The Impact of participative leadership on employee's motivation, job satisfaction and innovation

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The British University in Dubai (BUiD)
In today's complex and changing environment leadership is a highly valued commodity. Since the effectiveness of a leader is a major determinant of success or failure of an organization, the concept of leadership has gained a lot of attention from managers to researchers worldwide. A review of leadership literature reveals there are many different definitions and styles of leadership. The main reason for the wide variety of leadership definition and styles is the changing nature of leadership. It is important to realize that, leadership styles which were considered effective in certain time or situation can lose their effectiveness once social value, time or cultures changes. This study argues that as our societies move toward more democratic political system our organizations are moving toward employee involvement and participation. Consequently, vertical leadership styles (leader makes the final decision) such as transactional and transformational leadership which are the current dominant leadership category may lose their effectiveness over time and be replaced by horizontal leadership styles (the decision is made collectively) such as participative leadership. The main aim of this study is to identify existing problems with transformational leadership and try to address these problems by using participative leadership. For this purpose a comparative research method is used, three variables (motivation, job satisfaction and innovation) are introduced and impact of each leadership style on the regarded variables is analyzed through reviewing the available literature and using a cased based comparative research method. Moreover, this study intends to provide a set of guidelines for appropriate use of participative leadership. For this purpose an action research based study is conducted on a small group of employees and after reviewing available literature about participative leadership implementation, a set of guidelines for proper implementation of participative leadership is presented. Afterwards these guidelines were applied and their effect was analyzed through the use of action research methodology. Through the use of findings gathered from of both comparative and action research study, the most suitable leadership style for motivation, job satisfaction and innovation is identified, and a set of guidelines for proper implementation of participative leadership is presented. Finally, the conclusion of this research work is presented together with some recommendations and suggestions for future research.
employee's motivation, job satisfaction, innovation, leadership, transformational leadership