Leadership in managing social workers of the Department of Social Development in Sedibeng
Literature on leadership within the public sector, particularly in social work is still developing although social work as a profession originated in the 19th century. The purpose of this study was to investigate leadership styles prevalent in the Department of Social Development in Sedibeng and the relationship between the leadership styles to turnover intentions and job satisfaction of employees. Quantitative research was undertaken for this study, A stratified random sample of (N=125) social work employees registered with the Council for Social Service Professions(SACSSP) and employed full time by the Department of Social Development was selected for this research. 115 completed questionnaires were received and analysed by the North-West University Statistics Department. The questionnaires measured leadership styles of managers as perceived by social workers, the job satisfaction and turnover intentions of the social workers were also measured. Findings indicate that social workers perceived transformational leadership style as the dominant leadership style in the Department of Social Development in Sedibeng. Findings also show that respondents perceived transformational leadership and contingent rewards as the most effective leadership behaviours of a leader. Despite there being some prevalence of transformational leadership, employees indicated that they are dissatisfied with salary and opportunity for promotion as well as the quality of supervision they receive. In addition, a moderate number of respondents indicated that they have turnover intentions. It is recommended that supervisors should implement the SAPSSP Supervision Framework and conduct quality supervision to promote job satisfaction. Initiatives towards recognising and acknowledging the efforts of subordinates are also recommended. A call is made for more research to be conducted regarding social work management and leadership and their impact on social worker job attitudes in the South African context.
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