Leadership Competencies On Employee Engagement in South African SMME’s

Monarch is happy to announce the recently authorised research plan by PhD in Business Research and Leadership Candidate Ms. Kerstin Jatho addressing leadership competencies and employee engagement in South African small, medium and micro enterprises. 

The Research

Employee engagement is critical in driving organisational success. Leadership styles, behaviours, and competencies are vital in shaping employee engagement levels. Organisations need engaged employees to achieve business growth, market share, and competitive advantage (Kular, Gatenby, Rees, Soane, & Truss, 2008). In South Africa, small, medium, and micro enterprises drive economic development, contributing 39% to the country’s Gross Domestic Product and employing approximately 60% of the labour force (Naicker & Peters, 2013; Reddy, 2022). South Africa’s low employee engagement levels hinder effective decision-making, talent retention, productivity, and business expansion, affecting the performance and sustainability of small, medium, and micro enterprises (Zacharakis, Neck, Hygrave, & Cox, 2002; Harter, et al., 2020; Gallup, 2023).

The contemplated research aims to develop a conceptual framework that explores the impact of leadership competencies on employee engagement in South African small, medium, and micro enterprises. The research methodology involves semi- structured interviews to collect and analyse data. The findings of this research will contribute to knowledge, theory, and practice by providing insights into the relationship between leadership competencies, such as: followership, power dynamics and organisational justice, and employee engagement within South African small, medium, and micro enterprises.

It is anticipated that the resulting conceptual framework may help guide leaders and organisations to develop effective strategies to enhance employee engagement and drive organisational performance. The research has implications for managing and developing employees in small, medium, and micro enterprises, and broader considerations for improving employee engagement in South Africa.

The Researcher

Ms. Kerstin Jatho is a Dual PhD in Business Research and Doctor of Leadership Combined Program Candidate. She holds a Master of Science with Distinction in Applied Positive Psychology from the University of East London and well as a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of South Africa. She also holds a Certificate in JSE Stockbroking from WITS, a Certificate of JSE Compliance Officer from the Johannesburg Stock Exchange and a Certificate in Criminal Justice and Forensic Auditing from Rand Afrikaans University. She also holds a Certificate in Senior Management Development from the University of Stellenbosch Business School. She holds several certificates in Life Coaching. She is a member of the International Coach Federation and the Institute of Applied Positive Psychology. Professionally, she is the Founder and Managing Director of 4SEEDS Consulting in Johannesburg, South Africa.