Leadership Styles and Business Essay

Leadership Styles and Business Essay

The way faculty qualifications and other factors affecting recruitment decisions of leaders in the hospitality businesses has always been a concern when it comes to leadership styles and business. Issues have also arisen with regards to the way value systems and other driving forces among the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions affect the design of hospitality leadership curriculum. This paper therefore examines leadership styles and business by comparing and contrasting two research papers on the basis on their problem and purpose statements, research questions and hypotheses, literature reviews, theoretical frameworks and research designs. In this study, our qualitative research study will be: How the Hospitality Industry Managers’ Characteristics Could Influence Hospitality Management Curricular by Sjoerd A. Gehrel 2007. In comparison, our quantitative research study will be: Faculty Qualifications and Factors Influencing Employment Decisions of Administrators in Hospitality Education, by Lead D. Wikoff 1997.

Enjoying high quality food and beverages in the hospitality industries more so among the upper segment hotel restaurants has always been regarded as a special culture (Gehrel, 2007, pp. 37-48). This special culture has always been based on the foundation of hospitableness which in turn depends on commitment and a sense of generosity as opposed to skill.

High quality services and food is considered paramount amongst the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality sector (Gehrel, 2007, pp. 37-48). Therefore, this research seeks to establish the main characteristics of the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality sectors and with a bid to transfer the knowledge in the areas of the design of hospitality management curricular.

Majority of the hospitality programs are facing the challenge of hiring the right kind of personnel in their faculties (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). This is because the field lacks qualified instructors and that there are widespread opinions concerning the exact attributes which a member of faculty ought to have (Meyer et al, 1990, pp. 183-190). In the event that it is possible to determine the right kind of instructor needed for hospitality education, faculties can aim at achieving preferred qualifications which will permit the development of doctorate programs which respond to then future needs educators will have.

Comparing and Contrasting the Two Research Studies

As has earlier been noted, this paper seeks to compare and contrast two research papers in the area of leadership styles and businesses specifically in the hospitality sector. The qualitative research study will be by Gehrel (2007) while the quantitative research study is by Wikoff (1997). The analysis is done based on the following:

Problem and Purpose Statements

The qualitative research study by Gehrel (2007) sought to investigate the possibility of studying the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality sector. This was to ascertain the vital characteristics common amongst them in order to channel the knowledge into hospitality management education (Gehrel, 2007, pp. 37-48). Therefore, the results and conclusions from this study were meant to assist in educating and preparing young professionals specifically the students in the hospitality and other service oriented industries.

It is controversial whether studying the personal attributes and qualifications which the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality industries have can be used to model educational programs for younger professionals in the field of hospitality (Gehrel, 2007, pp. 37-48). Thus, the purpose of the qualitative research study by Gehrel (2007) was to define the impacts which the attributes of hotel higher leadership ranks could have on the design of hospitality management curricular.

Hospitality programs are having it difficult to resource the required human resources with the desired skills and competence basically because there is lack of such highly skilled and competent expertise (Meyer et al, 1990, pp. 183-190). The hospitality programs have also not been able to recruit the right kind of expertise because there is no clear definition as to the exact qualifications which should be possessed by a member of faculty.

On the contrary, the purpose of the quantitative research study by Wikoff (1997) was to examine the preferences which the leaders in hospitality educational institutions had pertaining to what was relatively desirable in respect of the different doctorate degrees which influenced the qualifications of hospitality instructors (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). The quantitative research study by Wikoff (1997) also sought to investigate the issues which affected the preferences of the leaders in hospitality educational institutions and to identify the hospitality programs which had similar faculty requirements.

Research Questions/Hypotheses

As earlier noted, the aim of the qualitative research study by Gehrel (2007) was to determine the way the design of hospitality management programs could be influenced by the attributes of the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality industries. Specifically, the qualitative research study by Gehrel (2007) sought to answer the following research questions:

  1. Which are the value systems that inform the life and business of the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality industry?

  2. Which are the other driving forces which enable the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality industry to execute their jobs the way they do?

  3. How can the attributes of the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality industry assist in the development of management curricula? (Gehrel, 2007, pp. 37-48).

Specifically, the qualitative research study by Gehrel (2007) sought to investigate the following hypothesis:

Hypothesis Statement: The actions and attitudes of the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality industry are vital in the design of managerial courses in institutions offering hospitality management education.

Null Hypothesis Statement: The actions and attitudes of the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality industry are not vital in the design of managerial courses in institutions offering hospitality management education.

In comparison, the aim of the quantitative research study by Wikoff (1997) was to evaluate faculty attributes and the issues which affected the employment criteria of the leaders in hospitality educational institutions. This study also sought to establish the factors which influenced the preferences of the leaders in hospitality educational institutions (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33).

Finally, this study aimed at determining the similar hospitality programs which could be grouped together. This study had the following research questions:

  1. Which qualifications with regards to terminal degree and work industry work history do leaders in hospitality educational institutions prefer when recruiting hospitality staff members?

  2. Which issues affect the leaders in hospitality educational institutions’ preferences pertaining to qualifications for faculty recruitment?

  3. Do leaders in hospitality educational institutions in the same institutions have recognizable preferences pertaining to qualifications for faculty recruitment?

The quantitative research study by Wikoff (1997) used the following hypothesis to conduct the study:

Hypothesis Statement: Evaluating the relative significance of particular elements of faculty qualifications provides hospitality educational institutions with an insight into the most appropriate way to design their faculties.

Null Hypothesis Statement: Evaluating the relative significance of particular elements of faculty qualifications provides hospitality educational institutions with an insight into the most appropriate way to design their faculties.

Literature Reviews

Researchers perceive energy, emotional stability and the ability to inspire among as desirable factors when it comes to successful and effective entrepreneurship although they add that these factors cannot necessarily be acquired (Morrison et al 1999). Some of these attributes are related to personality characteristics like energy and health. Attempts have been made at establishing and presenting the relationship and likely integration between personality characteristics and individual values (Olver & Mooradian, 2003, pp.109-125).

According to Olver and Mooradian (2003, pp. 109-125), both personality and values highlight clear and differential attributes of the person. They also act as the proof to suggest that there is a relatively strong relationship between individual characteristics and values (Olver & Mooradian, 2003, pp.109-125). Owing to the fact that personality characteristics are perceived to be natural, it is not possible to influence of modify them in a significant way.

Individual values constitute the natural elements which form part of the way an individual’s acts and behaves. Research has shown that individual traits and values significantly influence the human resources’ preference for a specific organization culture (Tepeci & Bartlett 2002, pp. 151-170). The empirical evidence for the perceived relationship between values and behavior is still underway. This means that even as the perceived relationship is being appreciated care should be taken to exercise casualty (Bardi & Schwartz, 2002, pp.1207-1220).

In the context of leadership styles and business, distinctions can be made between situational thoughts and the personalogist perspectives of thought (Gehrel, 2007, pp. 37-48). The proponents of the situationalist school of thought propose that it is possible to predict behavior by examining an individual’s circumstance or firm. On the contrary, the proponents of personalogists school of thought propose that personality characteristics, values as well as beliefs are the main determinant of behavior.

There seem to be limited availability of literature pertaining to value systems and other driving forces of professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality industry. Morrison (2001, pp. 784-794) examined the biographies of two individuals who were involved in entrepreneurship while Logoherel et al (2004, pp.109-120) studied the personality traits, risk averseness and decision making of hotels and restaurant leaders.

Of the two studies, none shows a relationship with higher level leadership positions in business in the hospitality industry (Gehrel, 2007, pp. 37-48). Similarly, no studies have been conducted on the way the traits of professionals occupying higher level leadership positions can influence the design of curricula amongst the institutions offering hospitality management.

On the other hand, the literature review of the quantitative research study by Wikoff (1997) indicates that majority of the hospitality management programs are faced with the challenge of hiring the right kind of staff for two reasons. First, the instructors in the filed of hospitality industry are limited. Second, there is no standard definition as to what exactly constitutes a qualified member of faculty (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33).

Past studies have required leaders in hospitality educational institutions to rate the desirable qualifications for potential recruits for the positions of assistant, associate and full professors. Interestingly, the four qualifications which were highly rated were the fact that the potential recruits had to have a PhD degree or its equivalent (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33), such as Ed.D or J.D. Alternatively, the equivalent could be or D.B.A. The other qualification which the leaders in hospitality educational institutions stated was that the potential candidates had to have a teaching history preferably at the college level.

The potential candidates were required to have worked in the hospitality industry. Lastly, the leaders in hospitality educational institutions also mentioned that the potential candidates were expected to have published or undertaken research (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). Even though the order of preferences were different based on the various positions, it was evident that the PhD requirement was the highest rated among the three positions.

In addition, to the above four qualifications, the potential candidates needed to at least have a doctorate degree in hospitality management, besides having been involved in hospitality services. At the same time, the leaders in hospitality educational institutions were asked to give any other characteristic which could influence faculty marketability (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). The leaders in hospitality educational institutions also mentioned that the candidates needed to have achieved a minimum of a degree in hospitality management and must have been responsible for either some profits or losses within the industry.

The leaders in hospitality educational institutions further stated that the quality of the institutions from where the degrees had been earned as well as the place where the potential candidates had acquired their teaching exercise also went along way in influencing their marketability potential (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). Interestingly, the past experience in the industry and service histories were not rated by leaders in hospitality educational institutions highly rated.

Possibly, the leaders in hospitality educational institutions did not rate past experience in the industry and service history highly because there is an umbilical cord relationship between hospitality education and the industry (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). The implication here is that graduates from hospitality educational institutions are supposed to directly get absorbed into the industry (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). Similarly, the review of literature also concludes that leaders in hospitality educational institutions indicated a strong preference for the doctorate degree as the most desirable attribute in faculty recruitment.

Theoretical Frameworks

I have to mention that this study did not specify its theoretical framework. From my analysis however, I believe this qualitative research study by Gehrel (2007) was based was the theory that its findings would greatly contribute to what is already known in the area of leadership within the hospitality management businesses. The qualitative research study by Gehrel (2007) was also based on the principle that the entrepreneurial and leadership attributes of the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions would assist in determining the way the design of curricular among the institutions offering hospitality education (Gehrel, 2007, pp. 37-48).

This would significantly develop the leadership styles of the future professionals in the very important hospitality industry. It implies that by understanding the exact entrepreneurial and leadership attributes of the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality industry, the knowledge gained from the study would be used in designing academic curricular which would respond to the needs of the industry (Gehrel, 2007, pp. 37-48). In this way, the study will be enhancing the leadership styles of future professionals in hospitality businesses.

Similarly, the quantitative research study by Wikoff (1997) did not specify its theoretical framework. However, I believe the quantitative research study by Wikoff (1997) was based on the theoretical framework that the findings would help the leaders in hospitality educational institutions in making choices pertaining to the right kind of degree students could study, the most important content areas as well as other issues which also influenced employment potentials (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). At the same time, this was based on the theory that the findings would be very vital in the design of curricular at the doctorate level by the hospitality instructors.

By highlighting the right kind of degree which an individual could pursue in line with the hospitality industry, the quantitative research study by Wikoff (1997) sought to enlighten the leaders in hospitality educational institutions with the knowledge which they would directly impact on the future students of hospitality management by developing their leadership steles in the area of hospitality businesses management (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33).

In the same way, by preferring PhD qualifications as the most viable recruitment criteria, the leaders in hospitality educational institutions would employ the most competent and experienced instructors (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). This would also ensure that the students are taught by the most competent university dons who would equip them with the right kind of leadership styles in preparation for future leadership positions within various hospitality businesses.

Research Designs

The qualitative research study by Gehrel (2007) sought to establish the relationship between entrepreneurial and leadership attributes of the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality industry and the design of curricula among the institutions which offered hospitality education. The research design of this study was based on epistemological perspective which falls within the constructionist research design (Chamaz 2006; Flick 2006).

Constructionist research design is the fundamental basis upon which many qualitative researches such as the one by Gehrel (2007) are conducted. This research design is based on the fact that the real phenomena we research on are social results of the causal agents, interrelationships and institutions (Gehrel, 2007, pp. 37-48). The constructionist research design begins by reviewing literature as to establish a testable hypothesis. This research design also made use of the grounded theory approach in which case, the theory is generated from data which has been collected in a systematic way and analyzed through the research procedure (Chamaz 2006).

This research was characterized by an assumption that the entrepreneurial and leadership attributes of the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality industry had the potential of significantly affecting curricular design in hospitality management educational institutions (Gehrel, 2007, pp. 37-48). Under this constructionist research design, sampling was done amongst the upper echelons of leaderships through structured interviews, eventually analyzing all the data obtained through qualitative techniques.

On the other hand, the quantitative research study by Wikoff (1997) was based on the survey research design. Data for this study was collected by the survey instrument which the researcher had designed (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). Under the survey research design, the researcher conducted a prior pilot study as way determining how valid and reliable the survey instrument was.

In contrast with the qualitative research study by Gehrel (2007) where only the upper echelons of leaderships had been sampled through structured interviews, this the quantitative research study by Wikoff (1997) randomly sampled about 75 deputy program leaders in hospitality educational institutions (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). With a total response rate of about 42%, the data which was collected from this survey instrument was deemed reliable.

The implication here is that a 42% response rate was sufficient enough to test for reliability and validity which was done using the Cronbach’s Coefficient Alpha as the statistical tool (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). At the same time, the survey research design which the quantitative research study by Wikoff (1997) employed used the principal component factor analysis as the statistical technique of establishing the content validity of the research instrument.

In this survey research design, the research subjects were the leaders in hospitality educational institutions which offered baccalaureate programs. This study represented the entire 50 states in the United States (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). In this the quantitative research study by Wikoff (1997), sampling was done by searching the potential and prevailing memberships to the Council on Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Education.

The quantitative research study by Wikoff (1997) used many variables in establishing the qualification which the leaders in hospitality educational institutions mostly preferred when it came to the recruitment of hospitality management instructors (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). This study used 95 items to survey the characteristics of the leaders in hospitality educational institutions, the characteristics of the programs together with the institutions and finally the characteristics of the faculty.

This research design made use of the analysis of variances (ANOVA) in investigating the first research question which concerned the qualifications pertaining to terminal degrees and experience in the industry which were preferred by the leaders in hospitality educational institutions when recruiting staff in the hospitality faculties (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33).

This research design also used multivariate regression analysis to examine the issues which influenced the leaders in hospitality educational institutions’ preferences pertaining to faculty qualifications (Palys, 2003). Finally, the research design used cluster analysis in examining the whether leaders in hospitality educational institutions at the same programs possessed recognizable preferences when it came to faculty credentials.

Conclusions

The qualitative research study by Gehrel (2007) concluded that channeling the values professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality industry held to the hospitality educational institutions would provide important information to future leaders thereby developing their leadership skills for future careers in hospitality businesses (Gehrel, 2007, pp. 37-48). If the characteristics of the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality industry were to be helpful to educational institutions, then there was need to connect the schools with the industry.

In this way, the future professionals would gain practical experience and gain from learning opportunities which are provided by the organizations in the industry (Gehrel, 2007, pp. 37-48). This would develop the leadership styles of the future professionals as they prepared for future careers in hospitality businesses. This study therefore proved the hypothesis that the actions and attitudes of the professionals occupying higher level leadership positions in the hospitality industry are vital in the design of managerial courses in institutions offering hospitality management education.

On the other hand, the quantitative research study by Wikoff (1997) concluded that leaders in hospitality educational institutions wanted doctorate trained faculty instructors (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). All the same, the time taken in studying for the doctorate degrees are usually spent outside the away from the industry thereby creating a trade off. Debate concerning the right balance between the way the industry can be applicable to the classroom environment.

This would in turn affect the way the faculties prepare to administer teaching in educational institutions and the way they design curricular at the doctorate level (Wikoff, 1997, pp. 27-33). Until the time the hospitality can reach an agreement on the importance of training in relation to education, debate concerning experience in the industry and academic credentials is likely to continue. Therefore, this study supports our hypothesis that evaluating the relative significance of particular elements of faculty qualifications provides hospitality educational institutions with an insight into the most appropriate way to design their faculties.

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