either through voluntary method or involuntary method. It is therefore important for employees needs to be met within an organization. Barber (1986) on the other hand cited different factors that may prohibit employee’s satisfaction in an organization. These include; nature of work, job security, salary level, relationship with supervisor, relationship with fellow co-workers and recognition and praise for work done among employees.
Similarly, Rane (2011) indicated that signs of high employee satisfaction in an organization are characterized by opportunity for growth in an organization to workers, high compensation packages, opportunities for innovations to workers, provision of resources and tools to workers among others. Elpers & Westhuis (2008) similarly indicated that job satisfaction among social workers can be enhanced by ensuring there is proper pay and benefits, providing opportunities for promotion to workers, creating a supportive and empowering work environment, recognizing and rewarding hardworking employees, ensuring that employees participate in decision making and providing adequate resources to employees to ensure good working environment.
Besides this, there are different models that have been described as factors that determine job satisfaction. Linda & Taylor (1988) described a model referred to as self-interest model where procedure for justice that gives an impression to employees that they have certain authority over expected results which enhance procedural fairness in the organization.
Linda et al (1990) developed a model that describes the factors that determine job satisfaction referred to as Group value Model (GvM). The model indicates that some procedures are considered to be fair based on the fact that their procedure develop a feeling among employees that they are part of the group that was involved in decision making.
Hannum (2005) also developed a model on job satisfaction who indicated that employee’s characteristics such as gender, age, marital status, level of education and rank within the organization may have a positive or negative effect on job satisfaction. In the model, young people are dissatisfied in the organization and older people are more satisfied in the organization.
2.1.1 Challenges leaders face when enhancing effective employee satisfaction
For an organization to stand and be able to achieve its goals, it totally depends on the ability of its leadership to lead with integrity. When the leaders do their work without integrity this will most likely lead to the failure of the organization. In addition leaders must put an effort to retain the employees in the organization and to ensure that the employees are satisfied while working in the organization. Nevertheless leaders face challenges while trying to retain employees and ensuring that they are satisfied in their line of duty. This case shall review the challenges that leaders face while trying to retain employees in the organization and also while trying to bring in job satisfaction to the employee in the organization (Gentry, Harris, Baker & Leslie, 2008).
Job satisfaction is how an employee feels contented about their job, which may be mostly based on the person’s view of satisfaction. It’s another important factor that an organization should put in place to ensure smooth running of the organization. For workers to execute their duties well they have to be satisfied with the services they get from the organization. Despite that fact that job satisfaction has to be there leaders face challenges while trying to ensure the workers are satisfied. The following are the challenges that they face during the effort of bringing in job satisfaction (Gentry et al, 2008).
a) Effective participation and engagement of employees in decision making
Different models have been discussed which illustrates how employees can be engaged so that they feel part of the decision making in an organization to be among the factors which determines employee’s satisfaction. Theoretically the idea is plausible. However, implementing such strategy requires a lot of innovation for such strategies to be implemented. Wagner (1994) defined employee’s participation as the process by which influence is shared among people in areas where hierarchical structures within an organization are unequal.
b) Cultural influence
Cultural influence may inhibit effective employee’s satisfaction within an organization. Different cultural environment within an organization will require different ways of implementing or enhancing employee’s satisfaction within an organization. As a result of cultural differences within an organization, different workers will have different expectations and goals and as a result it is difficult to achieve uniform job satisfaction within an organization. Hofstede (1980) carried out a study on employee attitude within an organization in different countries and established that there are 4 main factors of cultural influence which can ultimately hinder effective implementation of job satisfaction. The four factors included; individualism vs collectivism, uncertainty avoidance vs risk taking, power distance vs extent to which power is equally distributed, and masculinity or feminist.
c) Work situation influence
Work situation influence may also affect managers from effective implementation of job satisfaction. Judge & Church (2000) established that employees evaluate their level of job satisfaction based on different facets including supervision, pay promotion opportunities, co-workers among others. Based on human nature to compare present organization and past organization where the employee was working, or present salary to past salary that an employee was receiving and the cultural organization may affect effective implementation of by managers to implement job satisfaction.
d) Dispositional influence on job satisfaction
Studies have shown that dispositional influence on job satisfaction from employees may pose a challenge to managers when enhancing effective employee’s satisfaction. Staw & Ross (1985) demonstrated that the attitude of an employee towards a particular job may influence job satisfaction and resultantly implementation by managers for effective job satisfaction. Therefore happier people are likely to engage in activities that enhance their positive attitude in the organization and as a result are likely to appreciate management efforts to enhance job satisfaction. On the other hand negative attitude are likely to dampen management efforts to enhance job satisfaction.
e) Compensation of employees
Compensating the employing in a working environment is an important task for it makes employees feel appreciated in the organization, and it also makes them know that they are delivering. Nevertheless, managerial staffs experience challenge while undertaking the task mostly in an upcoming organization. In most case they are not able to compensate worker regardless of their well performed duties. For instance if the organization is running out of resources it becomes impossible to compensate workers financially which might result to discouragement to workers which in essence leads to employees feeling unappreciated (Gentry & Sosik, 2010).
f) Making sure employees know what is expected of them
It is hard for employees to know what is expected of them during their performance of their duties in the organization. Leaders have to make sure they express their expectations from their employees. This may be challenging to leaders due to the fact that workers are diverse on the view of satisfaction in the work place. At times the expectation of leaders may cause dissatisfaction to the workers, thus making leaders to be faced with a challenge of ensuring they satisfy their workers despite their expectations on the work done (Kaur, 2014).
g) Communicating the mission of the company.
Leaders always have a role of communicating the mission of the organization to the employees. This is a challenge since the mission at times does not favor the employees thus bring dissatisfaction to them. In this case job dissatisfaction will make the organization lose workers and also lower the productivity. Thus the employer has a task of ensuring they recruit workers who are in line with the mission of the organization to ensure a good working environment with worker (Leopold, Harris & Watson, 2005).
2.2 Employee retention
Allen (2008) defined employee retention as a management policies and practice that is employed by different organizations to encourage valuable employees to stay committed to working for the organization. Heathfield (2007) Indicated that employee retention in an organization is very important as to managers who want to succeed in the long term as doing so ensure that there is high productivity, satisfaction from co-workers, effective succession planning and increased organizational planning. Moreover, employee retention is the effort made by an organization to keep a work setting which encourages the staffs working within the organization to remain working there. Most of the organizations try their level best to ensure that they retain their employees. Even though it is challenging the management of an organization have to overcome these challenges for it to be successful in attaining its goals (Gentry & Sosik, 2010).
There are different factors that determine retention of the employees. Cole (2000) indicated that employee can stay and become loyal in an organization where employee have value and sense of pride to work to his or her full potential. As a result, staying in an organization is dependent on organizational reward system, growth and development, pay package and work life balance. Similarly, based on the amount of time energy and resource that have been put on the orientation and training of the employees, they tend to prefer employee retention because often at times hiring a qualified candidate is often a tedious process that require resources. Osteraker (1999) indicated that employee satisfaction and retention are one of the most important factors that determine the success of an organization. Van Knippenberg (2000) indicated that when employees identify themselves within a group and contribute to the performance within a group, then they are likely to become more loyal and likely to stay within an organization. Therefore when the performance of the team is high, the employee is likely to remain in the organization. The factors determining employee’s retention include;
Compensation is one of the most important factors that determine the ability of an employee to be retained within an organization especially for employees who give outstanding performance or possesses unique skills which are indispensable to the organization due to the fact that the organization invests a lot of resources on training and orientation of their employees. Lawler (1990) indicated that organizations that offer competitive compensation packages are likely to have low employee turnover due to retention of employees and as a results, they create a culture of excellence.
b) Training and career development
The ability of an organization to invest on employee’s training and career development is considered to be one of the most important factors in employee retention. Messmer (2000) reiterated this by indicating that training and career development offers an incentive for employees to be willing to stay in an organization for long. Similarly, Storey & Sisson (1993) indicated that training and career development is an indication that an organization is committed to an employee.
c) Supervisor support
Supervisor support may also provide a precursor under which an organization is likely to retain its employee. Greenhaus & Callanan (1994) indicated that in situation where the supervisor provides adequate support to his or her subordinate staff members, and that there is an open communication between which creates a good relationship between them, employee’s retention is likely to be high.
Challenges leaders face when enhancing high levels of employees retention
Despite the willingness by the employees to retain their staff members, they are faced with various challenges based on the nature of the organization. Large organization is likely to retain their employees and on the contrary small organization is likely to have high employee turnover and as a result, low employee retention. Discussed below are some of the challenges encountered by leaders when enhancing high levels of employee’s retention.
a) Dissatisfaction from compensation and other benefits
In every organization there are different salary scale and salary budget that are set aside for employees. However, when employee’s expectation particularly on salary, compensation benefits and other rewards are not met, then managers are likely to find it difficult in implementing and enhancing high level of employee’s retention policy.
b) Unrealistic expectation about the job from employees
Most employees have unrealistic expectations about a particular job and as a result, managers often find it difficult to implement individualistic expectation of employees about the job. Expectations about a given job are normally based on the job tittle and duties and responsibilities about the job.
c) Financial situation of the organization
As indicated earlier, the cost that is associated with hiring a new employee is high due to the cost incurred in advertising for the position, training the employee and induction process among others. Therefore employees are likely to retain their employees. However in small organization where compensation benefits are not attractive enough, the skilled employees who are attractive to the employment market are compelled to leave the small organizations in search of greener pastures where there are competitive salaries that are being offered. Hence small organization with low financial power is will often find it difficult to implement employee retention policies due to their inability to attract competitive salary. On the other hand big organization are likely to have a competitive edge when competing for skilled and indispensable staff members due to their ability to “poach” other employees into their organization.
d) Evolving managerial effectiveness
While leaders try to come up with a good managerial effectiveness they may face challenges while trying to streamline issues within the company. In the case of rising important skills for instance prioritization, time managing, strategic reasoning, choice making, and attaining swiftness with the work to be more productive at work. Employees may be unwilling to embrace the skills being implemented in the organization. This can be a big challenge for the employers on whether to retain such employees in the work place since they will drag behind the success of the organization. In such a case if employees are not willing to abide to issues like time management and prioritizing amongst others in the organization the employer can be forced to do away with the employees. This will be another challenge recruiting other workers in the organization which may cause the business to incur other cost (Yukl, 2006).
e) Implementing Change
Technology has been changing every now and then as time goes by. Due to these changes leaders have to be up to date on the changes that arise with the technology. This may force the leaders to implement changes in the work place. While implementing these changes the leaders may face challenge of mobilizing their workers to adapt to these changes. Some of the staffs make unwilling to adapt to changes due to the usefulness of the protocol they have been following before or else they may be unwilling to obey their leaders. Thus, for leaders to implement change in the organization may not be easy (Stiehm, 2002).
On the other hand the changes the leaders might be trying to input may be unfavorable to the workers and this can make the workers to be unsatisfied with the working condition. The leaders have to be responsible enough and deal with the employees’ reaction to the changes. While dealing with the employees’ reaction leaders might not be able to reach all the employees’ desires where they end up losing some of the employees in the organization. In addition, the changes the leaders try to implement in the organization might bring in negative consequences in the company which can lower the productivity of the business. Thus leaders face dilemma while implementing changes in the firm since they are careful to retain employees and to achieve the organization goals (Leopold, Harris & Watson, 2005).
f) Team Building
Team building in an organization is another great challenge that leaders face during their line of duty. Workers in the organization are diverse in their own way this may be a challenge to unite them to become one team. Team building is vital for an organization that is willing to grow and become productive. The task therefore lies in the hands of the leaders to unite the works to become one in the organization. The diversity of the workers may make them unwilling to adapt to the demand of the team building in the organization. Leaders are left with a challenge of coming up with way of uniting their workers even though it might not be an easy task. When managing the team of the worker the executives face a lot of challenges in satisfying them to some extent leaders are forced to do away who are unwilling to join hand with others in the organization. On the other hand the leaders may opt to retain workers who are unwilling to build a team in order to cut down the cost of recruiting other workers. This can make the company productivity go down (Kaur, 2014).
g) Underperformance of the employees.
In an organization workers might not be competent enough to reach the standards required to achieve the goals of the organization. The managerial team of the firm cannot be able to tell the workers who are up to standard while recruiting. In most cases the incompetency of the workers in the organization may lead to underperformance in their line of duty. Therefore, the leaders are forced to offer training and mentorship to the workers on execution of duties which makes the organization to undergo extra cost in order to retain employees. During this training the skills of the workers are enhanced thus improving their performance. Nevertheless some of the employees might take advantage of the skills they acquire and shift to other organizations which is a loss to the organization that offered employees training (Yukl, 2006).
h) Communication between the management and the employees.
The leaders at times are not able to maintain a good communication between them and their workers. This is a major case that can make their workers to be unsatisfied and leave their work places. This is quite challenging for the leaders since some of the workers fear to be open to their leaders in the organization. As a result of this leaders are faced with tough decisions on ensuring communication with the workers in the organization to avoid losing workers (Stiehm, 2002).
Critical evaluation of the relationship between leadership styles and employee job satisfaction and retention
As earlier stated, there are various leadership styles that can be employed in an organization. As postulated by Voon, Lo, Ngui and Ayob (2011), most of the application of leadership styles has been inclined towards enhancing and promoting the efficiency and effectiveness of undertaking organizational operations. Moreover, as postulated Voon et al (2011) continues to state that, little emphasis has been placed on how leadership styles impact employee job satisfaction and employee turnover rates in an organization. For instance, according to Gumusluoglu and Ilsev (2009), effective leadership in an organization leads to higher levels of employee job satisfaction. This is attributed to the fact that effective leadership motivates employees and enables employee feel part and parcel of the organization. The same analysis is also postulated by Babcock-Roberson and Strickland (2010) when they stated that leadership styles such as transformational leadership styles motivates employees in the sense that it is based on the ideological construct of effective employee-leader relationships. Babcock-Roberson and Strickland (2010), continues to state that leadership styles that foster synergetic cooperation between employees and managers subsequently leads to higher levels of job satisfaction. The same analysis is also pointed out by Sageer, Rafat and Agarwal (2012) when they stated that leadership styles such as the democratic leadership leads to higher levels of employee satisfaction as a result of increased employee motivation. Moreover, according to Yiing and Ahmad (2009), leadership styles such as the autocratic leadership that is based on propagation of autocratic and hegemonic leadership practices leads to low levels of employee job satisfaction. The same analysis is also provided by Bushra, Ahmad and Naveed (2011) when they stated that bad leadership styles in organizations leads to demotivated employees which eventually leads to low levels of job satisfaction. According to Nadiri and Tanova (2010), higher levels of employee job satisfaction leads to higher levels of employee retention. Moreover, the same analysis is also provided by Avey, Luthans and Jensen (2009) when they stated that poor leadership styles demotivates employees which subsequently leads to low levels of employee retention.
However, as postulated by Cho, Johanson and Guchait (2009), employee motivation is not only based on effective leadership styles but it is a multifaceted ideology that integrates other organizational aspects such as the organizational environment, employee training and development, organizational performance and employee appraisal and remuneration . The above analysis implies that there is a research gap regarding the relationship between the leadership style and the level of employee job satisfaction. This implies that there is need to evaluate the extent to which leadership styles enhances and promotes higher levels of employee job satisfaction.
Additionally, as postulated by Zhang and Bartol (2010), effective leadership styles promotes employee job satisfaction in the sense that, through effective leadership, managers are able to develop employee training and development initiatives that leads to higher levels of employee job satisfaction. In a study undertaken by Gruman and Saks (2011) stated that employee training and development leads to higher levels of employee job satisfaction in the sense that employees are able to work with a sense of self-determination, confidence and excellence towards achieving organization objectives. The same analysis is also provided by McCallum and O’Connell (2009) when they stated that, effective leadership should enhance employee personal development through undertaking of employee training and development. In another study, Sims, Faraj andYun (2009) stated that through development of employee training and development initiatives, managers are able to motivate employees and promote higher levels of employee job satisfaction as well as increase the levels of employee retention in an organization. Moreover, according to Braun, Peus, Weisweiler and Frey (2013), organizations that embrace transactional and autocratic leadership styles are characterized with low levels of employee retention and satisfaction. This is attributed to the fact that, managers embracing the autocratic leadership ideologies are not able to implement effective employee training and development strategies which eventually leads to low levels of employee job satisfaction and retention rates. However, Aguinis and Kraiger (2009) warns that in order to effectively embrace the concept of employee training and development from a managerial perspective, there is need to integrate and align employee training and development with the organization long term strategies. The above analysis implies that higher levels of employee job satisfaction and retention are achieved through the use of visionary leadership that is aimed at integrating current organizational operations with long term strategic objectives.
Additionally, as postulated by Tims, Bakker and Xanthopoulou (2011), effective leadership styles such as transformational leadership enhances employee job satisfaction through enhancing effective communication and improved organizational efficiency. For instance, according to Amagoh, F. (2009), effective leadership styles motivate employees in the sense that they promote high level and effective communication protocols between the employee and the manager. Moreover, Shuck and Herd (2012) continues to state that effective leadership styles that promote higher interaction between the employee and the manager promotes higher levels of employee job satisfaction in the sense that, such leadership styles bridges the power gap between the managers and the employees. Through bridging the gap, employees are motivated for they feel part and parcel of the organization and that most of their grievances are addressed in an effective manner. The above analysis implies that effective leadership styles that promotes higher levels of interaction between the manager and the employee in an organization leads to higher levels of job satisfaction. However, in a study undertaken by Kim, Knight and Crutsinger, (2009), Kim et al (2009) states that employee job satisfaction is a multifaceted term that should not be constricted to the level of interaction between the manager and the employee. Kim et al (2009) continues to state that, employee job satisfaction is largely determined by employee based motivational factors such and that such factors vary from employee to employee. This presents a major gap that will be addressed through evaluating the extent to which leadership styles enhances employee job satisfaction and retention rates in an organization.
Moreover, another way in which leadership styles enhances employee job satisfaction is through the development of effective employee appraisal and remuneration frameworks. According to Negussie and Demissie (2013), employee appraisal and remuneration is an important parameter in enhancing higher levels of employee job satisfaction in the sense that it enables employee feel effectively remunerated for the initiatives that they have undertaken for the company. The same analysis is also postulated by Hausknecht, Rodda and Howard (2009) when they stated that effective employee remuneration, compensation and appraisal will lead to higher levels of employee job satisfaction and subsequently higher levels of employee retention in an organization. This is attributed to the facts that, through effective employee remuneration and appraisal, an employee is able to limit undertakings in search for greener pastures. Moreover, according to Allen, Bryant and Vardaman (2010), most employees leave an organization in search for better paying jobs and opportunities. However, in order to enhance higher levels of employee retention, managers need to develop effective employee remuneration, appraisal and compensation packages. As stipulated by Morrow (2011), development of such effective employee remuneration, appraisal and compensation programs by managers can motivate employees and foster higher levels of employee job satisfaction and retention.
On the contrary, there are studies that have pointed out that employee job satisfaction and retention is a multifaceted term and the type of leadership employed has little impacts on employee decision to leave the organization as well as on the employee level of motivation. For instance, as postulated by Krug, Wright and Kroll (2014), the employee retention is largely determined by the level at which the employee is motivated which in essence is based on a myriad range of factors. For example, one of the some of the factors that affect the level of employee motivation and retention can be categorized into organizational and individual based variables. Organizational based variables include variables related to the working environment, organizational leadership, the work load, and employee remuneration and appraisal and compensation schemes. On the other hand, individual based factors include the level of employee competence, employee personal development goals and preferred remuneration benefits (Kyndt, Dochy, Michielsen & Moeyaert 2009). The above analysis implies that leadership styles are just among the few factors that affect employee job satisfaction and retention.
Literature review summary
From the above literature analysis, it is evident that leadership styles have an effect on employee job satisfaction and retention. However, little emphasis has been placed on evaluating the relationship between specific leadership styles and employee job satisfaction and intention to leave the organization. This presents a major limitation and a research gap that will be addressed in the research undertaking. Moreover, the research gap us depicted in the sense that there are no empirical studies that evaluates the specific leadership attributes that foster higher levels of job satisfaction and employee retention. Additionally, the research gap is depicted in the sense that the nature of correlation between leadership styles and employee job satisfaction is not fully understood. The research that will be undertaken will address the above identified gap through evaluating the relationship between various leadership styles and the level of employee job satisfaction and retention. Additionally, the research that will be undertaken will address the various challenges facing organizational leaders in enhancing higher levels of employee job satisfaction as well as in enhancing higher levels of employee retention rates. Additionally, the research that will be undertaken will critically evaluate the impacts of various leadership styles on employee job satisfaction and retention.
The research that will be undertaken will employ the use of a quantitative research design in the sense that the main form of data collection will be through the use of questionnaires while the main form of data analysis will be undertaken through the use of statistical analysis. Specifically, the statistical analysis that will be employed will be through the use of one sample t-test and the use of spearman rho-correlation. The choice of the quantitative studies was based on a number of advantages that are associated with quantitative studies. For example, some of the advantages associated with quantitative studies include the following; some of the advantages associated with quantitative design include the following; quantitative research designs emphasize on objectivity, are easy to undertake in terms of data analysis and summary, and that quantitative research designs are appropriate when collecting data from a large number of research participants (Leech & Onwuegbuzie, 2009). Moreover, the research will involve a total of 200 participants that will be recruited from 2 identified organizations in [STATE]. The researcher will employ the use of simple random sampling in selecting the final population sample of 200 participants. Moreover, given the fact that the research is based on human subjects as population sample, various ethical considerations will be undertaken in the research undertaking.
The methodology section is divided into the following sections:
Research design – provides an overview of the research design that will be employed in the undertaking of the research.
Research philosophy – defines the research paradigm, and stipulates the differences between the two research paradigms (phenomenological and positivist paradigms) as well as the analysis of the philosophy that will be employed in the research undertaking.
Sampling procedure – defines the rationale behind the sampling procedure that will be employed in the research undertaking.
Research tradition – defines the research tradition that will be employed in the research undertaking
Explanation of the Exploratory Research – the section defines the concept of exploratory research as well as the uses and limitation of the exploratory research as the main type of research underpinning that will be employed in the research undertaking. Additionally, the analysis involves an examination of various types of research in terms of advantages and disadvantages.
Justification of the exploratory research –the sections describes a brief analysis regarding the rationale for the choice of the exploratory research comparatively to other types of research.
Research tools –identifies the various data collection tools that were used in the research. Specifically, the section evaluates the various advantages and disadvantages of the main data collection tool that will be employed in this case the questionnaire as well as the various steps that will be undertaken in order to enhance higher levels of questionnaire reliability and validity.
A quantitative exploratory research design will be employed to examine the correlation between leadership styles and employee job satisfaction and retention. Job satisfaction can be generally defined as the extent to which employees are contented and motivated with their work (Klassen & Chiu, 2010). On the other hand, retention can be generally defined as the ability of an employee to remain at the organization for more than four years after the employment date (Hausknecht, Rodda & Howard, 2009). The research will target a total of 200 participants from a general sample of 200 research participants. A quantitative exploratory method using the Spearman Rho coefficient test and the one sample t-test will be employed for this study. The choice of an exploratory research was based on a number of advantages associated with exploratory research designs. For example, as postulated by Creswell (2013), some of the advantages associated with exploratory research design include the following; exploratory research designs provides an in-depth understanding of the research phenomenon, they are less costly and easy to undertake, they are flexible to data sources in the sense that a researcher can employ both secondary and primary data sources and that exploratory research enable a researcher to undertake concept testing.
As defined by Gliner and Morgan (2000), a paradigm can be defined as, “a way of thinking about and conducting a research. It is not strictly a methodology, but more of a philosophy that guides how the research is to be conducted.” For example, “Research paradigm and philosophy comprises various factors such as individual’s mental model, his way of seeing thing, different perceptions, variety of beliefs towards reality, etc. This concept influences the beliefs and value of the researchers, so that he can provide valid arguments and terminology to give reliable results .”
The two key philosophical research paradigms, as stated by Collis and Hussey (2003), are phenomenological and positivistic. The phenomenological paradigm is characterised by a qualitative methodology and is described as a research paradigm that seeks to understand the human behaviour, from the researcher’s own frame of reference (Creswell, 1994). On the other hand, the positivism paradigm is underlined by a quantitative research methodology and is illustrated a paradigm that seeks to find out the reasons and evidences of social phenomena, with an objective view (Collis and Hussey, 2003).
Bryman (2004) specified that, under the positivism philosophy, there is development of hypotheses that are subsequently tested in order to explain the laws to be evaluated, and this is defined as the deduction approach. For instance, “Like the ‘resources’ researcher earlier, only phenomena that you can observe will lead to the production of credible data. To generate a research strategy to collect these data you are likely to use existing theory to develop hypotheses. These hypotheses will be tested and confirmed, in whole or part, or refuted, leading to the further development of theory which may then be tested by further research .”
The positivism approach mainly emphasizes on objectivity as opposed to subjectivity. Cooper and Schindler (2006) states that scientists in the positivist approach normally provide viewpoints in an objective manner in order to evaluate their social setting. For example, “According to this paradigm, researchers are interested to collect general information and data from a large social sample instead of focusing details of research. According to this position, researcher’s own beliefs have no value to influence the research study. The positivism philosophical approach is mainly related with the observations and experiments to collect numeric data .”
On the other hand, the phenomenological research is aimed at analysing the realities and understanding how the realities affect human subjects. This means that, phenomenological philosophy emphasizes on attention and careful analysis of things as they appear in the conscious state. For example, according to Tarozzi and Luigina (2010, p. 19), “The object of phenomenological research is the participants’ experience of phenomena, the way in which consciousnesses give meaning to their world in an intersubjective dimension. Experience, where phenomenological social research is located, is the description of the phenomenon as it appears to the researcher’s consciousness.”
The positivism paradigm is the core research philosophy that will be employed in the undertaking of the research, since it is mainly based on quantitative data analysis and emphasizes on objectivity.
Research setting and context
Research setting and context will define the general environment in which the research will be undertaken (Barth, 2007). The research that will be undertaken will aim at evaluating the correlation between leadership styles and job satisfaction and retention among the non-profit organizations in [STATE]. The above analysis implies that the research that will be undertaken will basically be based on data collection from non-profit organizations in the [STATE]. The above analysis depicts the research setting in the sense that it provides the geographical context and setting in which the research will be undertaken defining the scope of the research.
The research that will be undertaken will employ the use of simple random probabilistic sampling in selecting the final population sample of 200 employees working in the two non-profit organizations that will be identified. The 200 employees will be required to fill a questionnaire in order to determine their responses regarding the research questions.
There are various sampling techniques that can be used by a researcher in organizing its sample and participants into a representative sample. The sampling procedures can be broadly categorized into probability samples and non-probability samples. The probability sampling techniques include but not limited to the following techniques; simple sampling, multi-stage clustering, stratified sampling and systematic random sampling. On the other hand, non-probability samplings include but not limited to snowball sampling, theoretical sampling, convenience sampling and quota sampling (Moore & George, 2006).
A simple sampling technique will be employed in the undertaking the research in the sense that simple random sampling is characterized with numerous advantages. For example some of the advantages associated with simple random sampling include the following advantages; simple random sampling is characterized with the participants having equal probabilistic chances of being selected in the final sample which will reduce bias in the research undertaking. For instance, simple random sampling is considered as a probability sampling technique in which every member of the population has the same chances of being selected (Reis & Judd, 2000). For example, Moore & George (2006, p. 22) defines a simple random sample as, “A simple random sample (SRS) of size n consists of n individuals from the population chosen in such a way that every set of n individuals has an equal chance to be the sample actually selected.”
Another advantage associated with simple sampling technique is that it is considered as a cheap sampling method in the sense that, no or little costs are incurred in undertaking of the sampling method. For instance, materials that could be used to assign unique participant identities can be locally customized by the researcher. This reduces the cost of undertaking the simple sampling technique. Also, the simple sampling technique is associated with less time allocation. After identification of the general population from which the sample has to be undertaken from, a researcher can spend little time in undertaking simple sampling technique (Moore & George, 2006).
Saunders et al (2006) states that there are two main types of research tradition which are; the inductive and the deductive research traditions. The deductive research tradition starts by first postulating a hypothesis, and then proceeds to offer a rejection or a confirmed position indicated in the hypothesis based on the results obtained. On the other hand, the inductive research tradition involves the process of first establishing the observation and later making a conclusion based on theory. According to Babbie (2010), most deductive researches are quantitative while inductive researches are qualitative in nature. The research that will be undertaken will employ the use of the deductive research tradition in the sense that the research will be based on the quantitative research design in which hypotheses will be developed and then data analysis undertaken on participants responses to either confirm or reject the developed hypothesis.
Explanation of the Exploratory Research
There are various research types that can be utilized in the undertaking of a research. According to Little (2013), the research types include but not limited to the following research types; descriptive, exploratory, explanatory, comparative, evaluative and predictive research. According to Little (2013), a researcher can effectively apply more than one research type in the process of undertaking the research. A descriptive research can be defined as a research aimed at analysing the characteristics of a phenomena being studied. Little (2013) continue to posit that, an explanatory research design is well suited when analysing and studying a research phenomenon that is not cleared stated.
An explanatory research is normally used in cases where there are little studies regarding the subject area. On the other hand, a comparative research design is aimed at making comparisons between two phenomena being studied. According to Adams (2007), an evaluative research design is aimed at analysing and accessing the outcomes of a research phenomenon. Adams (2007) continue to posit that, a predictive research can be described as a research design aimed at predicting the outcome of a scenario based on some variables. This research paper employed the use of an explanatory research design. The explanatory design will be used in the sense that, little research has been done in the recent past, regarding the correlation between leadership styles and job satisfaction and employee retention.
According to Monroe College (2011), an exploratory research “conducted to provide a better understanding of a situation. It isn’t designed to come up with final answers or decisions. Through exploratory research, researchers hope to produce hypotheses about what is going on in a situation.” Exploratory research is sometimes referred to as a qualitative research. Exploratory research population sample involves a small number of participants, who in most cases are not randomly selected. There are various types of exploratory research that a researcher can effectively utilize in undertaking a research. They include but not limited to the following types; literature search, depth interviews, focus groups, and case analysis (Monroe College, 2011).
An exploratory research can be of the form of a literature search. Literature search exploratory research involves the searching of academic materials relating to the research topic, literature search exploratory research is considered as the least expensive and easiest form of an exploratory research. The search for literature can be undertaken through searching the libraries, databases, websites and internet among other appropriate sources of literature. According to (Monroe College, 2011, 29), “There is an incredible amount of information available in libraries, through online sources, in commercial data bases, and so on. The literature search may involve popular press (newspapers, magazines, etc.), trade literature, academic literature, or published statistics from research firms or governmental agencies such as the U.S. Census Bureau.”
Interviews can be generally defined as a data collection method where research participants are asked questions in order to provide their own opinion about the questions being asked. Interviews are used to obtain firsthand information and tap knowledge of the participants (interviewee). Interviews are considered to be expensive in the sense that, it involves lots of logistic elements. Also, interviews are considered as time consuming since, they require high level planning of scheduling for interview appointments. Also, interviews are subject to bias from both the interviewer and the interviewee. This is attributed to the fact that, the interviewer may rephrase the question in order to suit their own projected research responses. On the other hand, the interviewee might not corporate and provide misleading information regarding the research questions (Gordon & Fleisher, 2011). As Monroe College, (2011, 29) notes, “A series of depth interviews can be very expensive. Well-trained interviewers command high salaries; data are collected from one respondent at a time; and, if recorded, audio/video recordings must be transcribed, coded, and analyzed. This technique, however, can yield important insights and more often than not is well worth the efforts.”
A focus group can be defined as a group of people who discusses a subject under the direction of a moderator. Focus groups are concerned with understanding and analyzing the thoughts of individuals. Focus groups are aimed at understanding how people feel about an idea, concept, phenomena, organization, a process or a product. Focus groups are associated with various advantages which include but not limited to the following advantages (Morgan, 2001):
Synergy-individuals work in groups and can provide a well-organized thought rather than obtaining the thoughts and insights individually.
Stimulation-focus groups are characterized with high levels of stimulation and excitement among the focus group members
Participants may generate ideas and discuss the ideas on the spot.
Focus groups are considered as relatively simple and relatively cheap to administer
On the other hand, one major disadvantage associated with focus group is that, the results obtained from the discussion can be misleading if the focus groups are not conducted properly. For example, “Focus group interviews carry noteworthy disadvantages as well. As discussed briefly already, the small groups and the textual nature of qualitative data makes generalizing results to a larger population scientifically unfeasible…. most other limitations of focus group interviews revolve around poor focus group moderation .”
Also, there are various issues associated with the use of focus group in the undertaking of an exploratory research. They include but not limited to the following; the number of participants in the focus group, the type of people to include in the focus group, the representativeness, diversity and knowledge levels of the focus group members, the qualification of the moderator, the level of interaction among the participants, and the method of recruiting the participants into the focus group (Bloor, 2001).
For instance, “focus groups are small groups of six to ten participants plus one “moderator” brought together to discuss an issue or issues of interest to the researcher and decision maker. Typically, focus group interviews last from sixty to ninety minutes. Focus groups taking less time may not delve deeply enough into the subject matter .” Long focus groups in most cases causes fatigue among the participants, which might subsequently affect the credibility of the data obtained.
Case analysis involves the study of carefully selected case studies in understanding the research phenomena being investigated. A case analysis can be undertaken through the use of unstructured interviews, observing a phenomenon in its natural setting and examining the existing records regarding the phenomena being investigated. According to Monroe College (2011, p. 31), “Researchers can learn a lot about a situation by studying carefully selected examples or cases of the phenomenon. This is the essence of case analysis.” Monroe College (2011) continues to state that, “Case analyses can be performed in lots of different ways. Sometimes internal records are reviewed, sometimes individuals are interviewed, and sometimes situations or people are observed carefully.”
One useful case study technique used in undertaking case studies is the ethnography technique. Ethnography can be considered as the use observation to study phenomenon in their natural setting. Ethnography utilizes the use of both natural observation as well as the use of interviews, video, and audio recordings. For example, according to Monroe College (2011, p.31), “Ethnography is useful as an exploratory research tool because it can allow insights based on real behavior, not just on what people say.”
Justification of the exploratory research
The exploratory research will be adopted for this research due to a number of reasons. Firstly, the exploratory research was selected due to the sample population that was involved in the undertaking of the research. The exploratory research design was selected in the sense that the population sample involved in the study was moderately small given the wide nature and application of the research phenomenon being investigated. As earlier stated, the research sample will include a total of 200 participants. The above research sample basically underscored the importance of selecting the exploratory research. This is attributed to the fact that, exploratory research is well suited for undertaking researches that involve moderately low number of research participants. Additionally, the exploratory research was selected in the sense that it will offer an in-depth analysis and understanding of research concepts being investigated and that exploratory research are best suited for undertaking quantitative researches (Creswell, 2013).
Data collection methods
Data will be collected through the use of questionnaires in which the participants will be allowed to fill in a questionnaire in order to determine their responses. The questionnaire will be divided into two sections that will contain explicit information regarding the research parameters. For instance, the first section of the questionnaire will mainly elicit the participants responses regarding the leadership style employed at the organization. The second part of the questionnaire will contain information that will elicit the participant’s responses regarding the research questions.
According to CDC (2008, p. 1), “A questionnaire is a set of questions for gathering information from individuals. You can administer questionnaires by mail, telephone, using face-to-face interviews, as handouts, or electronically (i.e., by e-mail or through Web-based questionnaires).” CDC (2008) continues to state that, questionnaires are appropriate when resources are limited and data is required from many participants, the researcher needs to collect data about behaviours, beliefs, knowledge and attitudes as well as when the researcher needs to protect the privacy of the participants. Questionnaires will be used to collect relevant information and will be distributed to the relevant respondents on time. The choice of questionnaires was based on a number of advantages associated with the use of questionnaires. For instance, as stipulated by Belk (2006) states that, questionnaires cover a large population at a time, as they would be distributed to different participants at a time and can be collected later or on the same day depending on the willingness of the respondents in addressing the questions. Also, questionnaires are more objective and standardized, and data collected from questionnaire are easy to analyse. Questionnaires are easy to use and are more cost effective compared to other sources of data collection like face to face interviewing. Questionnaires also reduce biasness in the process of collecting data (Kuiper & Clippinger, 2012).
The questionnaires that will be employed in the undertaking of the research will be distributed to employees of the identified non-profit organizations. Questionnaires will used as primary data collection tools while information from secondary sources such as books, and journal articles will be used to supplement data collected from the questionnaires. Employees will be required to fill in the questionnaire and hand it back to the respective representative on due time. In case of difficulties in filling out the questionnaire, employees will be required to obtain directions from the respective company representatives (Belk, 2006). However, there are some disadvantages associated with the use of questionnaires as data collection instruments. For example, one major problem with questionnaires as a tool of data collection is that there is tendency of respondents to forget vital information; they may answer the questions superficially when it is a long one. To counter this, a short but very inclusive semi-structured questionnaire will be deployed in the study (Kuiper & Clippinger, 2012).
Advantages of questionnaires
In general some of the advantages associated with questionnaires include the following;
Responses gathered from questionnaires are more standardized and objective compared to interviews
Questionnaires are also considered as a quick method of collecting information.
Questionnaires can also enable the collection of potential information from the participants.
Disadvantages of questionnaires
On the other hand, there are various disadvantages associated with the use of questionnaires. In general, the disadvantages of questionnaires include but not limited to the following (Cargan, 2007):
Some participants may forget vital information regarding the research questions
Open ended questions may generate numerous information that might be quite difficult to analyze.
Information collected may be subject to bias in the sense that, participants may not be willing to give vital information regarding the research questions.
Printed materials will also be used as secondary data collection tool in obtaining data to supplement the data collected from questionnaires. Printed materials such as peer reviewed journal articles, books, newspaper and relevant publications will be used to supplement the data that will be collected through the use of questionnaires. Printed materials will provide a theoretical framework for backing up the data that will be collected from questionnaires (Kuiper, 2009).
There are two major components that are quite critical in any research methodology. They are research validity and reliability. Validity refers to the measure of truthfulness of a research and is normally aimed at analyzing what the research is intended to measure. On the other hand, reliability can be defined as the extent to which results are consistent over time. Additionally, reliability encompasses issues related to the accuracy presentation of the research population sample. As postulated by Litwin (1995), a research is considered to be reliable, if the same results can be replicated elsewhere using the same methodology.
It is quite challenging in determining the reliability and validity levels of this research a factor attributed to the availability of numerous approaches in measuring validity and reliability in a research. As postulated by (Lincoln & Guba, 2000) However, both quantitative and qualitative are all designed to understand and explain behavior and events, consequences, corollaries, components, and antecedents. This means that, components of both qualitative and quantitative can be used together. Validity of the questionnaire will be achieved through incorporating the various theories of questionnaire design in the development and design of the questionnaire. According to Litwin (1995) reliability and validity of a questionnaire are important aspects to consider in the sense that, a perfectly designed questionnaire should be able to elicit perfect responses from the participants. However, developing a perfect questionnaire that can elicit perfect responses is a complex process fraught with disappointments. The researcher with the help of a panel of experts will develop a simple and inclusive semi-structured questionnaire that can be used to elicit perfect responses from the participants. In designing the questionnaire, the researcher and the panel of experts will follow some seven basic principles in designing the questionnaire (Bradburn, Sudman & Wansink, 2004).
First, the researcher and the panel of experts will employ the use of precise terminologies in the design of the questionnaire. Second, simple language will be used in the design of the questionnaire. Jargons, unnecessary phrases and ambiguity will be avoided in the design of the questionnaire. Third, the researcher and the panel of experts will also avoid unwarranted assumptions as well as prejudice regarding the research participants’ responses. Moreover, the researcher and the panel of experts will ensure that conditional information that will be used in the questionnaire will preceded the main key points in the questions being asked. Also, the researcher and the panel of experts will avoid the use double-barrelled questions. Double-barrelled questions are questions that ask the participants more than one question but provide an option for the participant to only give one answer. In order to avoid the use of double-barrelled questions, the researcher will employ the use of a Likert scale type responses (1 denotes strongly disagree, 2 denotes disagree, 3 denotes neutral, 4 denotes agree, and 5 denotes strongly agree). Moreover, the researcher and the panel of experts will chose an appropriate response format for participants to provide their responses. Finally, the researcher will undertake a pilot study on a total of 20 participants before undertaking the final data collection. Additionally, the researcher distributed the questionnaire to other people with diversified backgrounds in order to aid in the reviewing of the questionnaire that was developed.
Data analysis methods
Data analysis methods will define how the collected data from the research tools will be analyzed. The research undertaken will employ the quantitative research design and quantitative data will be collected through the administration of questionnaires. Data that will be collected from the questionnaires will be entered into SPSS version 20.0 and analyzed through the use of one sample t-test as well as the use of spearman rho coefficient. The use of one sample t-test will be aimed at evaluating the statistical significance of the participants mean responses in order to determine the values of p and t that will offer a basis for rejecting or adopting the developed hypothesis. On the other hand, the spearman rho coefficient analysis will be used to determine the nature of correlation between various leadership styles and employee job satisfaction and employee retention.
Research trustworthiness can be generally refers to the levels of accuracy of the results obtained from the data analysis. Maintaining research trustworthiness in research is considered as a complex process and positivist have challenged the level of trustworthiness especially in qualitative researches. For example, Shenton (2004) states that, “The trustworthiness of qualitative research generally is often questioned by positivists, perhaps because their concepts of validity and reliability cannot be addressed in the same way in naturalistic work.” However, maintaining research trustworthiness in a quantitative research is based on four parameters, which are; credibility, transferability, dependability and conformability (Guba, 1981). In order to enhance research reliability, the following strategies were employed in undertaking the research:
In order to increase the credibility levels in the research, the following strategies will be deployed during the process of undertaking the research; selection of well-established data collection research methods, familiarizing with the research setting, environment and cultures of the research participants prior to undertaking of the research, random sampling of the participants through the use of simple random sampling technique, the use of triangulation through employing the use of objective data collection methods such as through the use of questionnaires, and undertaking a comparison with other researches that have been undertaken in the past (Lodico et al, 2010).
Transferability refers to the level at which the obtained results can be applied to other case study of similar nature (Denscombe, 2010). Transferability levels will be maintained through incorporating many research participants in this case (200) and through data collection from well-known and reputable non-profit organizations.
Dependability defines the extent to which the same results can be obtained if similar research is undertaken under the same circumstances and context. For example, “To check the dependability of a qualitative study, one looks to see if the researcher has been careless or made mistakes in conceptualizing the study, collecting the data, interpreting the findings and reporting results. The logic used for selecting people and events to observe, interview, and include in the study should be clearly presented. The more consistent the researcher has been in this research process, the more dependable are the results .” A good strategy for enhancing dependability is through undertaking a dependability audit. For example, “A major technique for assessing dependability is the dependability audit in which an independent auditor reviews the activities of the researcher (as recorded in an audit trail in field notes, archives, and reports) to see how well the techniques for meeting the credibility and transferability standards have been followed .”
Dependability in undertaking the research will be enhanced through adopting the best data collection and analysis methods that are well suited to this type of research as well as ensuring consistency in undertaking the research. For example, the choice of an exploratory research and a quantitative research design are best indictors of increased levels of dependability. This is attributed to the fact that, little research has been undertaken in the recent past, which makes the exploratory research the best option to undertake research of this genre. Also, the use of a quantitative research design improves the dependability of the research since it is the best research design towards undertaking a research of this genre due to emphasis on higher levels of objectivity.
Confirmability refers to the level of objectivity in the research undertaken. According to (Ghauri, 2004, p. 111), “Confirmability is what objectivity is to quantitative research. Researchers need to demonstrate that their data and the interpretations drawn from it are rooted in circumstances and conditions outside from researchers’ own imagination and are coherent and logically assembled.” For example, “Confirmability questions how the research findings are supported by the data collected. This is a process to establish whether the researcher has been bias during the study; this is due to the assumption that qualitative research allows the research to bring a unique perspective to the study. An external researcher can judge whether this is the case by studying the data collected during the original inquiry .”
Denzin (1994, p. 513) states that, “confirmability builds on audit trails…and involves the use of written field notes, memos, a field diary, process and personal notes, and a reflexive journal.” The same sentiments were also expressed by Lincoln & Guba (1985). As postulated by Lincoln & Guba (1985, p. 319), confirmability can be enhanced through the use of audit trails, in other words, “residue of records stemming from inquiry.” Audit trails are aimed at investigating every aspect of the research paper in order to determine how each conclusion was arrived at. Lincoln and Guba (1985, p. 320) identified six types of data records that can be included in the audit: “(a) raw data (field notes, video and audio recordings), (b) data reduction and analysis products (quantitative summaries, condensed notes, working hypotheses), (c) data reconstruction and synthesis products (thematic categories, interpretations, inferences), (d) process notes procedures and design strategies, trustworthiness notes), (e) materials related to intentions and dispositions (study proposal, field journal), and (f) instrument development information (pilot forms, survey format, schedules).” Confirmability levels will be enhanced through the use of triangulation, undertaking audit trails as well as through the use of objective data collection methods such as questionnaires.
Limitations encountered in the undertaking the research
A number of limitations/constraints will be encountered in the undertaking of the research. They include the following limitations (Monsen et al, 2008).
1) Time constraints: the researcher will be forced to work under strict deadlines in order to meet the limited time allocated for the research undertaking as well as in cases where the respondents will not provide the required information on time (Vithal & Jansen, 1997).
2) Non cooperative respondents: Some respondents are likely not to corporate in availing required information regarding leadership styles at the identified organizations. In such a case, the researcher will be forced to employ a lot of tact in order to ensure that the participants provide the required information without fear of victimization (Mcdaniel & gates, 1998).
3) Hostility- some participants are likely to provide a hostile environment for the researcher in the process of undertaking the research.
4) Ignorance – Some respondents may be ignorant and unwilling to cooperate in the process of research undertaking (Monsen et al, 2008).
Research delimitation is normally used to define the strategy that can be used to determine the research scope. For example, according to Simon (2011), “The delimitations are those characteristics that limit the scope and define the boundaries of your study. The delimitations are in your control. Delimiting factors include the choice of objectives, the research questions, variables of interest, theoretical perspectives that you adopted (as opposed to what could have been adopted), and the population you choose to investigate.” Research delimitation normally starts with the definition of the problem statement. For example, the research sought to investigate the correlation between leadership styles and employee job satisfaction and retention in non-profit organizations in [STATE]. The above sentiments define the research delimitation in the sense that, it defines the type of organizations that will be included in the research undertaking as well as the geographical location in which the data will be collected. According to Simon (2011), “The delimitations section of your study will explicate the criteria of participants to enroll in your study, the geographic region covered in your study, and the profession or organizations involved.”
The research delimitation will be based on the following inclusion criteria
• Organizations characterized non-profit organizations in [STATE]…… [……customer to insert a name of a STATE]
• Participants who have worked for more than four years in the selected non-profit organizations.
As a good research practice, ethical considerations will be undertaken in order to ensure that the research will conform to the stipulated ethical considerations (Pimple, 2008). The following ethical considerations will be considered during the undertaking of the research:
Subjects’ participation in the research will be on a voluntary and upon the consent of the subject. No single participants will be forced to participate in the study and no monetary solicitation will be given to participants or any other favors whatsoever. Moreover, the participants will also be allowed to terminate their participation in the research undertaking at any point of the research without any prior notice whatsoever.
The participants will be informed about the overall purpose of the research as well as the duration of the research that will be undertaken. This will ensure that participants will be aware of the objectives of the research as well reduce any chances of biasness. Also, informing the participants about the purpose and duration of the research will ensure that the participants will able to fill in the questionnaire within the stipulated time frame.
The participants will also be guaranteed a data privacy of their responses and that data collected from the study will solely be used for the chief purpose it is intended to. No participants’ data will be distributed to a third party or used for any other purposes apart that will not have been defined in the research undertaking.
In this chapter, a detailed account of the methodology section has been presented with a key analysis of the research philosophy, research methodology, research tradition, data collection tools, research delimitation and limitation. The research that will be undertaken will be based on a positivist research philosophy and an exploratory research type. The research that will be undertaken will utilize the use of questionnaires as the primary data collection method with the use of printed materials as secondary data sources to supplement. The printed materials will be utilized in order to provide a theoretical framework to back up the opinions of the participants responses. The section also critically evaluates the sampling procedure that will be undertaken in order to select the research participants. In the sampling section, the research will employ the non-probabilistic simple random sampling. The section also describes the various strategies that will be utilized in enhancing the research trustworthiness through emphasizing on confirmability, dependability, transferability and credibility. The analysis and interpretation of the data that will be collected will be undertaken chapter four, which deals with data analysis and interpretation.
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