The workplace is changing dramatically and demands for the highest quality of product and service is increasing. To remain competitive in the faze of these pressures, employee morale is crucial. This reality is applicable to all organizations but it is of importance to small and medium sized businesses. Much has been written recently about the need forimproving the education, training and development of organizational workforce. As important as this is, Hersey & Blanchard (1984) argue that, at least equal emphasis must be given to improving the quality of leadership if business is to succeed in achieving greater employee morale and thereby its profitability. Researchers recognize that employee morale (Brockner et al, 1992; Meyer et al, 2004; Allen &Myer, 1990) and leadership styles (Bass, 1997; Bass et al, 2003; Trottier et al, 2008) are of major factors to the organizational success or failure. Allen & Myer (1990) also suggested that the continued interest is a result of the belief that if properly managed, employee morale can result in benefits such as leadership effectiveness, improved employee performance, reduced turnover and absenteeism. The pursued to exploit the potential organizational benefits has resulted in the large number of studies that focus on the nature of employee morale. Leadership is one of the most pressing issues and one of the least understood concepts in the corporate world. The history of leadership encompassesthrough several paradigm shifts and voluminous body of knowledge. As a universal activity, leadership is its influencing process and its resultant outcomes. Such process is determined by the leaders and followers (employees) characteristics, dispositions, behavior perceptions, attributes and the context wherein the process of influencing occurs. The moral purpose of leadership is to create an empowered follower (employee) that leads to moral outcomes that are achieved through moral means (Hensly& Blanchard, 1984). Leadership is the process of directing and influencing the task-oriented activities of group members. (Stoner et al, 2005). Leadership is the art or process of influencing people so that they will strive willingly and enthusiastically toward the achievement of group goals. (Weihrich& Koontz, 2001) Leadership is the ability to persuade others to seek defined objectives enthusiastically. It is that human activity that binds a group together and motivates it towards goals. It is the ultimate act that brings to success their people (Njoku &Nwosu, 2010).
Leaders go beyond the development of common vision; they value the human resources of their organizations. They provide an environment that promotes individual contributions to the organization’s work. Leaders develop and maintain collaborative relationships formed during the development and adoption of the shared vision. They form teams, support team efforts, develop the skills groups and individuals need, and provide the necessary resources, both human and material, to fulfill the sharedvision. Leadership can be seen as the capacity to work, creatively, constructively, and effectively with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities to promote social justice, catalyze social problems (Leadership – Assessment – Result, 2014). Leadership represents individuals involved with balancing varying interests among managers, employees and other business stakeholders (Osmond Vitez, 2014). Leadership of any organization must learn to listen, communicate and recognize its employees in order to boost their morale, and also appreciating employees would also go a long way to raise the morale of the employee in a work place. Thus, the morale of competent employees is critical to the success of the organization.
In any given discipline, the success of a venture can nearly be traced directly back to the vision and will of the leadership. Therefore, having effective leadership for the organization to retain competent employees is crucial to its survival Brocker et al. (1992) recommended that the ability of an organization, to gain a competitive advantage and optimize capital, largely depends, among other factors, on the leadership and employee morale.
James & Collins (2008) suggest that employees develop global beliefs of perceived organizational and perceived supervisor support. Due to the norm of mutual relationship, this support makes the employees feel obligated to exhibit beneficial organizational attitudes (morale).
Although there have been studies that have identified leadership as vital component to and determinant of employee morale (Brockner et al, 1999; Buciuniene & Skudiene (2008) in one hand, and examining the relationship between leadership and employee morale (Avolio et al, 2004; Awan & Mahmood, 2009; Ponnu &Tennakoon, 2009) on the other hand, the number of studies conducted in education organization is lacking, more so in the case of Nigeria.
Therefore, this study is considered important to determine the relationship between leadership of education institutions administers (i.e. transformational, transaction and laissez-faire leadership) and employee morale of instructors (i.e. affective, normativeand continuance) in public higher education institution in Port Harcourt city, a case study of Ken SaroWiwa Polytechnic, Bori.
The overall aim of the study is to explore the relationship between leadership and employee morale in higher education, a case study of Rivers State Polytechnic, Bori. The specific objectives of this study are:
iii. To examine the relationship between transactional leadership and affective,continuance, and normative employee morale.
In view of the above objectives, the aim and specific questions that are to be addressed in this study are:
iii. What is the relationship between transactional leadership and affective,continuance, and normative employee morale?
The significance of this study occurs in many ways. Firstly it studies the association between leadership and employee morale in Ken SaroWiwa Polytechnic, Bori, because this particular type of study had not been previously conducted on this organization. Therefore, its result is important to create awareness to leaders of aforementioned organization about the most determined variables that can influence the morale level of her employees. Secondly, the findings of this study add to the wealth of knowledge in other leadership and employee morale studies. It could also be helpful for individuals who want to conduct further studies in related topic and other organizations those faces similar problems. Inevitably, this study has contributed to the growing body of research on antecedents to leadership and organizational commitment by examining the three important leadership styles and its impact on organizational morale. It is believed that this study would have added value to the literatures on supervisor’s leadership style, especially in the Nigerian setting since there were limited literatures done on similar setting.
The main focus of this study is examining the relationship between leadership and employee morale in Ken Saro Wiwa Polytechnic, Bori. The data for this study is delimited to the academic employees and their leaders of Ken Saro Wiwa Polytechnic, Bori. This study also has its share of delimitation in sampling frame which only considered Ken Saro Wiwa Polytechnic, Boriand therefore the result cannot be generalized to the whole education industry or to other types of organizations of the country. Therefore, any term found in this study should be interpreted in relation to leadership and employee morale in Ken Saro Wiwa Polytechnic, Bori.
Some constraints such as time and lack of sufficient fund hindered the need to include a large sample size that could nearly represent the total population of the study. In order to get a stronger picture of the issues in the instruction I would have liked to involve large number of respondents. But due to the time frame limitations provided by our study program, this was not possible. The shortage of up to date reference material and research works, specifically to the Nigerian context, also narrowed the content of the study.The leadership that was part of this study may not have been extremely important factors in determining employees’ level of organizational morale.
Instead, environmental factors may have been more important for these employees. A further consideration involves the demographics. Result might have been different if percentages for sex, age, time with school, time with lecturers, and education were different. Another barrier I came across in the process of data collection was refusal by some Heads of department to formally permit the distribution of the questionnaire for unconvincing reasons such as lack of time to fill the questionnaire, fear of sensitivity of the questionnaire contents if it results present to the general public, etc. Although, I have a group of participants who were willing to fill the questionnaire, there were some employees who would not volunteer to be part of the study for unknown reasons. Unfortunately, non returned questionnaires were also limited for this study.
In this study in order to make possible clarification and also for this work to be achieved the following terms are defined as follows:
Leadership: is the process of influencing the activities of a subordinate towards the setting of goals and its achievement.
Morale: is an intangible concept that refers to how positive and attributive a subordinate feels toward the organization to which it belongs.
Performance: is a way of bringing or doing something.
Higher Education: is an education at universities or similar educational establishments, especially to degree level.
The next chapter talks about the literature review of this study.
OTHER SIMILAR BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION PROJECTS AND MATERIALS