LEADERSHIP A DISTINCTIVE STUDY ON PROJECT SUCCESS: A CASE OF MINISTRY OF ROADS AND HIGHWASYS (MRH) IN GHANA
The study examined the role of leadership in project performance in the Ministry of Roads and Highways (MRH) in Ghana. Specifically, the study determined the extent of application of the Path-goal leadership style to ensure project success in the ministry. Furthermore, the study examined the influence of leadership style on project success in MRH so as to establish the appropriate leadership style (directive, supportive, participative, and achievement-oriented) suitable for ministry in the execution of road projects. A quantitative methodology was used to achieve the purpose of the study. A structured questionnaire was used to conveniently gather data from employees of the Ministry of Roads and Highways in Accra. Overall, 86 employees took part in the study. Descriptive and inferential statistical tools were used in the data analysis. The study found that the path-goal leadership styles usually applied in the ministry were participative, directive, and supportive leadership styles but not achievement-oriented leadership style. All four path-goal leadership attributes (directive, supportive, participative, and achievement-oriented) had significant positive correlations with project success, but only the supportive and participative leadership styles had significant positive influence on project success. The study therefore revealed supportive and participative leadership styles as the appropriate leadership styles that should be adopted by the Ministry of Roads and Highways in the planning and execution of road construction projects. It was recommended for the adoption and application of the path-goal leadership theory in the Ministry of Roads and Highways to ensure success of road projects in Ghana.
Table of Contents
Table of Contents iii
List of Tables iv
1.0: Introduction 1
1.2 Objectives of the Study 4
1.3 Rationale of the Study 4
2.0: Literature Review 5
2.1 Introduction 5
2.2 Concept of a Project 5
2.3 Project Cycle Management 6
2.3.1 Project Life Cycle 7
2.4 Project Success/Failure Factors 11
2.5 Concept of Leadership 14
2.6 Theories of Leadership 15
2.6.1 Trait Theory 15
2.6.2 Behavioural Theory 17
2.6.3 Contingency Theory 19
2.7 Link of Leadership Style and Project Success 26
3.0: Methodology 28
3.1 Introduction 28
3.2 Research paradigm 28
3.3 Research Design 30
3.4 Population and Sampling 31
3.5 Sources of data 32
3.7 Data Collection technique 33
3.8 Data Analysis 33
4.0: Findings and Discussion 34
4.1 Introduction 34
4.2 Demographic Profile of Respondents 34
4.3 Extent of Application of Path-goal Leadership style 37
4.4 Influence of Leadership style on Project Success 40
5: Conclusion and Recommendation 44
5.1 Conclusion 44
5.3 Recommendations 45
5.4 Limitations of the Study 46
Appendix: Questionnaire 52
List of Tables
Table 1: Relationship between leadership styles and project success 27
Table 2: Demographic Profile of participants 35
Table 3: Extent of Application of the Path-goal leadership styles 37
Table 4: Correlation analysis 40
Table 5: Regression analysis 41
Researchers over the years have developed several critical success factor frameworks to access projects, but none of the frameworks to date include leadership competencies of the project manager as a critical success factor, nor are they used as a tool to help project managers achieve success.
In Ghana, the Ministry of Roads and Highways (MRH) is the Government of Ghana ministry responsible for the construction and maintenance of roads. To achieve its mandate, the ministry undertakes various road construction projects. To ensure success in the implementation of road projects, there is need for strong leadership. In absence of leadership, the project managers despite having excellent skills may fail at any stage of the project (Meredith & Mantel, 2010).
Project failure rates in Ghana are high and the costs involved are excessively high. Even though the failure rate has not been statistically determined, reports in the national newspapers indicate that it is likely to be 1 in every 3 projects in Ghana (Daily Graphic, 2006). Project failures have been attributed to many reasons such as socio-political, economic, technological, macro and micro-global reasons without any empirical evidence (AfDB, 2006). Many road construction projects in Ghana extend beyond their completion dates due to lack of funds for the projects and possible lack of leadership commitment to complete the projects. The government, without the necessary funds, usually initiate road projects just to be seen as fulfilling a political promise to the people. Examples of such road projects include the Bole-Bamboi road project, and the Eastern Corridor road project that have been in the manifestoes of the major political parties in Ghana (the National Democratic Congress, and the New Patriotic Party) over a decade before the completion of the Bole-Bamboi road project while the Eastern Corridor road project is still pending. Road projects initiated by one political party is usually abandoned by another political party upon winning power. This leads to not only project failures by also over inflated cost of projects. Anderson (1992) established a positive correlation between project managersï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ managerial attributes and project success. The implication is that leadership plays a significant role in ensuring project success. This call for the right kind of leadership in the Road and Highway Ministry to ensure that road projects meet their timelines to eliminate cost overran of road projects in Ghana. Interestingly, critical success factors of project included in project management literature largely does not indicate the project managerï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s leadership style as a success factor (Turner & Muller, 2005). This study therefore examines the influence of leadership style on project success in Ghana using the Ministry of Roads and Highways (MRH) as the case study.
As asserted by Chemers (2000), leadership is the executive of organizational intelligence in which leadership effectiveness is linked to organizational performance. As elucidated by Shafie, Baghersalimi and Barghi (2013), the importance of leadership in organizations and especially on human beings who are apparently the biggest asset of any firm cannot be underestimated. This is because, the main drivers of organizations are usually employees, who give life to the organizations and ensure the attainment of the organisational goals (Shafie et al., 2013). Kandelousi, Ooi and Abdollahi (2011) mentioned that leadership in project management can be viewed in several forms, for instance, helping teams in dealing with hurdles, exhibiting commitment to the work and encouraging the subordinates. Moreover, top management support results in availability of in time financial, human and other physical resources required for the successful execution of projects and more importantly, it also refers to the delegation of necessary power to project leaders and project teams. Therefore, top management support is important recommendation for achieving the project success (Belassi & Tukel, 1996; Chae & Poole, 2005; Lin, 2010). For the reasons, the projects without support of top management rarely survive (Meredith and Mantel, 2010).
Interestingly however, the scope of project leadership is wide as compared to traditional project management (Sumner, Bock, & Giamartino, 2006). According to Northouse (2014), the path-goal theory can best be thought of as a process in which leaders select specific behaviours that are best suited to the employees' needs and the working environment so that they may best guide the employees through their path in the obtainment of their daily work activities (goals). The theory suggests that there are two contingency variables namely the environment and the follower characteristics (Lussier & Achua, 2013). According to Schermerhorn, Hunt and Osborn (2005), these variables moderate the leader behaviour-outcome relationship. The theory has four key elements as follows, leader behaviour, environmental contingency factors, and subordinate contingency factors and lastly, the outcomes. Path-goal leadership behaviour covers the four styles of leadership namely directive, supportive, participative, and achievement oriented. The current study will examine the extent of application of the path-goal leadership style to ensure project success in Ministry of Roads and Highways (MRH) in Ghana.
1.2 Objectives of the Study
The following specific objectives have been outlined to achieve in this study
i. To assess the extent of application of the Path-goal leadership style to ensure project success in Ministry of Roads and Highways in Ghana
ii. To evaluate the influence of leadership style on project success in Ghana Ministry of Roads And Highways.
iii. To establish the appropriate Leadership Style (directive, supportive, participative, and achievement-oriented) suitable for Ghana Ministry of Roads and Highways
1.3 Rationale of the Study
The findings of this study may, to some extent, will reveal the extent to which management of MRH in Ghana apply the path-goal leadership style during project implementation. The finding will also reveal which aspect of the Path-goal leadership style have maximum positive influence on project success so that appropriate recommendation could be made as to the choice of the right king of leadership. The finding of the study would be beneficial to management of MRH sine it will ensure that the right kind of leadership is applied during the construction of road projects in order to avoid project failures and delays.
2.0: Literature Review
This chapter reviews both theoretical and empirical literature. The theoretical literature looks the concept of project and project cycle management. It also provide literature on elements of project management and the various critical factors responsible for project success. The concept of leadership and the various theories attributable to leadership have been examined the empirical literature reviews findings of similar studies linking leadership to project success.
2.2 Concept of a Project
Turner (1999) defines a project as: An endeavour in which human, material and financial resources are organized in a novel way to undertake a unique scope of work comprising of given specification within constraints of cost and time, so as to achieve beneficial change defined by quantitative and qualitative objectives (Turner, 1999). Turner (1999) further defined a project ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½as an undertaking to deliver beneficial changeï¿½ï¿½ï¿½, and thus a project has three essential characteristics or features: The three essential features are:
ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ It is unique: no project before or after will be exactly the same.
ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ It is undertaken using novel processes: no project before or after will use exactly the same approach.
ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ It is transient: it has a beginning and an end (Turner, 1999, p19).
Barnes (1989) also defines project as: ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½something which has a beginning and an endï¿½ï¿½ï¿½. ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½It is a human endeavor which creates change, is limited in time and scope, has mixed goals and objectives, involves a variety of resources and is uniqueï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ (Andersen et. al., 1987). A complex effort to achieve a specific objective within a schedule and budget target, which typically cuts across organizational lines, is unique and is usually not repetitive within the organization (Cleland & King, 1983). A one- time unique endeavor to do something that has not been done that way beforeï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ (Smith, 1985).
The Project Management Institutesï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ (PMIï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s) and the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) identify a sequence of steps to be completed in a project. In the PMIï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s approach, 5 components of a project (4 stages plus control) are distinguished in the development of a project: 1) Project initiating or commencement phase;2) Project lanning or design phase; 3) Project executing or production phase; 4) Project monitoring and controlling systems; and 5 Project closing or completing phase (PMI, PMBOK, 2008)
Not all the projects will visit every stage as projects can be terminated before they reach completion. Some projects do not follow a structured planning and/or monitoring stages
PMI, PMBOK, 2008).
2.3 Project Cycle Management
Project Cycle Management (PCM) was introduced by the European Commission in the early 1990ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s to improve the quality of project design and management and thereby to improve aid effectiveness.( ITAD,1999) The way in which projects are planned and carried out follows a sequence beginning with an agreed strategy that leads to an idea for a specific action an oriented towards achieving a set of objectives which is then is formulated, implemented and evaluated with a view to improve the strategy for further action. Project Cycle Management is an approach to managing projects. It determines particular phases of the project and outlines specific actions and approaches to be taken within these phases. The PCM approach provides for planning and review processes throughout a cycle and allows for multiple project cycles to be supported.
2.3.1 Project Life Cycle
The idea of a life cycle suggests that a project has a life. This implies a sequence of phases, including birth, growth, maturity, aging and death. The project life cycle model describes the different phases that project normally passes through as it progresses to a conclusion. The model is based on the idea that, although all projects are different, they all progress through similar phases. Each phase completes a stage of the project (Martin, 2006). The project cycle also provides a structure to ensure that stakeholders are consulted and relevant information is available throughout the life of the project, so that decisions can be made at key stages in the life of a project.
According to Westland (2006), the project life cycle consists of four phases as shown in Figure.1.
Figure 1: Project Life Cycle
A. Project Initiation
The project initiation phase is the conceptualization of the project. Accordingly, the purpose of the project initiation phase is to specify what the project should accomplish. The caution in this purpose lies the customerï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s needs if inadequately articulated and poorly formulated goals and objectives will stand out as a significant source of concern. This starting point is critical because it is essential for those who will deliver the product/process and for those who will use that product/process and for those who have a stake in the project to reach agreement on its initiation (Project Management Methodology, 2004).
The initiation phase is the first phase of a project management life cycle and the most crucial phase. During this phase a business problem or opportunity is identified and a business case providing various solution options is defined. Next, a feasibility study is conducted to investigate whether each option addresses the business problem and a final recommended solution is then put forward. Once the recommended solution is approved, a project is initiated to deliver the approved solution (Project Management Methodology, 2004).
Project charter is completed outlining the objectives, scope and structure of the new project and a project manager is appointed. The project manager begins recruiting a project team and establishes a project office environment. Approval is then sought to move into the detailed planning phase.
There are six key steps to properly initiate a new project and are as follows: 1) Develop a business case, 2) Undertake a feasibility study, 3) Establish the project charter, 4)Appoint the project team, 5) Set up a project office, and 6)Perform a phase review
B. Project Planning
By now, the project costs and benefits have been documented, the objectives and scope have been defined, the project team has been appointed and a formal project office environment established. It is now time to undertake detailed planning to ensure that the activities performed during the execution phase of the project are properly sequenced, resourced, executed and controlled(Project Management Methodology, 2004). The activities undertaken are: 1) Create a project plan, 2) Create a resource plan, 3)Create a financial plan, 4) Create a quality plan, 5) Create a risk plan, 6) Create an acceptance plan, 7) Create a communications plan, 8) Create a procurement plan, 9)Contract the suppliers and 10) Perform a phase review.
C. Project Execution
According to the Project Management Methodology (2004), the execution phase is typically the longest phase of the project in terms of duration. It is the phase within which the deliverables are physically constructed and presented to the customer for acceptance. To ensure that the customerï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s requirements are met, the project manager monitors and controls the activities, resources and expenditure required to build each deliverable. A number of management processes are undertaken to ensure that the project proceeds as planned.
This phase involves implementing the plans created during the project planning phase. While each plan is being executed, a series of management processes are undertaken to monitor and control the execution. This includes identifying change, risks and issues, assuring quality and measuring each deliverables including building the deliverables, and monitoring and control
D. Project Closure
Following the acceptance of all project deliverables, the project will have met its objectives and be ready for closure. Project closure is the last phase in the project life cycle and must be conducted formally so that the business benefits delivered by the project are fully realized by the stakeholders. Project closure involves releasing the final deliverables to the stakeholders, handing over project documentation, completion of supplier contracts and releasing project resources. The last remaining step is to undertake a post-implementation review to quantify the level of project success and put recommendations for future projects.
ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ Perform project closure
ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ Review project completion
(Project Management Methodology, 2004).
2.4 Project Success/Failure Factors
The project management literature reviewed shows that the concept of project success has been and continues to be a major concern in this field. The two different aspects of concern are the following: (a) How success is measured (success criteria), and (b) what are the factors that contribute to project success (Crawford, 2002).
Project success factors (PSFs) are factors or characteristics that, when present, improve the likelihood that projects will be implemented successfully (Kerzner, 1997, 2003; Pinto &Slevin, 1987). Kerzner (1987) also defined PSFs as "elements required to create an environment where projects are managed consistently with excellence".
Greer (1999) states that "Planning is everything and ongoing", and expands this by saying "planning and re-planning must be a way of life for project managers", and due to the dynamic nature of many projects, the plan must be regularly revised. The planning and control of project scope is important to avoid higher costs and late delivery (Butterick, 2000). Well defined requirements are an important input into the scope management process. The management of change in a project is a critical success factor, a formal method of recording change requests, assessing the effect of the change on the project and a change approval process are required to be controlled (Thomsett , 2002).
Management of Risk in a project is another element of successful projects. Risk management should begin during project planning and identify risks that can cause problems later in the project. Some risks can never be totally eliminated and they may change during a project, but ongoing well thought out risk assessment and risk mitigation strategies together with risk contingencies in the project budget are required to avoid unpleasant project surprises (Cameron, 2002).
Butterick summarizes the results of a benchmarking study into project success factors across a wide range of industries into ten "lessons learned". One of these lessons is to "use the same, simple and well defined framework with a staged approach in all circumstances". Constantly using the same staged approach minimizes confusion and the need for relearning for people connected with the project. The staged approach allows planning of the next stage in detail while further stages are planned in summary form. Separating each stage is a decision point or gate. The gate allows for quality control checks, prioritization and a point from which to plan forward. Traditionally the gate ends each phase. Some organizations use the gate as an entry point to the next phase which allows phases to overlap (start before the previous phase has finished) without increasing risk (Butterick, 2000).
There is no known empirical study on the causes of failure and/or success of projects in
Ghana. One of the objectives of this study is to identify project success/failure factors. This section looks at what other writers say are the causes of project success and/or failure. Worldwide, projects initiated continue to fail at a significant rate despite growing understanding of determinants of success in PM. Statistics of challenged and failed projects testify that these failures are much more common than we would like to believe (Anbari, 2003). In comparison with widely reported success rates, Ghana is no exception.
Gioia (1996) provides twelve primary reasons why projects fail including
1. Failure to understand project complexity.
2. Lack of access and internal communication.
3. Failure to integrate key elements of the project.
4. Failure to create and implement measurable controls.
5. Failure to control the requirements baseline.
6. Ineffective implementation strategy.
7. Too great reliance on software as a means to manage the project.
8. Differing or inconsistent contractor and customer expectations.
9. Lack of a shared ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½win-winï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ attitude.
10. Insufficient formal education (project manager not trained on process).
11. Lack of leadership, commitment, and sponsorship.
12. Project not viewed as a start-up business (autonomous project).
As noted by Turner and Muller (2005) critical success factors of project included in project management literature largely does not indicate the project managerï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s leadership style as a success factor. Therefore, the following section review literature on the concept of leadership and leadership theories.
2.5 Concept of Leadership
Defining leadership is vital to the bringing out the operational definition for this research because as noted by Stogdill "there are almost as many definitions of leadership as there are persons who have attempted to define the concept" (1974: p. 7). This is because leadership is a complex human activity which is difficult to precisely define or accurately describe. There is also no agreed definition of the concept of leadership (Yukl, 2010).The many abundant and disjointed sub-categories of leadership offer only limited explanations and incomplete analysis of the art and science of leadership. In support of this, Cuban (2004), argue that many definitions of leadership have no clear and unequivocal understanding as to what distinguishes leaders from non-leaders. Leadership can be referred to as a function of management which involves influencing followers to achieve stated organisational objectives. It is about what leaders and followers do together for the collective good of the organization. In accordance with this Bennis and Nanus (1985) attempt a definition, as the ability to get all members of the organization to perform tasks required to achieve the organizationï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s goals and objectives. Owens (2001, p.239) contends that leadership is not something that one does to people, nor is it a manner of behaving toward people: it is working with and through other people to achieve organisational goalsï¿½ï¿½ï¿½. In this sense, leadership is a result of an influence relationship among leaders and followers who intend real changes that reflect their mutual purposes (Rost, 1991). The view of Cuban 2004) as an influence process where people bend the motivations and actions of others to achieve certain goals is not different from the above.
According to Bass (2008, p. 15), ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½The definitions most commonly used tend to concentrate on the leader as a person, on the behaviour of the leader, on the effects of the leader, and on the interaction process between the leader and the led.ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ Northouse (2014: p. 3) indicated, ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½Despite the multitude of ways in which leadership has been conceptualized, the following components can be identified as central to the phenomenon: (a) leadership is a process, (b) leadership involves influence, (c) leadership occurs in a group context, and (d) leadership involves goal attainment.ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ Based upon the components stated above, Northouse (2014, p. 3) definition is as follows: ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½Leadership is a process whereby an individual influences a group of individuals to achieve a common goal.ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ Northouse (2014) centred on process as the key word in his definition of leadership because he did not want traits or characteristics to limit and/or restrict anyone wanting to become a leader. His definition emphasizes that it is a transactional event between the leader and follower(s), thus making leadership available to everyone. Within the context of project management, as adopted by this study, leadership influences the project success through teamwork (Yang et al., 2011).
2.6 Theories of Leadership
According to Robbins (2003), there are three key approaches to leadership theories namely, the trait theory, behavioural theory and contingency theory.
2.6.1 Trait Theory
Trait theories arose from the great-man theory as a way of explaining key personality and character traits of successful leaders. Leaders were seen as different from non-leaders due to the various attributes and identified personality traits (Bass, 2008). The following theorists all explained leadership in terms of the trait theory: Kohs and Irle (1920), Bernard (1926), Bingham (1927), Tead (1929), Page (1935), and Kilbourne (1935).
Until the mid-1940's, leadership research was based largely on the trait theory, which maintained that traits were inherent. Later, however, it was suggested that traits could be acquired through learning and experience (Marriner-Tomey, 2009). According to Marriner-Tomey (2009), the trait theory expanded knowledge about leadership but was not without its flaws. It is not clear which traits are most important, which are needed to acquire leadership, and which are needed to maintain it.
Andriessen and Drenth (1998) point out that the theory of leadership traits was based on the assumption that leaders possess certain personal qualities, such as courage, intelligence, strength of character, vision or charisma, which their followers do not possess. These characteristics were seen to be fixed, largely inborn, and applicable across situations (Hersey, Blanchard & Johnson, 2001).
Trait theories of leadership sought personality, social, physical, or intellectual traits that differentiated leaders from non-leaders (Robbins & De Cenzo, 2010). Cacioppe (1997) states that recent studies have found six traits that differentiate leaders from non-leaders, namely, honesty and integrity, high energy level, ambition and the desire to lead, intelligence, self-confidence and task-relevant knowledge. Stogdill (1948) however, did not buy into the trait theory because he concluded that both the person and situation must be included to explain the emergence of leadership. This study agrees with Sogdill because in the context of project management, project scopes vary and therefore the project situation must be considered by selecting appropriate leadership.
2.6.2 Behavioural Theory
Behavioural approaches to leadership arose from the 1940s to the 1960s (Hersey et al, 2001). As noted by Robbins and De Cenzo (2010), behavioural theories of leadership indicate that specific behaviours distinguish effective leaders from ineffective leaders. Three of the most popular studies are: Ohio State University Studies, and University of Michigan Studies,
1. Ohio State University Studies
The most comprehensive behavioural theories resulted from research conducted at the Ohio State University into independent dimensions of leader behaviour. The Ohio study identified two dimensions,
a) Initiating structure, which is the extent to which leaders are likely to define and structure their role and those of subordinates in the search for goal attainment.
b) Consideration, which is the extent to which leaders are likely to have job relationships characterised by mutual trust, respect for subordinates ideas, and regard for their feelings.
Leaders high in initiating structure and consideration tend to achieve high subordinate performance and satisfaction (Robbins, 2003)
2. University of Michigan Study
According to Robbins and De Cenzo (2010), this study was very similar to the Ohio State and identified behavioural characteristics of leaders that were related to performance effectiveness. The Michigan study also identified two dimensions of leadership behaviour, namely, employee-oriented and production-oriented.
(a) Employee-oriented leaders emphasise interpersonal relations in the needs of their employees and accept individual differences among members (Robbins, 2003). They feel that every employee is important and take an interest in everyone, accepting their individuality and personal needs (Hersey et al., 2001).
(b) Production-oriented leaders emphasise the technical or task aspects of the job and are concerned mainly with accomplishing their group's tasks, and regard group members as a means to that end (Robbins & De Cenzo, 2010).
3. The Managerial Grid
In 1964 Blake and Mouton developed a two-dimensional view of leadership styles known as the managerial grid. The managerial grid was based on the styles of "concern for people" and "concern for production", which essentially represented the Ohio dimensions of consideration and initiating structure and the Michigan dimensions of employee orientation and production orientation. Behavioural studies have had modest success in identifying consistent relationships between leadership behaviour and group performance (Blake & Mouton, 1964).
Both trait and behavioural approaches provided insight into and helped people to understand the dynamics of leadership. Trait approaches consider personal characteristics in a leader that may be important in achieving success in a leadership role. Similarly, behavioural approaches attempt to specify which kinds of leader behaviours are necessary for effective leadership. However, trait and behavioural approaches fail to take into account the interaction between people, tasks and environments (Ivancevich & Matteson, 1999) and therefore are not considered in study. This is because, to ensure success in project, there must interaction between leadership and the team through effective communication.
2.6.3 Contingency Theory
According to Robbins (2003), predicting leadership success is more complex than isolating a few traits or preferable behaviours. The failure to obtain consistent results led to the focus on situational influences.
(1) Fiedler's leadership contingency theory
Fiedler (1967) developed "The Leadership Contingency" theory, which proposed that effective group performance depends upon a proper match between leaders' style of interacting with their subordinates and the degree to which the situation gives control and influence to the leader. Fiedler believed that a key factor in leadership success is the individual's basic leadership style (Marriner-Tomey, 2009). Leadership style is measured by the Least Preferred Co-Worker scale (LPC), which assesses the degree of positive or negative feelings people hold towards others whom they least prefer to work for (Ivancevich & Matteson, 1999). Once an individual's leadership style has been assessed by the LPC, it is necessary to match the leader and the situation. Fiedler (1967) identified three factors which determine how favourable the leadership environment is, or the degree of situational favourableness:
a) leader-member relations, which refers to the degree of confidence, trust and respect, the followers have in their leader
b) task structure, which refers to the degree to which the job assignments are procedurised
c) position power, which refers to the degree of influence the leader has over power variables, such as hiring, firing.
With knowledge of an individual's LPC and an assessment of the three contingency variables, the Fiedler model proposed matching them up to achieve maximum leadership effectiveness. Based on his research, Fiedler (1967) concluded that task-oriented leaders tended to perform better in situations that were very favourable to them rather than in situations that were very unfavourable.
According to Ivancevich and Matteson (1999), Fiedler did not believe that leaders could be trained successfully to change their preferred leadership style. He saw changing the favourableness of the situation as a better alternative. Fiedler's model has been criticised for the questionable measurement and low reliability and validity of the LPC, and for not have precisely defined variables. Other researchers have criticised the fact that the variables are not precisely defined. Despite these criticisms, Fiedler's contingency model has made a significant contribution to the study and application of leadership principles, specifically focusing on the situational nature of leadership (Ivancevich & Matteson, 1999).
(2) Hersey and Blanchard's situational theory
Situational theories became popular in the 1950s. Hersey and Blanchard's leadership model gained a strong following among management specialists. This situational leadership theory depicts how leaders should adjust their leadership style to reflect what followers want. Situational leadership is a contingency theory that focuses on the followers. Successful leadership is achieved by selecting the right leadership style. The emphasis on the followers in leadership effectiveness reflects the reality that it is they who accept or reject the leader. Regardless of what leaders do effectiveness depends on the actions of their followers (Robbins & De Cenzo, 2010).
The emphasis of situational leadership theories is on followers and their level of maturity. The leader must judge or intuitively know followers' maturity levels and then use a leadership style that fits the level. Readiness is thus defined as the ability and willingness of followers to take responsibility for directing their own behaviour (Ivancevich & Matteson, 1999). Hersey and Blanchard used the Ohio State studies to further develop four leadership styles:
a) Telling. The leader defines the roles needed to do the job and tells followers what, where, how and when to do the tasks.
b) Selling. The leader provides followers with structured instructions, but is also supportive.
c) Participating. The leader and followers share in decisions of how best to complete a high-quality job.
d) Delegating. The leader provides little, specific, close direction or personal support to followers.
By determining the followers' readiness levels, leaders can choose from among the four leadership styles. By using the readiness indicator with the four-style model, leaders can conceptualise what is best for their followers (Ivancevich & Matteson, 1999).
In response to criticism, Blanchard later revised the original model so that the focus revolved around task behaviour and relationship behaviour. Task behaviour is defined as the extent to which leaders are likely to organise and define the roles of the followers of their group and to explain the activities that need to be done. Relationship behaviour is defined as the extent to which leaders are likely to maintain personal relationships between themselves and their followers, by open communication and by providing support (Hersey et al., 2001).
Hersey and Blanchard were criticised for the limited testing of the model and failing to provide significant evidence of the predictions that could be made with the model and which style is best. Despite the criticism, the model is well accepted in organisational environments and is thought to be practical and useful in training settings (Ivancevich & Matteson, 1999). Research efforts to test and support the theory are very disappointing, due to possible inconsistencies in the model, as well as problems with research methodology with tests on the theory (Robbins, 2003).
(3) House's Path-Goal Theory
In 1971 House developed the path-goal theory, a contingency model of leadership that extracts key elements from the Ohio State leadership research of initiating structure and consideration. The theory focuses on leaders' task of assisting their subordinates in attaining their goals and providing the necessary direction and or support to ensure that their goals are compatible with the overall objective of the group or organisation (House, 1971).
According to the path-goal theory, a leader's behaviour is acceptable to the subordinates to the degree that they perceive it, as an immediate source of satisfaction or as a means of future satisfaction (House, 1971). House called it the path-goal theory because it focuses on how leaders influence their followers' perceptions of work goals, self-development goals, and paths to goal attainment (Ivancevich & Matteson, 1999).
The path-goal theory proposes two types of situational or contingency variables that moderate the leadership behaviour-outcome relationship, namely the environment pressures and demands, and the subordinates' personal characteristics with which they must cope in order to accomplish work goals and drive satisfaction. Environmental factors determine the type of leader behaviour required as a complement if subordinate outcomes are to be maximised, while subordinates' personal characteristics determine the environment and leader-behaviour (Robbins, 2003).
According to Hersey et al (2001), the path-goal theory attempts to predict leadership effectiveness in different situations. Leaders are effective because of their positive impact on followers' motivation, ability to perform and satisfaction. House's approach suggests that the leader's job is to increase the payoffs to workers for achieving work goals. The leader does this by clarifying the path to these goals, by reducing blockages that prevent workers from reaching their goals and by behaving in a way that will increase worker satisfaction while they are achieving those goals. This theory provides insight into some things leaders can do in order to increase employee satisfaction (Robbins & De Cenzo, 2010).
According to the path-goal theory, leaders behaviour will be motivational to the extent that it helps subordinates cope with the environmental uncertainties. Leaders who are able to reduce the uncertainties of the job are considered to be motivators because they increase the subordinates' expectations that their efforts will lead to desirable rewards (Ivancevich & Matteson, 1999).
Contingency models suggest more complex diagnosis of the situation at hand, and more complex leadership interventions. Situational or contingency approaches reflect the belief that there is a relationship between employees' satisfaction and performance, and their environments (Robbins, 2003).
The path-goal theory therefore treats leaders as very flexible people who can adjust their style of leading according to the situation at hand (Northouse, 2014). The theory suggests that there are two contingency variables namely the environment and the follower characteristics (Lussier & Achua, 2013). According to Schermerhorn, Hunt and Osborn (2005), these variables moderate the leader behaviour-outcome relationship. The theory has four key elements as follows, leader behaviour, environmental contingency factors, and subordinate contingency factors and lastly, the outcomes.
Leader behavior covers the four styles of leadership namely directive, supportive, participative, and achievement oriented.
i. In directive leadership, the leader is charged with the responsibility of giving specific guidance to their followers. Followers are required to follow the instructions without questioning (Beerel, 2009).
ii. Under the supportive style, emphasis is on three keys areas as follows; concern for employees by managers, satisfying subordinate needs and creating a friendly working environment (Schermerhorn et al., 2005).
iii. The third style is participative; the main emphasis here is on management consultation with followers before making key organizational decisions. In this case, the leader consults and considers the employee suggestions (Lussier & Achua, 2013).
iv. The fourth style of leadership under the behavioral category is identified as achievement oriented. This style mainly talks about managers setting challenging goals for the subordinates (Thornton, 2013). As the high goals are set, there is expectation that they will lead to high level of employee performance.
Based on this discussion, it becomes evident that the pathï¿½ï¿½ï¿½goal theory looks at how fluid the four identified styles are. This means that not one style may necessarily operate independently but any can be applied depending on the situation that the leader is facing 4(Northouse, 2013). This makes the path-goal theory more application in project management situation considering the diversity of stakeholders in a project such as the road construction usually undertaken by the Ministry of Roads and Highway (MRH) in Ghana. Therefore, this theory was adopted in this study to examine the influence of directive, supportive, participative and achievement-oriented leadership styles on project success in the MRH.
2.7 Link of Leadership Style and Project Success
From the review of project success, it is surprising that the leadership style is not one of the critical success factors, to explain this, Tunrner and Muller (2005) claimed it may be the project managers asked in the studies of ignore the effect of themselves or the impact of the project leader is not measured in these studies. However, it is concluded by various articles that the selection of leadership influences the performance of project (Crawford et al., 2005; Dulewicz & Higgs, 2003).
In Table 1, some research work examining the relationship has been summarized, which obviously suggests that there are some certain relationships between leadership and project success. Especially the third study providing that some of the success factors are related to leaderships.
Table 1: Relationship between leadership styles and project success
Author Leadership style Results Methodology
Yang et al
project manager Online questionnaire
related in the
Source: Juanjuan (2014)
This chapter provides a description of the methodology adopted in this study. The chapter includes the research paradigm adopted, the research design, the target population and sampling technique, sources of data, techniques of data collection, and analysis of data.
3.2 Research paradigm
Weaver and Olsonï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s (2006) define paradigm as patterns of beliefs and practices that shape inquiry within a discipline by providing lenses, frames and processes through which investigation is carried out. This definition of paradigm reveals how research could be affected and guided by a certain paradigm. The research paradigm include quantitative methodology, qualitative methodology and mixed method.
Quantitative methods are founded on the positivistsï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ philosophical orientation which portray reality as something that is simple, quantifiable and objective (Creswell, 2009). Whereas qualitative methodological approach which is founded on interpretivistsï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ philosophical background perceive reality as multiple and subjective (Creswell, 2014). Interpretivism sharply differ from positivism. Proponents of interpretivism base their augment on the school of thought that is symbolic interactionism. Interpretivist theorists, contrarily to positivists, do not believe that there is one reality that is objectifiable and measurable.
The dilemma as to whether or not to adopt either quantitative or qualitative methods alone or combine the two methods has become topic for debate. Methodological pragmatists, such as Tashakkori and Teddlie (1998) and Johnson and Onwuegbuzie (2004), contended that researchers should adopt the two paradigms if this leads to an optimum level of understanding and a more complete analysis. The above researchers also state that the dissimilarities in quantitative and qualitative methods are not always as great as researchers are made to believe, and can be used to effectively augment each other.
Conversely, methodological purists take exceptional view to this and argue that these methods are incommensurable as the two methods are founded on mutually exclusive logical assumptions (for example, positivism vs. interpretivism) with almost no similarity in them (Guba & Lincoln, 1985). Leininger (1994), for example advised against the use of a mixture of quantitative and qualitative research methods since the dissimilarities in the two paradigms, which are very drastically different which will be impossible to reconcile.
In supporting the view of methodological purist, this adopted the quantitative approach. This approach is founded on the philosophical paradigm of positivism that sees reality as objective and quantifiable. It is also based on deductive reasoning, Quantitative methodology was adopted because it will help eliminate the biases of the researcher (Quinn, 1990) regarding leadership and project success. Also, with quantitative methodology, the research findings are subjected to statistical manipulation to produce broadly representative data of the population and forecasts of future events under different conditions (Cant et al., 2005; Zikmund & Babin, 2007). This methodology is appropriate for explanation studies that establish relationship between dependent variable (project success) and independent variable (leadership style) as it is in the case of this study (Saunders et al. 2014).
3.3 Research Design
According to Strydom, Fouche and Delport (2005), a research design is a plan or blue print of the way a researcher intends to undertake the research. This study adopted a cross-sectional survey strategy to achieve the purpose of the study. According to Avoke (2005) citing Blaxter, Hughes and Tight (1996), indicated that survey research involves collection of information from members of a group. Ary, Jacobs and Rezavieh (2002) note that survey study allows the researcher to gather information from a large sample of participants relatively faster and less costly. The survey strategy was chosen because it provides a quantitative or numeric description of attitudes, or opinions of a population by studying a sample of that population (Creswell, 2014).
According to Yin (2003) the best research design used for a study depends on the purpose of the study and the accompanying research questions. According to Eriksson and Wiedersheim-Paul (2001) the purpose of a research can be exploratory, descriptive or explanatory depending on the nature of the problem. The current research is both descriptive and explanatory in nature. Descriptive research aims to describe phenomena and needs accurate observations, and the research design must focus on the validity and reliability of the observations (Terre-Blanche et al., 2006). The current study is descriptive because it sought to describe the extent of application of the Path-goal leadership style to ensure project success in Ministry of Roads and Highways in Ghana. As noted by Saunders et al. (2014), explanatory research seeks to establish relationship that exists between variables. This study is also explanatory because it mainly aimed at determining the influence of leadership style on project success in Ghana Ministry of Roads And Highways.
3.4 Population and Sampling
The study specifically targeted employees Ministry of Roads and Highways in Ghana as well as project contractors working for the ministry to get a more objective and balanced information. Specifically, the participants included the chief directors, financial managers, officials involved in project monitoring and evaluation in the ministry. The selection of the participant was convenience sampling technique where only the target individuals willing to participate in the study were selected.
The size of the sample is a function of change in the population parameters under study and the estimation of the quality that is needed by the researcher (Wegner, 2000). Generally, larger samples result in more precise statistical findings (Terre Blanche et al., 2006). Also, Crimp and Wright (1995) outlined some guidance by suggesting that sample size larger than 30 and below 500 is appropriate for a research study. In this study, 100 questionnaires were send to the field and 86 were completed and returned from data analysis.
3.5 Sources of data
For the purpose of this study, data collection was done by using primary data collection instrument. Primary data is defined as ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½data collected through original research pertaining to the particular research question askedï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ (Yanni & Shishhang, 2005). A survey questionnaire with close-ended type of questions was adopted. The questionnaire was used measure leadership style and project success using ranking scale.
The questionnaire was organised into three sections outlined as follows. The first section (section A) assessed the demographic profile of the respondents which included items such as: gender, age, level of education, role performed by the participant, and tenure of work
Section B determined the extent to leadership of the Ministry of Roads and Highways apply the path-goal type leadership style. A modified version of the questionnaire used by Lumbasi (2015) developed from the path-goal theory of leadership was adopted. The four dimensions of leadership style according to the path-goal theory include: directive, supportive, participative, and achievement-oriented leadership behaviour. Items were measured on a five-point Likert scale (Likert, 1932): 1=Strongly disagree; 2= Disagree; 3 =Neutral; 4= Agree; 5 =Strongly agree.
Section C examined the extent of project success in Ministry of Roads and Highways (MRH) in Ghana. Project success was measured by determining the effectiveness of the Ministry in: Project initiating or commencement; Project planning or design Project executing or production; Project monitoring and controlling; and Project completion. Items were measured on a Five-point Likert type of Scale (Likert, 1932): 1=Strongly disagree; 2= Disagree; 3 =Neutral; 4= Agree; 5 =Strongly agree.
3.7 Data Collection technique
Data collection commenced by sending an introduction letter to the Ministry of Roads and Highways (MRH) to seek their consent. The structured questionnaires were then be distributed to the target employees of the ministry and selected contractors through personal contact. The respondents were allowed ample time to respond questionnaire. The questionnaires were retrieved through personal contact for sorting and analysis. To ensure ethical consideration, the participants were assured of their anonymity and confidentiality of the information provided.
3.8 Data Analysis
In this study, both descriptive and inferential statistics were used. Descriptive statistics such as frequency distribution, mean and standard deviation were used to present findings. The means values represents the average response for all respondent regarding a particular item on the scale while the standard deviation is the spread of the response about the mean. The frequency distribution was used to present the demographic profile of the respondents, while mean and standard deviation were used to present variables measured on the ranking scale (leadership style and project success). Inferential statistical tools such as correlation and regression were used to examine the influence of leadership style on project success.
4.0: Findings and Discussion
This chapter analyses and presents the findings of the study based on the data gathered from the Ministry of Road and Highways. It starts by first present the demographic profile of the participants. The chapter presents the finding on the extent of application of the Path-goal leadership style to ensure project success in Ministry of Roads and Highways in Ghana. Furthermore, the chapter also presents the finding on the influence of leadership style on project success in Ghana Ministry of Roads And Highways to help establish the appropriate leadership style (directive, supportive, participative, and achievement-oriented) suitable for Ghana Ministry of Roads and Highways in the execution of road projects.
4.2 Demographic Profile of Respondents
Table 2 presents the demographic characteristics of the participants who were selected From the Ministry of Road and Highways including gender, age, educational background, job tenure and role played in the ministry. Overall 86 took part in the study out of a target participant of 100.
Table 2: Demographic Profile of participants
Profile Category Number Percent
Male 56 65.1
Gender Female 30 34.9
Total 86 100.0
Age (years) 30-39yrs 15 17.4
40-49yrs 40 46.5
50yrs and above 31 36.1
Total 86 100.0
Diploma/ Professional 14 16.3
Educational Background Bachelor Degree 20 23.3
Masters or higher 52 60.5
Total 86 100.0
Less than 5yrs 3 3.5
5-9 yrs 13 15.1
Tenure of job (years) 10-14yrs 24 27.9
15yrs and above 46 53.5
Total 86 100.0
Account/budget officer 19 22.1
Structural engineers 22 25.6
Position held Procurement officer 14 16.2
Human Resource 12 14.0
Administrators 5 5.8
Planning officer 9 10.5
Monitoring and evaluation 5 5.8
Total 86 100.0
Source: Field Survey Data, 2017
With regard to the gender distribution of the respondents, majority, 65.1% (n=56) were males and the remaining 34.9% (n=30) were females. This implies that the information regarding leadership style and project success was obtained from both male and female participants. The participants were 30 years of age and above with 17.4% (n=15) within the age group of 30-39 years, 46.5% (n=40) within the age of 40-49 years and the remaining 36.1% (n=31) being 50years and above. Majority, 60.5% (n=52) of the participants had Mastersï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ degree academic qualification, 23.3% (n=20) had Bachelor degree academic qualification, and the remaining 16.3% (n=14) held Diploma or Professional Certificate qualification. The implication is that the participants were capable of reading and understanding the issue of the leadership and project success contained in the questionnaire.
Also, regarding the role played by the participants in sampled from the ministry, Account/budget officer constituted 22.1% (n=19), 25.6% (n=22) were structural engineers, 16.2% (n=14) were procurement officers, and 14.0% (n=12) were human resource managers in the Ministry. Furthermore 5.8% (n=5) indicated that they were Administrators, 10.5% (n=9) were planning officers, and finally, 5.8% (n=5) played the role of project monitoring and evaluation. This means that the information regarding the leadership and project success were obtained from respondents with diverse professional background therefore reducing the possible of biased response.
When the participants were also asked to indicate how long they have been working with the Ministry of Road and Highways, the following responses were elicited. Majority 53.5% (n=46) had been working in the ministry for more than 15years. This was followed by those with 10-14years job tenure in the ministry constituting 27.9% (n=24). Also, while 15.1% (n=13) were found to have 5-9years job tenure the remaining minority, 3.5% (n=3) less than 5years of job tenure. The implication is that majority of the participants had enough time in the Ministry to have knowledge of the issues of leadership style and project success in the Ministry and is helped inform their response to the questionnaire.
4.3 Extent of Application of Path-goal Leadership style
The first objective of the study was to determine the extent of application of the Path-goal leadership style to ensure project success in Ministry of Roads and Highways in Ghana. The participants were asked to indicate opinion using the Five-point Likert Scale. The dimension of leadership styles included in the study are; directive, supportive, participative and achievement-oriented leadership styles. Descriptive statistics such as mean and standard deviation are used to analyse the data. In this study, if a mean value of a particular leadership style is significantly greater than 3.0 (Test value) implies that the participants agreed that that leadership style was applied in the ministry to ensure project success. To determine whether or not the mean value is greater than 3.0 (Test score) a One-sample z-test was conducted at 5% alpha using the hypothesis (Ho: ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½3.0; H1:ï¿½ï¿½>3.0. ). Table 3 presents the finding of the analysis.
Table 3: Extent of Application of the Path-goal leadership styles
Mean Stdev z-stat P-value ) Cronbach alpha
Directive leadership style 3.43 0.72 5.54 0.000* 0.812
Supportive leadership style 3.24 1.02 2.14 0.016* 0.834
Participative leadership style 3.51 0.71 6.66 0.000* 0.785
Achievement-oriented leadership style 3.12 1.06 1.05 0.147 0.716
Overall 3.33 0.88 3.48 0.000*
*statistically significant at 5% (0.05) alpha level
Scale: 1= strongly disagree; 2=Disagree; 3=Neutral; 4=Agree; 5= Strongly agree
The output of the One-sampled z-test at revealed that overall Ministry of Road and Highways in Ghana applied the Path-goal leadership style to ensure success of projects (M=3.33, SD= 0.88, p=3.48, p<0.01). The Path-goal leadership styles largely applied included directive leadership style (M=3.43, SD=0.72, z=5.54, p<0.01). The means that the participants agreed to the assertions that leaders clearly tell project team members what is expected of them in their work, leaders direct subordinates to follow the laid down rules and regulations, work is scheduled for all project team members without their involvement, leadership usually put in place clear safety measures for all project team members, the project manager usually receives reports on a regular basis from all project team members, project leaders usually explain the expected level of performance to all project team members, and that delegation of work is emphasized to all employees
Another path-goal leadership largely applied in the execution of road projects in the MRH is supportive leadership style (M=3.24, SD=1.02, z=2.14, p<0.05). This means that the participants also agreed to the assertions that: project team members are usually treated with respect from the project leadership, project leaders usually help team members to overcome problems that stop them from carrying out their tasks, top performing project team members in the ministry are usually recognized by the project leadership, all project team members are given opportunities to attend relevant trainings and conferences, all project team members enjoy a friendly work environment, project team members are well compensated for their work, the leadership takes keen interest personal matters that concern project team members such as birthdays, sickness and even death, and that leadership usually gives feedback to project team members requests in a prompt manner
Again, participative leadership style (M=3.51, SD=0.71, z=6.66, p<0.01) was also applied to ensure successful execution of road projects in the MRH in Ghana. This implies that the participants agreed to the assertions that: Leaders consult usually project team members when the members are facing some challenges, the leadership explains to the project team members the importance of their input in decision making, all decisions made by leadership are usually shared in a timely manner with the project team members, project team members are consulted by the leadership before making key decisions, and that involving project team members in decision making usually result in high quality decisions
However, the participants failed to agree that the Ministry of Road and Highway apply achievement-oriented leadership style (M=3.12, SD=1.06, z=1.05, p>0.05) to achieve project success. This means that the participants did not agree to the assertions that: The project team members goals are set by the leadership, the goals set by the leadership are challenging, the leaders inform project team members that high level performance is expected of them, leaders have confidence in the ability of project team members to successfully accomplish allocated tasks, project team members are given constant feedback on their goal performance, project team members design their own strategies for accomplishing the given goals, there is a reward system in place for project team members who attain the given goals, and that project targets are always accomplished within specific timelines.
Overall, though Ministry of Road and Highway apply the path-goal leadership styles during the construction of road projects, leadership generally are not achievement-oriented.
4.4 Influence of Leadership style on Project Success
The second specific objective of the study was to evaluate the influence of leadership style on project success in Ghana Ministry of Roads And Highways. To achieve this objective correlation and linear regression methods were adapted to determine the effect of the various path-goal leadership styles on the overall project success
Table 4 presents the finding on the inter-item correlation matrix of the various leadership styles and project success.
Table 4: Correlation analysis
1 2 3 4 5
Overall project success (1) 1
Directive leadership style (2) .402** 1
Supportive leadership style (3) .315** .281** 1
Participative leadership style (4) .372** .253** .261** 1
Achievement-oriented leadership style (5) .262** .014 .118 .057 1
*. Correlation is significant at the 0.05 level (2-tailed).
**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).
The outcome of the correlation analysis revealed that all four leadership styles had significant positive correlations with project success (p<0.05). That is, directive leadership style (r=.402, p<0.01), supportive leadership style (r=.315, p<0.01), participative leadership style (r=.372, p<0.010), and achievement-oriented leadership style (r=.262, p<0.01), all had significant positive correlations with project success. This means that application of the path-goal leadership styles in the execution of road construction projects in MRH may have significant influence on project success. To determine the contribution of each leadership style in o explaining project success, a linear regression analysis was done and the findings presented in Table5.
Table 5: Regression analysis
Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t-stat Sig.
B Std. Error Beta
(Constant) 0.267 0.548 0.488 0.627
Directive leadership style 0.061 0.170 0.044 0.362 0.718
Supportive leadership style 0.385 0.130 0.330 2.968 0.004*
Participative leadership style 0.333 0.067 0.308 4.980 0.000*
Achievement-oriented leadership style 0.074 0.056 0.064 1.331 0.185
a. Dependent Variable: Project success
*statistically significant at 95% confidence level
R-square=46.9; F=6.82; prob. For F.=0.000
The output of the regression analysis shows that the path-goal leadership contributes to explaining project success in MRH (F=6.82, p<0.01). The coefficient of determination of the above regression model was found to be (Rsq= 46.9%). The implication is that, 46.9% of the probability project success is explained (accounted for) by path-goal leadership attributes. The remaining large proportion 53.1% of project success may be accounted for by other factors which were not included in the study.
Supportive leadership style was found to have significant positive effect on project success (ï¿½ï¿½=0.385, p<0.01). This means that if the MRH apply more of supportive leadership style in the execution of road construction projects, it would lead to significant increase in project success in the ministry.
Also application of participative leadership style was also found to have significant positive influence on project success (ï¿½ï¿½=0.333, p<0.01). This implies that if the MRH apply more of participative leadership style in road project management, it would lead to significant improvement of project success.
Directive leadership style and Achievement-oriented leadership style though had positive effect on the overall project success at 95% confidence level, however, their influences are statistically insignificant (p>0.05). The implication is that these components of path-goal leadership style did not predictor project success in the MRH.
Therefore, to establish the appropriate leadership style (directive, supportive, participative, and achievement-oriented) suitable for Ghana Ministry of Roads and Highways, the finding revealed that only supportive leadership style, and participative leadership style were significant in predicting project success and are the therefore the most suitable path-goal leadership for project success in the Ministry of Roads and Highways in Ghana.
The application of the path-goal leadership theory to projects has been investigated. For example, Muller and Turner (2007) in investigative the influence of the path-goal leadership theory to project found that goal-oriented, involving (participative), and engaging (supportive) are the appropriate leadership style that improve project performance. The current study found that only supportive and participative leadership styles but not achievement-oriented had significant influence on project success. The finding this therefore largely supports the observation made by Muller and Turner (2007) while disagreeing the research to a small extent. The appropriateness of the supportive and participative leadership styles in ensuring project success has also been investigated by Geoghegan and Dulewicz (2008). There is therefore a general agreement amongst researchers that goal-oriented, participative, and supportive leadership styles mainly effective in influencing project success but this study contends that only the supportive and participative leadership styles are significant predictors of project success in the Ministry of Roads and Highways in Ghana.
5: Conclusion and Recommendation
The study mainly examined the role of leadership in project performance in the Ministry of Roads and Highways (MRH) in Ghana. Specifically, the study determined the extent of application of the Path-goal leadership style to ensure project success in the ministry. Furthermore, the study examined the influence of leadership style on project success in MRH so as to establish the appropriate leadership style (directive, supportive, participative, and achievement-oriented) suitable for the ministry in the execution of road projects.
A quantitative methodology was used to achieve the purpose of the study. A structured questionnaire was used to conveniently gather data from employees of the Ministry of Roads and Highways in Accra. Overall, 86 employees took part in the study. Descriptive and inferential statistical tools were used in the data analysis
Regarding the extent of implementation of the path-goal leadership styles, the study found that the main path-goal leadership styles usually applied in the ministry were participative, directive, and supportive leadership styles but not achievement-oriented leadership style.
With regard to the influence of the path-goal leadership on project success, the study found that though all four path-goal leadership attributes (directive, supportive, participative, and achievement-oriented) had significant positive correlations with project success, only the supportive and participative leadership styles had significant positive influence on project success in the ministry. The study therefore identified the supportive and participative leadership styles as the appropriate leadership styles that should be adopted by the Ministry of Roads and Highways in the planning and execution of road construction projects. The path-goal leadership theory therefore finds applicability in the Ministry of Roads and Highways in Ghana as expected as expected.
Based on the findings of this study, the following are strongly recommended by researcher: The study observed that the extent of implementation of achievement-oriented leadership style was low as the participants failed to agree to the application of this leadership style in the ministry. It is the recommendation of this study that leadership in the Ministry of Roads and Highways should apply the goal-oriented leadership qualities in planning and executive of road construction projects. This can be achieved by ensuring project teams are constituted for specific road projects. Also the project team members should be empowered to set achievable goals for the project based on availability of funds. The projects should be rigorously planned and funding dully budgeted for. Effective communication should exist among the various stakeholders in the road project. There should be period review of the performance of the projects and projects performance should be consistent with the targets. Project team members should design their own strategies for accomplishing the set goals.
Since the participative and supportive leadership styles were main leadership that had significant influence on project success, the study recommend for the Ministry of Roads and Highways to frequently adopt these types of leadership to ensure higher performance of road projects. Leadership in the ministry are urged to frequently provide both financial and logistical support to project teams and as much as positive also participate in the project through regular visit to project site to motivate project members.
5.4 Limitations of the Study
The study is limited in scope because it did not cover all the Assemblies in the Greater Accra region but limited to onlyï¿½ï¿½ï¿½Assemblies. This is because the researchers were constrained by time and finances to cover all the Assemblies. The study was not sponsored and the researchers who were students were to meet a narrow deadline for the submission of the study report. Again, not all the employees in the Assemblies were sampled. This is because access to information from the respondents was the main challenge as the respondents were not willing to respond to the questionnaire.
The study recommends that future studies should consider expanding the scope of the study especially, the number of number of participants included in the study to make the findings much more generalizable.
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