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The impact of transformational leadership and work attitude on job performance: the case of Kuwait’s banking sector

The impact of transformational leadership and work attitude on job performance: the case of Kuwait’s banking sector
The impact of transformational leadership and work attitude on job performance: the case of Kuwait’s banking sector
Despite the vast amount of research that has been conducted on transformational leadership in a Western context, little is known about this topic in Middle Eastern settings. This lack is significant when one considers the vast disparity between the economies of developing countries (i.e. Kuwait) and the developed nations which have managed to transform the performance of their countries. In exploring the extant literature on transformational leadership and performance, comprehensive broad and narrow systematic reviews were conducted. These involved a review of established review papers (28 from the general literature) and specific empirical studies conducted in the Gulf States (19 studies in total). From these reviews, a number of gaps were identified. Firstly, the literature is found to revolve primarily around self-reporting leaders’ styles and there is a lack of research that explores the dyadic relationship using self- and peer-reporting. Secondly, although the broad literature review supports the influence of transformational leadership on employees’ performance, there was a gap in the research that examines job performance in the Gulf region in relation to leadership style. Hence, this quantitative research aims to understand the impact of transformational leadership, and its four sub-dimensions – idealised influence (II), inspirational motivation (IM), individualised consideration (IC) and intellectual stimulation (IS) – on employees’ job performance. This study set out to answer the following questions within the context of Kuwait: i) to what extent does overall subordinates’ reporting their leaders’ transformational leadership (TL) style affect the followers’ job performance? ii) What is the impact of each of the four sub-dimensions of TL on followers’ job performance? Finally, iii) To what extent do the four sub-dimensions of TL affect employee work attitude (EWA) of subordinates such as job satisfaction (JS), affective commitment (AC) and turnover intention (TO)?

The research questions are explored using a survey instrument based on established scales. The survey was distributed to 850 managers and their direct subordinates, resulting in a total of 420 participants (210 leaders and 210 followers). The research design entailed the leaders providing answers that indicated the presence of their TL and the performance of their direct reports, whilst follower responses related not only to the leader’s TL but also their EWA, comprising JS, AC and TO. The data were analysed using a range of inferential statistical tests including structural equation modelling (SEM). Results of the SEM analysis showed that, contrary to the findings in the literature in a Western setting, the subordinates' job performance in a Gulf State context is not impacted by EWA or by the composite measure of TL. However, an interesting contribution arises when TL is "unpacked" to explore the impact of its four sub-dimensions (II, IM, IC and IS), in which cultural differences were found. That is, II, IM and IC are positively related to job performance, whereas IS negatively influences JP. Moreover, the research reveals that the subordinates’ model fit of TL (employees reporting their leaders’ TL style) and JP are stronger than the model fit of leaders’ self-reported TL style. In addition to this, it was found that leaders tended to rate themselves higher than their subordinates did in terms of TL. Potential explanations of the findings are discussed in relation to the extant literature. From the study, it was concluded that the factors that influence workers in developed countries apply with some disparity in the developing nations such as those in the Middle East context (i.e. Kuwait). Finally, the study’s contributions, implications and directions for future research are discussed.
University of Southampton
Alnughaimish, Mohammed Ebraheem
f9b28cf9-6f39-4563-a9dd-aaf9dbf07662
Alnughaimish, Mohammed Ebraheem
f9b28cf9-6f39-4563-a9dd-aaf9dbf07662
Higgs, Malcolm
bd61667f-4b7c-4caf-9d79-aee907c03ae3

Alnughaimish, Mohammed Ebraheem (2018) The impact of transformational leadership and work attitude on job performance: the case of Kuwait’s banking sector. University of Southampton, Doctoral Thesis, 208pp.

Record type: Thesis (Doctoral)

Abstract

Despite the vast amount of research that has been conducted on transformational leadership in a Western context, little is known about this topic in Middle Eastern settings. This lack is significant when one considers the vast disparity between the economies of developing countries (i.e. Kuwait) and the developed nations which have managed to transform the performance of their countries. In exploring the extant literature on transformational leadership and performance, comprehensive broad and narrow systematic reviews were conducted. These involved a review of established review papers (28 from the general literature) and specific empirical studies conducted in the Gulf States (19 studies in total). From these reviews, a number of gaps were identified. Firstly, the literature is found to revolve primarily around self-reporting leaders’ styles and there is a lack of research that explores the dyadic relationship using self- and peer-reporting. Secondly, although the broad literature review supports the influence of transformational leadership on employees’ performance, there was a gap in the research that examines job performance in the Gulf region in relation to leadership style. Hence, this quantitative research aims to understand the impact of transformational leadership, and its four sub-dimensions – idealised influence (II), inspirational motivation (IM), individualised consideration (IC) and intellectual stimulation (IS) – on employees’ job performance. This study set out to answer the following questions within the context of Kuwait: i) to what extent does overall subordinates’ reporting their leaders’ transformational leadership (TL) style affect the followers’ job performance? ii) What is the impact of each of the four sub-dimensions of TL on followers’ job performance? Finally, iii) To what extent do the four sub-dimensions of TL affect employee work attitude (EWA) of subordinates such as job satisfaction (JS), affective commitment (AC) and turnover intention (TO)?

The research questions are explored using a survey instrument based on established scales. The survey was distributed to 850 managers and their direct subordinates, resulting in a total of 420 participants (210 leaders and 210 followers). The research design entailed the leaders providing answers that indicated the presence of their TL and the performance of their direct reports, whilst follower responses related not only to the leader’s TL but also their EWA, comprising JS, AC and TO. The data were analysed using a range of inferential statistical tests including structural equation modelling (SEM). Results of the SEM analysis showed that, contrary to the findings in the literature in a Western setting, the subordinates' job performance in a Gulf State context is not impacted by EWA or by the composite measure of TL. However, an interesting contribution arises when TL is "unpacked" to explore the impact of its four sub-dimensions (II, IM, IC and IS), in which cultural differences were found. That is, II, IM and IC are positively related to job performance, whereas IS negatively influences JP. Moreover, the research reveals that the subordinates’ model fit of TL (employees reporting their leaders’ TL style) and JP are stronger than the model fit of leaders’ self-reported TL style. In addition to this, it was found that leaders tended to rate themselves higher than their subordinates did in terms of TL. Potential explanations of the findings are discussed in relation to the extant literature. From the study, it was concluded that the factors that influence workers in developed countries apply with some disparity in the developing nations such as those in the Middle East context (i.e. Kuwait). Finally, the study’s contributions, implications and directions for future research are discussed.

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Restricted to Repository staff only until 22 October 2021.
Available under License University of Southampton Thesis Licence.

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Published date: October 2018

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 425873
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/425873
PURE UUID: 87fc4f3e-b189-4087-ba80-e539de82b4ac

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Date deposited: 05 Nov 2018 17:30
Last modified: 13 Mar 2019 17:56

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