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Human resource management dissertation introduction example

Chapter 1: Introduction

In this thesis, the influence of different leadership styles, on the commitment of employees will be researched. According to the literature, commercial performances of companies depend on the commitment of employees. (Bovenlander en Timmer, 2007). However there are different interpretations of commitment. According to Sheldon (1971, p.143) commitment appears when “the identity of the person (is linked to organization.” Hall et al., (1970 p. 176) commitment appears when “the goals of the organization and those of the individual become increasingly integrated or congruent” In general one can argue that when commitment of the employees towards the company is high, this will have a positive influence on the organization. In fact, managers or leaders can have an influence on the commitment and motivation among their employees (Shin and Zhou, 2003).

Managers have a great influence on their staff. They can have an influence on the commitment of employees to achieve the business objectives. Earlier research points out that HRM investments provide a good job experience and thus commitment of the employees (Steijn, 2003). Not only HRM managers, but also other managers must ensure the commitment of the employees.

Avolio et al. (2004) argued that leaders can have a positive influence on organizational issues. They also argued that this study is not completed yet. “Future research also needs to collect ratings of leadership, empowerment, and outcomes from multiple sources over time to adequately test the mediating effects of psychological empowerment on the relationship between transformational leadership and organizational commitment.” (Avolio et al., 2004 p. 964)

A lot of research has been done about commitment and leadership, but which way of leadership is the best way to create commitment among employees? And what are the effects of these different styles?

This reason makes this field a very interesting field of research. This literature review focalizes on different leadership styles and their influence on commitment. This will be examined in this paper, by means of a literature review.

1.1 Problem statement

How does leadership influence the commitment of employees?

1.2 Research Questions

An answer on the problem statement will be given by the following sub questions:

  • What are the different leaderships styles and what are the characteristics of these styles?
  • What is commitment and how can commitment be measured?
  • How can leaders improve the commitment of their employees?

1.3 Methodology

This literature review will be a exploratory research. This is done on a descriptive basis. The typical approach for this thesis will be to rely on available literature: existing theses and studies from well-known scientists. (Sekaran and Bougie, 2009)

For this research it is necessary to investigate the following variables: commitment and the different leadership styles and his characteristics.

The results of this research will be the basis for further literature research. Further literature research will consist about the link between the variables commitment and leadership.

1.4 Structure

To give an answer to the main question of this thesis, how does leadership influence the commitment of employees, it is necessary to find an answer on the two sub questions. To give an answer on the sub questions, it is necessary to investigate the variables leadership and commitment.

Regarding commitment it is important to know all the factors that may have an influence on the organizational commitment of employees.

Leadership will be examined using two different styles. Namely transactional and transformational leadership. Also LMX-leadership will be explained because of the fact that it is important for the results later on in the paper.
After that it is possible to connect leadership with commitment. This will be the last chapter of the this thesis and will give an answer on the main question.