The impact of leadership on employee engagement at a chemical manufacturing company in the United States / Edward Michael Colbert.

Colbert, Edward Michael.
viii, 132 p. ; 29 cm.
Local subjects:
Penn dissertations -- Work-Based Learning Leadership.
Work-Based Learning Leadership -- Penn dissertations.
The benefits to an organization of employee engagement have been studied and many positive results have been correlated to employee engagement. The Gallup Organization, for instance, has worked with hundreds of companies doing engagement analyses and has shown that employee engagement leads to positive business outcomes (Fleming, 2009). Academic research has been done over the last several decades making the connection between engaged employees within an organization and that organization's success (Attridge, 2009).
This study focuses on leadership styles and behaviors that drive employee engagement. Transformational, authentic, and transactional leadership styles are examined. Some research has been done studying the impact of leadership styles on employee outcomes (Walumbwa, Wang, Wang, Schaubroeck, & Avoilio, 2010); (Podsakoff, MacKenzie, Moorman, & Fetter, 1990). Authentic leadership has been shown to have a direct impact on employee engagement (Walumbwa et al., 2010). Transformational leadership has been shown to have an impact on one component of employee engagement: employee satisfaction (Podsakoff et al., 1990). The impact of transactional leadership on employee engagement has not been studied. This study first explores the literature that discusses the connections between leadership styles (particularly transformational, authentic, and transactional leadership) and employee engagement. Then, through mixed method research, the study attempts to determine what leadership styles and leadership behaviors are predictors of employee engagement and whether one particular style has more impact than others.
The study found that leadership styles are situational and that leaders do not use one style in all circumstances. The study also finds that leadership style is not a predictor of engagement. However, the study does suggest that certain leadership behaviors have a strong impact on employee engagement. These behaviors are: (a) being transparent; (b) enrolling employees in change activities; (c) involving employees; (d) connecting the dots for employees; and (e) rewarding and recognizing employees.
Adviser: Jonathan A. Supovitz.
Thesis (Ed.D. in Education) -- University of Pennsylvania, 2013.
Includes bibliographical references.
Local notes:
University Microfilms order no.: 3537415.
Supovitz, Jonathan A., advisor.
Betof, Edward H. committee member.
Friedman, Stewart D. committee member.
University of Pennsylvania. Work-Based Learning Leadership.
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