Relationship between Leadership Behavior, Quality of Work Life and Human Resources Productivity: Data from Iran

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Hospital Management Research Center (HMRC), Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

2 School of Medical Information Management, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

3 Hospital Management Research Center (HMRC), Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran


  Background and Objectives: Quality of work life is an increasingly important organizational factor in health facilities. Most studies on quality of work life in hospitals have been conducted in developed countries. The few studies performed in developing countries have targeted low- and middle-performance hospitals, and they have not explored the relationship between quality of work life and other organizational factors. The purpose of this study was to gain insight on how Quality of Work Life (QWL), Leadership Behavior (LB), and Human Resources Productivity (HRP) would be inter-related in the high-performance hospitals in developing countries. Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out over the period of July to September 2011 in Hasheminejad Kidney Center, which is one of the largest Urology hospitals in Iran. Two scales were developed for measuring LB and QWL based on the literature review, and HRP was measured using a simple questionnaire with single-item questions for each dimension. The scales were distrivuted to 403 healthcare employees and 316 valid questionnaires were returned. The data was analyzed using exploratory factor analysis to examine the similarity of the factor structure between scales and collected data. An iterative model improvement procedure was adopted for improving the LB and QWL measurement models, and the final models were validated against the collected data using confirmatory factor analysis. The reliability of scales and dimensions was determined by calculating Chronbach’s alpha. Correlation analysis was carried out to examine construct validity, and the relationship between constructs was studied by regression analysis. Findings: (1) Employees had high positive perceptions of the LB (73%), QWL (70%) and HRP outcome variables (78%); (2) LB was positively correlated with QWL (β = 0.78, P < 0.001) and HRP (β = 0.74, P < 0.001); (3) QWL was positively correlated with HRP (β = 0.68, P < 0.001). All individual dimensions of LB were found positively and significant correlated with QWL. Conclusions: Our results indicate that satisfactory levels of QWL are achievable in hospitals of developing countries. In addition, higher employee perception of QWL was found to correspond with higher employee perception of LB. Leadership style, treating subordinates with trust and respect, motivating and in-person recognition of subordinates, and promoting organizational values were identified as strong predictors of QWL and HRP.