The development of a principled leadership scale

Hendrikz, Karen (2017-03)

Thesis (MCom)-- Stellenbosch University, 2017.

Thesis

ENGLISH SUMMARY : In South Africa, as scandals of the moral demise of the leaders in the public and private sectors grow, the need for value-based leaders, who lead from an inner moral compass, is continually highlighted. Several value-based leadership scales, measuring either transformational, authentic, servant or ethical leadership exist. However, while these leadership scales each measure an aspect of value-based leadership, none of them measures the concept as a whole. Furthermore, these scales have largely been developed in countries outside of South Africa. A vacuum therefore exists regarding South African-based leadership scales. The primary focus of this study was thus to develop a new leadership scale, the Principled Leadership Scale (PLS), which would be a holistic measure of value-based leader behaviour, and which would be developed within the South African context. The development of the scale was grounded in a thorough analysis of the leader behaviours inherent to transformational, authentic, servant and ethical leadership. From these behaviours, the salient features of a principled leader were distilled. Dimensions which measure principled leadership were formulated as well as items by which the behaviour contained in these dimensions could be measured. These dimensions and items of the PLS were depicted in a conceptual measurement model. A second focus of the study was to contextualise principled leadership within a network of antecedents and outcomes. By exploring the concept of moral intelligence, an answer to what precedes principled behaviour was sought. For principled leadership to be effective, it was also important to explore if it would have a positive effect on outcomes in the work environment. In this context, the effect of principled leadership on trust in the leader, and of trust in the leader on organisational citizenship behaviour was sought. Based on the literature study, a structural model depicting the interaction of these constructs with one another was developed and various hypotheses were postulated. Data for the quantitative study was collected by means of either a paper-based questionnaire or an electronic web-based questionnaire. A total of 300 completed questionnaires were returned. The final questionnaire consisted of four scales: The adapted Moral Competency Inventory (MCI), the Principled Leadership Scale (PLS), the Leader Trust Scale (LTS) and the Organisational Citizenship Behaviour Scale (OCBS). Empirical testing of the postulated models and hypotheses was conducted in two phases, by various statistical methods. First the postulated model of the PLS was tested for reliability, where after exploratory factor analysis and confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) were utilised to test the model for construct validity. During this analysis, one item was eliminated as it was deemed to be a poor item. Reliability of all the dimensions of the PLS was very high. The CFA revealed that acceptable fit was achieved for the measurement model of the refined PLS. Structural equation modelling (SEM) was utilised to determine the extent to which the structural model, in which the variables moral intelligence, principled leadership, trust in the leader and OCB were postulated to interact, fitted the data obtained from the sample. The results indicated acceptable fit of the data. Furthermore, the results revealed that moral intelligence had a positive effect on principled leadership, which had a positive effect on trust in the leader. In turn, trust in the leader had a positive effect on OCB. The present study contributes to the existing literature on leadership in that a new, holistic, value-based leadership scale was developed, which showed acceptable initial results with regards to its reliability and construct validity. Furthermore, it provides insight into the effect of moral intelligence on principled leader behaviour, and of principled leadership on trust in leaders and OCB. The scale has managerial implications in that it could be used in the selection and/or development of leaders in organisations. The limitations and recommendations associated with the study provide additional possibilities for future research.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING : Soos wat daaglikse berigte oor die morele agteruitgang van leiers in die publieke en privaat sektore in Suid Afrika toenemend verskyn, groei die behoefte aan leiers wat hulle leierskap op geinternaliseerde, morele waardes baseer. Verskeie meetinstrumente bestaan wat waarde-gebaseerde leierskap meet, soos transformasionele, outentieke, diensgeorienteerde en etiese leierskap. Die meetinstrumente wat die tipes leierskap meet, meet almal ‘n spesifieke aspek van waarde-gebaseerde leierskap. Wat ontbreek is ‘n meetinstrument wat waarde-gebaseerde leierskap as ‘n holistiese konsep meet. Verder is die meetinstrumente wat tans waarde-gebaseerde leierskap meet hoofsaaklik buite Suid-Afrika ontwikkel. ‘n Verdere leemte is dus ‘n meetinstrument wat in Suid Afrika vir die doel ontwikkel is. Die primere doel van hierdie studie was dus om ‘n holistiese, waarde-gebaseerde meetinstrument, die Principled Leadership Scale (PLS), in die Suid-Afrikaanse konteks te ontwikkel. Die onwikkeling van hierdie meetinstrument was gegrond op ‘n deeglike analise van die gedrag wat eie aan waarde-gebaseerde leiers is, soos wat deur transformasionele, outentieke, diensgeorienteerde en etiese leiers uitgebeeld word. Uit hierdie analise is die leierskapsgedrag wat inherent deel is van ‘n beginselvaste leier geidentifiseer. Dimensies wat beginselvaste leierskap meet is ontwikkel, sowel as items wat die gedrag onderliggend aan die dimensies meet. Hierdie dimensies en items is in ‘n konseptuele metingsmodel uitgebeeld. ‘n Tweede doel van die studie was om die effek van beginselvaste leierskap binne die konteks van die werksomgewing te toets. In die konteks is dit gepostuleer dat morele intelligensie ‘n determinant van beginselvaste leierskap is en dat beginselvaste leierskap ‘n positiewe effek op die vertroue van volgelinge in leiers het. Laastens is daar gepostuleer dat vertroue in die leiers van ‘n organisasie ‘n positiewe effek op organisatoriese burgerskapsgedrag het. ‘n Teoretiese strukturele model is ontwikkel wat die gepostuleerde effek van hierdie veranderlikes op mekaar voorstel. Verskeie hipoteses is geformuleer om sodoende die geldigheid van die voorspellings uit die literatuurstudie te bepaal en te toets. Data vir die kwantitatiewe studie is deur middel van ‘n papier-gebaseerde vraelys of ‘n elektroniese web-gebaseerde vraelys ingesamel. In totaal is 300 voltooide vraelyste ontvang. Die finale vraelys het uit die volgende vier skale bestaan: Die aangepaste Moral Competency Inventory (MCI), die Principled Leadership Scale (PLS), die Leader Trust Scale (LTS) en die Organisational Citizenship Behaviour Scale (OCBS). Die hipoteses van die metingsmodel en strukturele model is empiries deur middel van verskeie statistiese metodes getoets. Die toetsing van die modelle het in twee fases plaasgevind. Tydens die eerste fase het die PLS item- en eksploratiewe faktorontledings ondergaan om die betroubaarheid en faktorstruktuur van die PLS te toets. Die betroubaarheidsontleding het getoon dat al die subskale (dimensies) van die PLS hoe betroubaarheid toon. Die struktuur van die metingsmodel is deur middel van bevestigende faktorontleding ondersoek en die resultate het aangedui dat die metingsmodel die onderliggende data redelik goed pas. Die konstrukgeldigheid van die PLS is dus bevestig. Strukturele vergelykingsmodellering is gebruik om die struktuur van die strukturele model te toets en om die effek van die gepostuleerde interverwantskappe van die veranderlikes in die model te toets. Die resultate het bewys dat die model die onderliggende data redelik goed pas. Die resultate het verder aangedui dat morele intelligensie ‘n positiewe effek op beginselvaste leierskap het en dat beginselvaste leierskap op sy beurt ‘n positiewe effek op vertroue in die leiers van ‘n organisasie het. Die resultate het ook getoon dan vertroue in die leiers ‘n positiewe effek op organisatoriese burgerskapsgedrag het. Die huidige studie dra by tot die bestaande literatuur oor leierskap deurdat ‘n nuwe, geldige en betroubare meetinstrument vir waarde-gebaseerde leierskap ontwikkel is. Die studie bied ook insigte ten opsigte van die effek van morele intelligensie op beginselvaste leierskap; beginselvaste leierskap op vertroue in leiers; en vertroue in leiers op organisatoriese burgerskapsgedrag. Uit ‘n praktiese oogpunt kan die PLS in die werksomgewing gebruik word om beginselvaste leiers te identifiseer en te ontwikkel. Ten slotte is die leemtes van die studie geidentifiseer sowel as aanbevelings vir toekomstige navorsing gemaak.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/101173
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