Investigating positive leadership, psychological empowerment, work engagement and satisfaction with life in a chemical industry
The world of work has changed dramatically in the last decade and constant change has become the new normality. Employees are affected by possible re-organisation, retrenchments and downsizing which affects their behaviours and attitudes at work. Leaders have the responsibility of leading their followers through these difficult times to the best of their ability. A positive leader is seen as someone who recognises and focuses on the strengths and accomplishments of his or her employees. When a leader is positive and has a positive leadership approach, it may influence their followers’ feelings of psychological empowerment, work engagement and satisfaction with life. The objective of this study was to investigate the relationship between positive leadership, psychological empowerment, work engagement and satisfaction with life of employees in a chemical industry. A cross-sectional survey design was used with a convenience sample (n = 322). The measuring instruments used were the Positive Leadership Measure, the Measuring Empowerment Questionnaire, the Work Engagement Scale and the Satisfaction with Life Scale. Confirmatory factor analysis was used to test whether the measures of the constructs were consistent with the understanding of the nature of the constructs and to test whether the data fitted the hypothesised measurement model. Structural Equation Modelling (SEM) was used to examine the structural relationships between the constructs. The results show that there are statistically significant relationships between positive leadership, psychological empowerment, work engagement and satisfaction with life. Positive leadership has an indirect effect on work engagement and satisfaction with life via psychological empowerment. The implication of the results is that the work related aspects of positive leadership, psychological empowerment and work engagement has a positive effect on the non-work related aspect of satisfaction with life. Practical implications and directions for future research are offered.