Development and validation of a spiritual leadership questionnaire in a South African context
In an altering world of work where change is inevitable, and with the vast growth of a technological era unknown to mankind and which leaves the human factor behind, there is an outcry for leaders leading by example. Leaders today have a responsibility towards their followers by leading with their hearts, souls and minds, whilst intrinsically motivating their followers. Spiritual leaders are individuals who live by their values, ethics and attitudes, who intrinsically motivate themselves as well as their followers, whilst instilling a sense of belonging and membership in the organisation. When a leader demonstrates these qualities, it increases the psychological wellbeing, productivity and morale of the employee, adding towards the triple bottom-line of people, planet and profit, whilst at the same time reducing absenteeism. The objective of this study was to develop and validate a spiritual leadership questionnaire in the South African context. A quantitative, random probability sampling survey design was utilised in construction organisations in the Gauteng and Northern Cape Provinces, reaching a sample size of 221 participants. By making use and adapting the Spiritual Leadership Theory Questionnaire, the Spirituality Scale, the Religious Involvement Questionnaire and the Meaning in Life Questionnaire, a biographical questionnaire was used to develop the Spiritual Leadership Questionnaire on a 4-point Likert scale. Participation was completely voluntary. The Confirmatory Factor Analysis was used to verify whether the constructs measured the latent variable of spiritual leadership, while Structural Equation Modelling with the application on the Mplus program was used to confirm the relationships between the constructs, and to determine the validity and reliability of the latent variables. Acceptable item reliability was found in a three-factor model, namely spirituality, vision/hope/faith, and altruism. The results indicated practical and statistically significant relationships between the latent variable spiritual leadership and the constructs spirituality, vision/hope/faith and altruism. Recommendations followed, as well as indications for future research.