Original Research

The influence of servant leadership on psychological empowerment and organisational citizenship on a sample of teachers

Adrian G. van der Hoven, Bright Mahembe, Desiree Hamman-Fisher
SA Journal of Human Resource Management | Vol 19 | a1395 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajhrm.v19i0.1395 | © 2021 Adrian G. van der Hoven, Bright Mahembe, Desiree Hamman-Fisher | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 09 May 2020 | Published: 26 March 2021

About the author(s)

Adrian G. van der Hoven, Department of Industrial Psychology, Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences, University of the Western Cape, Cape Town, South Africa
Bright Mahembe, Department of Industrial Psychology, Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences, University of the Western Cape, Cape Town, South Africa
Desiree Hamman-Fisher, Department of Industrial Psychology, Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences, University of the Western Cape, Cape Town, South Africa


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Abstract

Orientation: The exhibition of organisation citizenship behaviour (OCB) by teachers is of great benefit for human capital development. Teachers’ perceptions of school principals as servant leaders play a critical role in their psychological empowerment and exhibition of OCBs.

Research purpose: The goal of the study was to analyse the relationship between servant leadership, psychological empowerment and OCB of teachers in the South African school system.

Motivation for the study: Teachers are usually under pressure to attend to the academic needs of the learners, which may be required either during normal working hours or after hours. This has necessitated the need to investigate the role played by a school principal’s servant leadership style in influencing the exhibition of OCBs.

Research approach/design and method: A non-probability sample of 203 teachers drawn from selected schools in the Western Cape Province of South Africa was utilised. Item and dimensional analysis as well as structural equation modelling were performed on the data.

Main findings: The constructs of servant leadership, psychological empowerment and OCB displayed high levels of internal consistency. Generally, a reasonable model fit was found for the structural and measurement models of the latent variables through confirmatory factor analysis and structural equation modelling. Positive relationships were found between servant leadership, psychological empowerment and OCB.

Practical/managerial implications: A principal’s servant leadership approach is likely to promote teacher empowerment and development as it enables the principal to develop teachers to their fullest potential through mentoring and coaching. The teachers are likely to respond with OCB, which benefits the learners and society at large.

Contribution/value-add: Schools face the challenge of motivating teachers. One of the ways of achieving this objective is by encouraging servant leadership amongst principals. Servant leadership promotes positive outcomes and extra-role behaviours.


Keywords

servant leadership; psychological empowerment; organisational citizenship behaviour; extra-role behaviour; teachers

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