The International Journal of Psychosocial Rehabilitation
 

Influence of leadership styles on workplace deviant
behaviours in the Nigerian Banking Industry

Foluso Philip Adekanmbi
Wilfred I Ukpere

Department of Industrial Psychology and People Management, Johannesburg Business School,
College of Business & Economic, University of Johannesburg, South Africa,
E-mail: wiukpere@uj.ac.za
 


Citation:
Ukpere WI (2019) Influence of leadership styles on workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian Banking Industry.
 International Journal of Psychosocial Rehabilitation. Vol 22 (2) 171-194



Abstract:

This paper’s aim is to look into the influence of leadership styles on workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking Industry. The paper adopted a quantitative research approach, which based survey. Also, one non-probability sampling method and two probability sampling methods were used in the study, namely purposive, stratified and simple random sampling, respectively. The empirical findings indicated a statistically significant moderate negative relationship between the transactional leadership style and workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. Out of the two leadership styles (transformational and transactional), only transactional leadership style statistically significantly predicts workplace deviant behaviours negatively in the Nigerian banking industry. The outcome of the present study has positive influence on the management of employees’ deviant behaviour in the Nigerian banking industry as transactional leadership style was found to significantly reduce workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. Hence, the Nigerian banking industry can minimise workplace deviant behaviours through a constant adoption of transactional leadership style.This investigation is distinctive, as it significantly contributes to scientific knowledge, in terms of identifying an appropriate leadership style(s), new strategies of reducing workplace deviant behaviours, and how leadership styles relate to workplace deviant behaviours, specifically in Nigeria’s banking industry. Hence, this research has highlighted the benefits of utilising of transactional leadership style in reducing workplace deviant behaviours.

Keywords: Transformational leadership style, Transactional Leadership style, Workplace deviant behaviours, Nigerian banking industry

 

 


Introduction:

There are rules, guidelines and ethics that guide organisations, and every member of an organisation is expected to act according to those rules. As a matter of fact, workplace deviant behaviour can either be positive or negative. As mentioned in Appelbaum et al. (2007), positive deviant behaviour is an intentional behaviour that is derived from an individual’s set of standards from an ethical point of view. According to Appelbaum et al. (2007), research has concentrated on negative behaviours, which are deviant, for instance, withdrawal, absenteeism, concealing effort, and behaviours that lead to corporate inequality. The pervasiveness of deviant behaviours, for example, theft, fraud, sexual harassment, suppression effort and hostile behaviours, pose great challenges to organisations (Peterson, 2002a; Aquino, Galperin & Bennett, 2004; Lawrence & Robinson, 2007). Hence, the current study is concerned with the later facet of workplace deviant behaviour as aforementioned, which is negative deviant behaviour. Notably, deviant behaviours in the workplace have become a growing concern for both academics and specialists, and the occurrence of employees’ deviant behaviours seem to have become significantly alarming, in view of their harmful effects on employees and organisations.

Moreover, the nature of business operations in the banking industry in Nigeria makes the occurance of dishonest activities in the industry common, as banking institutions and other financial institutions engage in business that centres on money transactions, which expose bank employees more to indulge in fraudulent practices (Owolabi & Babalola, 2011). Numerous kinds of fraud are experienced in the Nigerian banking industry (Balogun, Selemogwea & Akinfala, 2013). There are still concerns about unethical practices and fraud in the Nigerian banking industry, regardless of regulations and regular examination by the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, as well as the Central Bank of Nigeria (Chiezey & Onu, 2013). According to Ajayi (2003), fraud is rampant in a nation like Nigeria, and, is reflected in almost all areas of the nation. An example of this can be seen in the accusation of abuse of office by an ex-Inspector General of Police. The Nigerian economic and financial crimes commission (EFCC) inquiries showed that since he assumed the position of the Inspector General of Police, the officer accumulated astonishing affluence, worth billions of naira. As if fraud is not enough, deviant behaviours that prevail in the Nigerian banking industry also include indecent dressing by employees as well as sexual harassment. One of the reasons is that, in Nigeria, the introduction of the capitalization policy by Professor Chukwuma Charles Soludo, former CBN Governor, led to a reawakening of all existing banks, prompting banks to embark on an aggressive money drive to meet new challenges (Ilupeju, 2008). This new arrangement triggered unwarranted conditions for employees particularly for female employees, who were forced to accommodate depositors at whatever cost, even if it went against their personal wishes and desires (Ilupeju, 2008). Olufayo (2011) also claims that, recently in the Nigerian banking industry, expansions were made to marketing departments to accommodate young, attractive and elegant female employees who are employed to use their bodies to canvass for deposit as well as clients. In addition, abusive behaviour as a form of deviant behaviour in the Nigerian banking industry cannot be ignored. The reason is that, as a means of increasing profits and acquiring a competitive advantage in the Nigerian banking industry, several of its commercial banks have adopted tactics that might be harmful to employees by embracing marketing strategies that may be viewed as unethical (Onyishi, 2012). Furthermore, bullying seems common within the Nigerian banking industry. Ayodele and Bello (2008) note that beyond being hostile environment, bullying is geared towards causing damages or pains, and happens frequently. It normally occurs in a situation where there is power imbalance between individuals. As reflected in study of Oghojafor, Muo and Olufayo (2012), 91% of the respondents agreed that incidences of bullying are on the increase in Nigerian workplaces, especially in the banking sector.

Obviously, the environment in which the Nigerian banking industry operates remains a threat and great challenge to its management because it is characterised by extremely acquisitive societal values, able to result in deviant and unethical behaviours, poor leadership, political uncertainty and policy inconsistency. Hence, this environment has resulted in the distressed condition of the Nigerian banking industry (Lewachi, 2012). However, successful motivational factors (such as reward systems and leadership styles) or policies have positive impacts on the commitment of employees in Nigerian banks, thereby reducing deviant workplace behaviours (Awolusi, 2013). The nature of the influence of leadership is that a leader sets goals for each member, as well as for the group, while team members willingly work together with each other to achieve these goals. This is confirmed by Ngambi (2011), who posits that leadership is the practice of influencing other individuals’ obligation in the direction of realising the overall organisational goals with passion, integrity, and value add through shared vision. Hence, leadership style is a concept that cannot be overemphasised when discussing banking in Nigeria. In a study conducted by Awolusi (2013) the impact of leadership styles on the deviant behaviours of employees in banks in Ado Ekiti, Nigeria was investigated. Their findings revealed a link between the two leadership styles of study (transactional and transformational leadership styles) and deviant behaviours. They, therefore, suggested that transformational and transactional leadership styles do influence deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. Also, Essien, Arene and Nweze (2013) confirmed a link between leadership styles (transformational and transactional leadership styles) and workplace deviant behaviours among Nigerian bank employees, arguing that most employees left the bank as a result of their superiors’ approaches in dealing with them. However, to further empahsise the relationship between leadership styles and workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry, the present paper considers the influence of leadership styles on workplace deviant behaviours. Nevertheless, despite the growing interest in the topics of leadership styles and workplace deviant behaviours in the banking industry, the topic still seems either overlooked or not properly investigated, which has exacerbated the myriad of challenges experienced in the industry. Therefore, the aim of this paper is to ascertain the influence of leadership styles on workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. Thus, the objectives of the current paper are listed below:

  • To ascertain the leadership styles that can predict workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry;
  • To establish the relationship between leadership styles and workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry;
  • To develop a theoretical framework that could be used to effectively address workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry.
Literature Review

This segment expatiates on a few theories of leadership, as well as explains the concepts of leadership and workplace deviant behaviours. Also, it shows a review of the relationship between leadership styles and workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry.

Path-goal theory

This theory advocates that, the specific goal of a leader is to extend support and essential help to the followers, as they work to meet their own targets successfully, apart from that of the organisation (Silverthorne, 2001). Also, this theory involves two main situational contingencies, where the group members’ personal features represent the first contingency, with the other being the work setting (Daft, 2005). This theory is founded on two different hypotheses; the first one states that the behaviour of a leader will be seen as acceptable to his or her followers only when they perceive it as useful to gain future job satisfaction, while the second one states that the behaviour of a leader the main motivation for employees. Hence, appropriate leader behaviours result in motivation for followers (Alanazi, Alharthey & Rasli, 2013). Supportive leadership should provide additional job satisfaction to stimulate active performance towards organisational goals. Also, a directive leadership might be inappropriate and impede job satisfaction and the employees’ performance, if a high employee experience and ability exists. Meanwhile, if the organisation’s system is clear and not flexible, the leader should be extra helpful rather than being instructive. Hence, this viewpoint shows that the leader’s role is dependent on the structure’s size and followers’ work environment (Alanazi, et al., 2013).

Leader-member exchange (LMX) theory

Dansereau et al. (1975) posit that this theory acknowledged that a dyadic relationship is developed between followers and leaders, where leaders deal with individuals in different ways, which leads to followers having two groups, namely the out-group and the in-group. The in-group comprises a few followers trusted by the leader and with whom he or she creates an exceptional quality of exchange relationship. In contrast, the out-group comprises the residual followers that the leader relates to strictly in a formal way. The quality of the leader-member exchange is positively linked with organisational commitment, follower satisfaction, reduced indication of work stress, performance ratings by leaders, role clarity, and is negatively linked to employee turnover intent and role conflict (Deluga, 1998; Bauer & Green, 1996). In general, results suggest that developing an exceptional quality of relationship with leaders can positively influence work, and reduce deviant behaviours (Gerstner & Day, 1997). Also, this theory, which is a form of the transactional style of leadership, proposes that managers grow diverse kinds of exchange relationships with their followers, where exchanges that relate to influence, loyalty and professionalism, are created (Liden & Maslyn, 1998). Follower-members of such interactions are known as either the in-group members or the out-group members in low or high value relations (Keller & Dansereau, 2001). Low quality relationships depend more on the formal employment relationship, while higher quality relationships are known for the regular exchange of esteemed resources and involvement in events beyond the official requirements. In response, in-group staff members exhibit higher performance, lesser intention to leave the organisation, and willing to go extra miles (Keller & Dansereau, 2001). Also, managers appreciate the loyalty of in-group members, which enables him/her to achieve positive impact on outputs (Keller & Dansereau, 2001). Therefore, a good measure of transactional leadership style, which leads to high quality in-group membership, makes followers reciprocate with higher levels of performance, and reduced workplace deviant behaviours (Keller & Dansereau, 2001). Members of out-groups are managed in the slim limits of their official contract of employment. The implicit contract between the member and the organisation legitimises authority. Hence, the leader will give support, assistance, and consideration, which are required by duty, but will not go outside such limits (Lunenburg, 2010). A pertinent impact of the LMX theory is that there are important job consequences for the quality of relationship between the leader and each group member. Studies have also shown that followers who enjoy the in-group prestige alongside their leaders tend to have more job satisfaction, higher outputs, enhanced motivation, reduced deviant behaviours, and engage in more citizenship behaviour in the workplace (Chen, et al., 2007).

Both theories stated above, will be applied to the present research, as the path-goal theory postulates that followers perceive their leaders’ behaviours as acceptable, when they see them as useful in achieving future job satisfaction and that leaders’ behaviours are significant motivation for employees which eventually reduces deviant behaviours (Alanazi, Alharthey & Rasli, 2013). The leader-member exchange theory further emphasises the positive influence of work and its reduction of deviant behaviours that are achieved by developing an exceptional quality of relationship with leaders. Hence, the present paper will investigate this assertion by exploring the influence of leaderships styles on workplace deviant behaviours, through a survey research method.

However, the concepts of leadership and workplace deviant behaviours are reviewed in the sections below.

An important fact is that, a day hardly passes by when there are no stories in the mass media concerning leadership, which is one of the world’s ancient conceptions (Bass, 1997; Xiaoxia & Jing, 2006). According to Wiza and Hlanganipai (2014), one of the most interesting and ancient issues in the world is leadership. According to Wiza and Hlanganipai (2014), leadership is said to permeate every level of an organisation and often comprises management chores. Different definitions have been provided by various writers (Jing-zhou, Xiao-xue & Xia-qing, 2010; Bass, 1997; Xiaoxia & Jing, 2006; Wiza & Hlanganipai, 2014). These researchers further allude to the fact that the above leadership conceptualisation indicates the significance of growing leadership that stimulates co-operation, confidence and commitment among followers and leaders in organisations. Moreover, Clark and Clark (1994, as cited in Okoroji, Anyanwu & Ukpere, 2014) observe leadership as a procedure through which an individual impacts other people to achieve an objective and guides the organisation to be more unified and coherent.

Meanwhile, it is not possible to get an accurate estimation of the price of experiencing workplace deviant behaviours, such as employee theft, corporate fraud, revenge, violence, withholding job efforts, bullying, and the measure employed to avoid or correct them. Instances of workplace deviant behaviours comprise behaviours directed towards organisations (theft, sabotage, absenteeism, aggression, violence, lateness, and exerting little work effort) and behaviours towards individuals, for instance, acting rudely, arguing, and making jest of others) (Kidwell & Martin, 2004). Appelbaum et al. (2007) specifies that there has been a focus on undesirable behaviours, which may be classified as deviant, for example, withdrawal, withholding efforts, absenteeism, and behaviours that result in corporate disparity. Hence, the researcher combined several workplace deviant behaviours into a structure.

Figure 1: The typology of workplace deviant behaviours.

The typology of deviant behaviours in the workplace, according to Robinson and Bennett (1995), as demonstrated above, differs alongside two dimensions, namely interpersonal as opposed to organisational. The other dimension reveals strictness of deviant behaviours, which range from minor to serious (Robinson & Bennett, 1995; Appelbaum et al., 2007). The first quadrant (which is the production deviance) is known to include behaviour, which disrupts official norms that define the lowest quantity and quality of work to be completed (Robinson & Bennett, 1995). All these behaviours under this quadrant impact organisation’s productivity (Robinson & Bennett, 1995; Rogojan, 2009). Robinson and Bennett (1995, p. 565) also state that the second quadrant (which is property deviance) is where employees obtain or destroy the assets of the organisation without being told to do so. Such behaviour destroys organisations in the long run. Robinson and Bennett (1995, p. 566), further mention that the third quadrant (political deviance) happens when an individual involves him/herself in social relations, which place other individuals in political or personal difficulty. Hence, the consequences of such behaviour are severe (Rogojan, 2009). The fourth quadrant (personal aggression) occurs when employees engage in aggressive behaviours. According to Robinson and Bennett (1995, p. 566), this personal aggression in the workplace happens when an employee is aggressive towards other employees. From here, the review will focus on the connection between leadership styles and workplace deviant behaviours within the Nigerian banking industry.

Udoh and Agu (2012) considered the influence of the transactional and transformational styles of leadership on workplace deviant behaviours of some bank employees in Cross River State, Nigeria. Their results showed a substantial link between both styles of leadership (transactional and transformational) and workplace deviant behaviours. In their investigation, Ojokuku et al. (2012) considered the influence of styles of leadership (transactional and transformational) on deviant behaviours in designated banks in Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria. They also established that leadership styles (transactional and transformational) influenced deviant behaviour among Nigerian bank employees in Oyo State, Nigeria. Hence, the above literature reveals that the transactional and transformational leadership styles do influence deviant behaviour in the Nigerian banking industry. Furthermore, Akindele (2011) compares the Nigerian banking industry to not merely a scuffle field with an obvious gunfire between the banks and the crooks, but to an absolute mine field, wherein several banks and their top managers are in private alliances with the opponent. Recently, the Nigerian banking industry has been experiencing severe reforms that have emerged since the Central bank of Nigeria’s prerequisite for commercial banks to grow their share to a minimum amount of 25 billion naira (Kama, 2006). This activated mergers and acquisitions, which dropped the number of players in the industry from 89 banks to 25 banks at the beginning of 2006 (Kama, 2006). However, the successful banks caused about 93.5% and 97% of all deposit assets and liabilities of the industry, respectively (Central Bank of Nigeria Annual Report, 2007). The managerial structures of the banks remained insufficient, as there were instances of official carelessness among managers, as well as instances of financial abuses (Adedipe, 2004). Yet, according to the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) annual report (2006, p. 64) in November 2005, the Central Bank of Nigeria banned six bank officers, comprising a chairperson and a non-executive director, for expert misbehaviour. Also, the previous managing director and chief executive officer (CEO) of a Nigerian bank, was detained, as well as arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), concerning an accusation of redirecting peoples’ funds into his private account to the sum of N2, 108,135,484.68. In her study, Chovwen (2013) notes that most top bank executives condone unhealthy practices among their employees so long as it allows them to achieve their targets. All these facts affirm the effect of leadership styles on workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. Going by this literature, the following hypothesis has been formed.

H1: The transformational leadership style and the transactional leadership style significantly predict workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry.

In addition, Ojokuku et al. (2012) posit that transformational leadership has had a substantial impact on reducing deviant behaviour among employees at selected banks in Ibadan, Oyo State. Unlike the findings of Ojokuku et al. (2012), Fasola et al. (2013) show that the transactional leadership style significantly reduced deviant behaviour among Nigerian bank employees. Their findings indicated that the transactional leadership style and its dimensions (management by exception and contingent reward) have a negative and significant relationship with deviant behaviour among Nigerian bank employees. Hence, their results imply that the transactional leadership style renders Nigerian bank employees unlikely to engage in workplace deviant behaviours. Fasola et al. (2013) also specify that the transformational leadership style instead does not significantly render Nigerian bank employees unlikely to engage in deviant behaviour. In addition, Obiwuru et al. (2011) mentioned the fact that the transactional leadership style had a negative relationship and significantly reduced deviant behaviour among employees at some banks in Nigeria. Also, in their study, Nwokocha and Iheriohanma, (2015) noted a negative relationship between the transactional leadership style and workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. From this literature the following hypothesis has been generated:

H2: There is a significant relationship between the transformational leadership style, transactional leadership style and workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry.

At this juncture, emphasis will shift to the paper’s research methodology.

Research Methodology

The current paper adopted a quantitative research approach to investigate the influence of leadership styles on workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. Hence, the investigation adopted one non-probability sampling method and two probability sampling approaches, namely, purposive, stratified and simple random sampling.

A research design reacts to queries that would decide the route that an investigator should take in his/her research trip (Kumar, 2010). Therefore, a research design should correlate with the research purpose (Denscombe, 2010; De Vaus, 2001). A quantitative research design was applied in the current investigation, as it makes use of a research sample to obtain data, which can be generalised to the entire population.

Research methods involve techniques of collecting data. Hence, a survey research method was exploited in the present research. A questionnaire, which is an official list of questions, designed to obtain responses from respondents on the topic of study (Babbie & Mouton, 2001), was self-administered, and floated to respondents as the instrument of gathering data.

In the present study, the participants consist of 600 employees from ten (10) commercial banks in Nigeria. One hundred (100) respondents were sought from each of the six (6) local government areas from both the Lagos and Oyo States, comprising a sum of three hundred (300) bank employees for each of the states, making a total of six hundred respondents that the questionnaires were distributed to. The population size from which the sample was drawn was around 6,000 bank staff across ten commercial banks in Oyo and Lagos states of Nigeria. Hence, the sample size for the population size (6,000) according to the sample size table falls within 586 to 600 (Morgan & Krejcie, 2012).

Research instruments

The current study used a questionnaire to measure the study’s variables, as some were adapted. This questionnaire, which formed the basis of the quantitative research, was distributed to bank employees in Nigeria. Moreover, the questionnaire was further made available to respondents online through survey monkey.

Section A: Demographic questions

The first segment of the questionnaire dealt with respondents’ demographic profile data (age, gender, religion, educational qualifications, marital status, job status, name of bank, department, work experience in years, location of bank, number of dependants, and residential area).

Section B: Leadership styles

In this study a 36-item Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire Scale by Bass and Avolio (1997 as adopted by Njabulo, 2013) was adapted to measure leadership styles. The Cronbach’s alpha for the 36-item scale was 0.70. Also, the scale has a five-point Likert type format of: Not at all (1), Once in a while (2), Sometimes (3), Fairly often (4) and Frequently if not always (5).

Section C: Workplace deviant behaviours

To measure workplace deviant behaviours, Bennett and Robinson’s (2000) 19-item measuring scale was adapted by the current researchers. The scale comprises 12 items for organisational deviance and 7 items for interpersonal deviance. The scale has a five-point Likert type format of Never (1), Seldom (2), Sometimes (3), Often (4) and Always (5). The developer derived a Cronbach’s co-efficient of 0.81 for the organisational deviance items, and 0.78 for the interpersonal deviance items. Pilot study was conducted to ensure the efficacy of the survey, as well as to identify any potential problems on time.

Population and sampling

Best and Kahn (2007) argue that a population refers to any people with one or more features in common, which are of interest to the researcher. Due to huge size of the population, scholars frequently cannot include the entire population in their study because of limited funds and/or time limitations. Therefore, the present study utilised one non-probability sampling method and two probability sampling methods to select the sample, namely purposive, stratified and simple random sampling, respectively. Moreover, a pilot investigation was conducted to establish the contextual relevance of the questionnaire, as research experts were involved in examining the content specificity of these questionnaires. This was done to revalidate the questionnaires, and to check whether they would suit the Nigerian banking industry’s culture. The current researcher proceeded to conduct a pilot study among twenty (20) bankers at different banks before distributing the questionnaires. The pilot study was also done to test the significance, simplicity as well as the convenience of the questions that constitute the questionnaires that were distributed to respondents (Sue & Lois, 2007) at various Nigerian banks.

Leadership styles scale

Furthermore, the leadership styles scale items were exposed to an item analysis process to upsurge the construct validity and to determine the reliability of the test instrument. The standard for item selection under the item-total statistics in data analysis, is 0.40. Of the 36 items that measured leadership style, 16 items measured the transformational leadership style, while 20 items measured the transactional leadership style. Seven (7) of the 16 items were deleted, as their coefficient was below 0.40 (for instance, not reliable), which is less than the acceptable statistical limit. Hence, 9 items were valid and reliable to measure the transformational style of leadership. Also, the item-total correlation in the transactional leadership style shows that 12 of the 20 items that measured the transactional leadership style had coefficients below 0.40 and were, therefore, deleted. Hence, 8 items were retained, as they were valid and reliable to measure transactional leadership styles in the Nigerian banking industry. Thus, all the 17 items were chosen for the final leadership styles measuring scale. This data is illustrated in table 1 below:

Table 1: Summary of results from piloting and analysing data retrieved for leadership styles measuring scale.

Main Scale

Sub-Scale

Items

Mean

Variance

Standard Deviation

Cronbach alpha

Spearman-brown (Unequal Length)

 

Transformational Leadership Style

9

32.2

48.5

7.0

0.87

0.88

Transactional Leadership Style

8

29.0

43.4

6.6

0.89

0.96

(Equal Length)

Leadership Styles

17

61.1

171

30.1

0.93

0.92

Workplace deviance behaviours scale

Also, all 19 items that measured workplace deviant behaviours were reviewed by research experts, and 12 were found to be usable to measure workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. The 12 items were tested and only 1 item had an item-total correlation coefficient of below 0.40 and was deleted. In sum, 11 items were valid and reliable to measure workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. The derived Cronbach’s alpha for items that measured workplace deviant behaviours was 0.87, while the split-half reliability co-efficient, using the spearman-brown co-efficient (for unequal length), was 0.89. Thus, 11 items were chosen for the final workplace deviant behaviours measuring scale. These results are illustrated in Table 2 below.

Table 2: The summary of results from piloting and analysing data retrieved for workplace deviant behaviour measuring scale.

Scale

 

Items

Mean

Variance

Standard Deviation

Cronbach alpha

Spearman-brown (Unequal Length)

Workplace Deviant Behaviours

 

11

 

28.7

 

77.1

 

8.8

 

0.87

 

0.89

Data collection

The present researcher chose Nigerian bank employees to ascertain the influence of leadership styles on workplace deviant behaviours. The bank employees’ anonymity were guaranteed in the process of the survey and this was upheld while conducting the research. The current researchers provided boxes in which completed questionnaires were anonymously dropped, which also protected the interests and image of the participants. Also, an online survey platform (survey monkey) was designed by one of the experts in the statistical consultation service at University of Johannesburg, South Africa, namely STATKON, to generate online responses, and to act as a way of further standardising the questionnaire. The total number of valid questionnaires that the researcher retrieved from participants was 537. The retrieved valid questionnaires were statistically analysed.

In addition, the researcher was mindful of the ethical considerations, which relate to gaining access to data through survey. Therefore, the researcher took the necessary measures to ensure voluntary participation in the investigation; that the prospective participants knew the reason for the investigation at the beginning of the survey, and were also guaranteed that the information that is shared will be kept completely confidential, and that bank employee’s anonymity will be maintained. The researcher acted responsibly and in a professional manner when distributing the questionnaires. The researcher also ensured the safety and security of data. The researcher sought informed consent from the bank managers at different branches of the banks under study to conduct this survey. The current researcher further took steps to maintain the confidentiality of the data collected and provided contact details to respondents should they require any follow up information.

Data presentation and analysis

The questionnaires that were circulated to respondents were retrieved and analysed with the statistical package for social sciences (SPSS v 24). Data from the questionnaires, as coded on the SPSS, were first vetted and cleaned before engaging in any descriptive and inferential statistical analysis. Afterwards, the frequency, descriptive and inferential analyses were conducted. The following sections show the results of the analysed data.

Descriptive Summary

Table 3: Summary of the custom table showing item responses, means and standard deviations of leadership styles (transformational and transactional) in the Nigerian banking industry.

No

Statements


Not at all

(1)


Once in a while

(2)


Sometimes

(3)


Fairly often

(4)


Frequently if not always

(5)

Mean

SD

Ranking

1

Provides me with assistance in exchange for my efforts in the bank

24.2%

10.4%

5.8%

41.2%

18.4%

3.19

1.479

11

2

Fails to interfere until problems become serious in the bank

16.4%

19.7%

14.7%

16.9%

32.2%

3.29

1.494

9

3

Talks about important values and beliefs in the bank

7.3%

19.9%

18.8%

31.8%

22.2%

3.42

1.234

7

4

Is absent when needed to resolve issues in the bank

14.0%

27.7%

13.0%

26.4%

18.8%

3.08

1.360

13

5

Seeks differing perspectives when solving problems in the bank

19.0%

20.7%

22.9%

28.5%

8.8%

2.87

1.261

17

6

Talks optimistically about the future of bank staff

7.3%

22.0%

25.3%

21.8%

23.6%

3.33

1.253

8

7

Instils pride in me for being associated with him or her

6.0%

32.2%

14.8%

27.4%

19.6%

3.22

1.253

10

8

Discusses in specific terms who is responsible for achieving performance targets in the bank

19.9%

15.1%

15.1%

28.5

21.4%

3.16

1.437

12

9

Waits for things to go wrong in the bank before taking action

24.8%

15.8%

10.8%

25.3%

23.3%

3.07

1.528

15

10

Keeps track of all mistakes

22.3%

15.1%

11.7%

34.1%

16.8%

3.08

1.433

14

11

Avoids making decisions

18.4%

24.6%

10.6%

27.2%

19.2%

3.04

1.423

16

12

Gets me to look at a problem from different angles

10.8%

8.8%

10.2%

45.1%

25.1%

3.65

1.248

1

13

Helps me to develop my strengths

7.6%

20.5%

10.2%

36.1%

25.5%

3.51

1.277

5

14

Considers me as having different needs, abilities and aspirations from within the bank

4.7%

17.5%

22.9%

39.7%

15.3%

3.43

1.087

6

15

Suggests new ways of looking at how to complete assignments in the bank

3.5%

12.5%

26.8%

40.0%

17.1%

3.55

1.027

3

16

Emphasises the importance of having a collective sense of mission for the bank

8.0%

8.6%

22.5%

44.1%

16.8%

3.53

1.113

4

17

Expresses confidence that bank’s goals will be achieved

7.6%

12.5%

14.0%

44.7%

21.2%

3.59

1.173

2

Average

 

3.29

1.29

 

Source: Author’s fieldwork

Table 3 above displays the Nigerian bank employees’ perceptions of the leadership styles that the Nigerian banking industry currently employs and how they rated the different variable items. A ranking column was provided in the table to show how the variable items are ranked from highest to lowest, according to the responses from the Nigerian bank employees, using the mean values. Going by these mean values, the highest ranked variable item is “gets me to look at a problem from different angles”, with a mean score of 3.65, while the lowest ranked variable items is “seeks differing perspectives when solving problems in the bank”, with a mean score of 2.87. The variable item “gets me to look at a problem from different angles” is one of the items that measure transformational leadership style, while the item “seeks differing perspectives when solving problems in the bank” measures a transactional leadership style. This shows that the transformational leadership style of getting followers to interpret a problem from various perspectives is a common practice in Nigeria’s banking industry, and that the transactional leadership style of seeking differing perspectives when solving problems, is scarcely practised in the Nigerian banking industry.

Items labelled in orange colours are the ones that measure the transactional leadership style, while the ones in blue measure the transformational leadership style. Hence, items 1, 2, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10, 11 in table 3 above measure the transactional leadership style, while items 3, 6, 7, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 measure the transformational leadership style.

With regard to the eight items measuring the transactional leadership style in the Nigerian banking industry, item 1 with a moderately high mean score of 3.19 supports the perception that Nigerian bank employees receive assistance from their leaders in exchange for their efforts most of the time; item 2 with a high mean score of 3.29 is a reflection of the fact that quite a large number of Nigerian banking industry leaders do not interfere until problems become serious, while item 4 which confirms a moderately high mean score of 3.08 is an indication that quite a couple of leaders in the Nigerian banking industry were absent when needed to resolve issues at the bank. This shows a strong indication that quite a huge number of the Nigerian bank employee are exposed to some of the features of transactional leaders. Furthermore, the low mean score of 2.87 of item 5 is a reflection of the fact that leaders in the Nigerian banking industry do not seek divergent perspectives when they resolve problems in the bank, while item 8 with a moderately high mean score of 3.16 corroborates the fact that a lot of leaders in the bank specifically discuss who is accountable for realising the bank’s performance goals. Also, items 9, 10 and 11 which respectively show a moderately high mean score of 3.07, a moderately high mean score of 3.08, and a moderately high mean score of 3.04, also support the assertion that a lot of leaders in the Nigerian banking industry wait for things to go wrong first before they take any action, kept track of all mistakes, and avoid making decisions respectively. These also confirm the fact that the Nigerian bank employees are significantly exposed to the transactional leadership style.

In respect to the nine items that measure the transformational leadership style in the Nigerian banking industry, item 3 with a high mean score of 3.42 indicates that a lot of leaders in the Nigerian banking industry talk about important values and beliefs in the bank; item 6 with a high mean score of 3.33 further supports the assertion that leaders in the bank speak positively about the future of their employees, while item 7 with a high mean score of 3.22 shows that the bank leaders instil pride in their followers by being associated with them. These further indicate that a lot of the Nigerian bank employees are exposed to a transformational style of leadership. Furthermore, item 12 with a high mean score of 3.65 signifies that a lot of leaders in Nigerian banks get their followers to look at a difficult situation from different perspectives; item 13 with a high mean score of 3.51 further proves that bank leaders help their followers to develop their strengths, and item 14 with a high mean score of 3.43 points to the fact that leaders in Nigerian banks consider that their followers possess diverse needs, aptitudes and aspirations from one another within the bank. In addition, items 15, 16 and 17 with respectively high mean scores of 3.55, 3.53, and 3.59, support the fact that a lot of leaders in Nigerian banks propose different ways to execute assignments in the bank, emphasise the significance of all sharing a collective sense of mission assignment for the bank, and believe that the bank’s goals would be attained, respectively. These facts also indicate that quite a large number of the Nigerian bank employees are exposed to a transformational leadership style.

However, this information could describe the significant exposure that the Nigerian bank employees have experienced with the transactional and transformational leadership styles, but not necessarily indicating the resultant influence on workplace deviant behaviours.

Table 4: Summary of the custom table showing item responses, means and standard deviations of workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry.

 

 

No

 

 

Statements

Never (1)

Seldom (2)

Sometimes (3)

Often (4)

Always (5)

Mean

SD

Ranking

1

I have taken the bank’s property without permission.

12.5%

34.5%

3.5%

45.3%

4.3%

3.00

1.211

5

2

I have falsified a receipt to get reimbursed by the bank for more money than I spent on business expenses.

49.2%

32.0%

7.8%

10.8%

0.2%

1.81

0.992

10

3

I have taken an additional or longer break than is acceptable within the bank.

16.8%

16.8%

6.7%

51.0%

8.8%

3.18

1.292

3

4

I arrived at work late without permission.

29.8%

19.4%

8.0%

42.6%

0.2%

2.64

1.301

6

5

I litter in the banking environment.

37.8%

36.1%

2.4%

19.4%

4.3%

2.16

1.241

7

6

I intentionally worked slower than I should work in the bank.

6.7%

21.6%

7.8%

54.4%

9.5%

3.38

1.124

1

7

I discussed the bank’s confidential information with an unauthorised person.

53.6%

21.4%

12.1%

12.3%

0.6%

1.85

1.085

9

8

I used an illegal drug or consumed alcohol while working on the job.

49.3%

37.1%

1.5%

12.1%

0.0%

1.76

0.969

11

9

I dragged out work in the bank in order to receive overtime.

12.3%

23.5%

7.3%

43.4%

13.6%

3.23

1.287

2

10

I made an ethnic, religious or racial remark in the bank.

44.9%

18.6%

15.5%

21.0%

0.0%

2.13

1.197

8

11

I acted rudely towards someone at work.

18.2%

14.9%

8.0%

58.8%

0.0%

3.07

1.210

4

Average

 

2.55

1.17

 

Source: Author’s fieldwork

Table 4 above shows the Nigerian bank employees relative experience of displaying some form of workplace deviant behaviours, and how they have rated the different workplace deviant behaviour items. A ranking column is provided in the table to show how the variable items were ranked from highest to the lowest, according to responses from the Nigerian bank employees, using the mean values. In accordance with these mean values, the highest ranked variable item was “I intentionally worked slower than I should work in the bank”, with a mean score of 3.38, while the lowest ranked variable item was “I used an illegal drug and consumed alcohol while working on the job”, with a mean score of 1.76. This shows that bank employees who work intentionally slower than they should is a regular occurrence in Nigeria’s banking industry, while the use of an illegal drug or consuming alcohol while working, is a practice that is hardly ever engaged in by employees in the banking industry.

Inferential Statistics (Hypothesis testing)

Inferential statistics can be referred to as a statistical method, which makes inferences about people, centred on the features of the sample (Albrecht, 2006). Inferential statistics go beyond the description of specific observations and make inferences concerning the bigger population from which sample observations were taken (Babbie & Mouton, 2010).

Table 5: The relationship between the transformational leadership style, transactional leadership style, and workplace deviant behaviours.

 

TFLS

TALS

WDB

TFLS

Pearson Correlation

1

-.080

-.024

Sig. (2-tailed)

 

.064

.582

N

537

537

537

TALS

Pearson Correlation

-.080

1

-.439**

Sig. (2-tailed)

.064

 

.000

N

537

537

537

WDB

Pearson Correlation

-.024

-.439**

1

Sig. (2-tailed)

.582

.000

 

N

537

537

537

* Correlation is significant at the 0.05 level (2-tailed).

** Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).

Table 5 above indicated that there is no significant association between the transformational leadership style and the transactional leadership style (r = -.080; p>.05), and workplace deviant behaviours (r = -.024; p>.05) in the Nigerian banking industry. This result implies that transformational leadership is a constant leadership style, observable within the Nigerian banking industry, which does not have any significant relationship with the employees’ perception of the adoption of the said leadership style, and their involvement in workplace deviant behaviours.

Figure 2: Relationship model of the transformational leadership style, the transactional leadership style, and workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry.

Moreover, table 5 showed a significant moderate negative relationship between the transactional style of leadership and workplace deviant behaviours (r= -.439; p<.01) in the Nigerian banking industry. This result indicates that there is a significant relationship between the transactional leadership style and workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry, where the effect of the relationship is moderate. This result deduces that the more bank managers continue to embrace a transactional style of leadership, the lower the probability that bank employees will engage in deviant behaviours. Hence, the transactional leadership style is a constant leadership style, noticeable within the Nigerian banking industry, which has a significantly moderate negative relationship with deviant behaviours.

Table 6: Coefficients.

Coefficientsa

Model

Unstandardized Coefficients

Standardized Coefficients

t

Sig.

95.0% Confidence Interval for B

Collinearity Statistics

B

Std. Error

Beta

Lower Bound

Upper Bound

Tolerance

VIF

1

(Constant)

3.200

.180

 

17.752

.000

2.846

3.555

 

 

TFLS

-.062

.041

-.059

-1.525

.128

-.142

.018

.994

1.006

TALS

-.352

.031

-.444

-11.397

.000

-.412

-.291

.994

1.006

a. Dependent Variable: WDB

From table 6 above, the model shows that, out of the independent variables (the transformational leadership style and the transactional leadership style), the predictor (influencer) of variation in the dependent variable (workplace deviant behaviours), is the transactional leadership style (β= -.44). However, the transformational leadership style (β= -.059) does not significantly predict workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. Hence, the final model only consists the influence of transactional leadership style on workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry.

Table 7: Summary of the multiple regression table showing the values of the model.

                                                                       R2               β               B      Standard Error (SE)      Confidence Interval (CI) for 95% (B)

Model                                                         .245***

Transactional leadership style                                        -.444***   -.352          0.31                       -.412 / -.291

Note: Statistical Significance ***p<.005

Furthermore, the results show that the transactional leadership style as adopted by the leaders, managers, and management of the Nigerian banking industry significantly negatively predicts (influences) bank employees’ engagement in deviant behaviours. Hence, transactional leadership independently contributes 44% of variance or influence the variance or change in the deviant behaviours of the Nigerian bank employees. It could also indicate that if the management of the Nigerian banking industry increases the level of adopting the transactional leadership style by one standard deviation (SD), the deviant behaviours engaged in by their employees may likely to reduce by -.44 standard deviation units.

Figure 3: Model showing the influence of the predictor (the transactional leadership style) on the dependent variable (workplace deviant behaviours) in the Nigerian banking industry.

Discussion

Table 5 reveals the existence of a significant moderate negative relationship between the transactional leadership style and workplace deviant behaviours (r= -.439; p<.01) in the Nigerian banking industry. This result satisfies the second research objective which is to investigate the relationship between the leadership styles and workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry.

Furthermore, the results in table 5 indicate that, out of the two leadership styles (transformational and transactional), only the transactional leadership style (β= -.44) significantly negatively predicts workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. Hence, the result meets the first objective of the current paper which is to investigate the leadership styles that can predict workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry.

The second objective was accomplished by conducting a correlational analysis between leadership styles (transactional and transformational) and workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. Table 5 indicates that a significant relationship exists between the two transactional leadership style and workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry, where the effect of the relationship is moderate. This result implies that the more bank management continues to embrace a transactional style of leadership, the lower the probability that bank employees will indulge in deviant behaviours.

The findings of the present paper support the assertion of the path-goal theory which states that followers perceive their leaders’ behaviours as acceptable, just when they see them as useful in achieving future job satisfaction; and that leaders’ behaviours are significant motivation for employees, which eventually reduces deviant behaviours; as well as the leader-member exchange theory, which states that positive work influences and reductions in deviant workplace behaviours are achieved by developing an exceptional quality of relationship with leaders. Therefore, the path-goal theory and the leader-member exchange theory could be used to efficiently address the issue of workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. Hence, this theoretical framework is revealed in figure 4 below.

Figure 4: The theoretical framework of reducing workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry.

Practical implications

This first finding shows that, employees in the Nigerian banking industry would exhibit fewer deviant behaviours if their leaders increasingly embraced the transactional leadership style, and would exhibit more deviant behaviours in proportion to a decrease in the adoption of the transactional leadership style. This result is in line with the position of previous researchers, who indicated a negative relationship between the transactional leadership style and workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry (Nwokocha & Iheriohanma, 2015). This result, however is not constant with the position of other earlier scholars who argue that the relationship between the transactional leadership style and workplace deviant behaviours is positive, stating that transactional leaders seem to be low on ethical rigour, while their laxity is misconstrued by followers as tacit approval to engage in dubious and unethical practices. As mentioned earlier, the leader-member exchange theory, as explained in the literature review, is supported, because it further highlights that the transactional leadership style reduces workplace deviant behaviours. Hence, the transactional leadership style is established as a constant leadership style, observable within the Nigerian banking industry, which significantly has a negative relationship with employees’ engagement in workplace deviant behaviours.

Furthermore, the second finding shows that the transactional leadership style significantly negatively predicts workplace deviant behaviours, indicating that that the level at which the Nigerian bank employees would engage in workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry would increase by 44%, if their leaders reduced the adoption of a transactional leadership style by one standard deviation. Workplace deviant behaviours will also decrease by 44% if their leaders’ level of adopting a transactional leadership style increases by one standard deviation. Therefore, the more bank management adopts a transactional leadership style, the less chances that their followers will engage in workplace deviant behaviours, and vice versa. This infers that adopting a transactional leadership style has a moderating effect on workplace deviant behaviours, and it significantly predicts employees’ engagement in workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigeria’s banking industry. This fact corroborates the assertion of previous researchers who posit that the transactional leadership style significantly reduces deviant behaviours among employees at some Nigerian banks (Obiwuru et al., 2011).

Implication for disciplinary actions in the Nigerian banking industry

As stated earlier, a good measure of transactional leadership relationship between an employer and employee in a given organisation will reduce the exhibition in workplace deviant behaviours. By implication, this will reduce disciplinary actions in an organisation, as employees become more satisfied with their job conditions and will be deterred from engaging in deviant behaviours, which could result in disciplinary action. Disciplinary action is meant to stop or improve poor performance or handle inappropriate behaviours. Employers normally implement discipline progressively, based on the type and regularity of a policy defilement. As a result, managers in Nigeria’s banking industry are charged to pronounce the unceasing provision of worthy leader-member exchange relationships with their followers, whilst providing them with sufficient on-the-job support, guidance and vital help to ensure that there is social reciprocity when they discharge their duties in exchange for suitable rewards, as these will guarantee organisational commitment, follower satisfaction, and reduced deviant workplace behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry.

Implication for trade union actions in the Nigerian banking industry

In responding to an exchange relationship that employees perceive as being unfair, via their labour unions, employees engage in certain behaviours to show their employers their dissatisfaction with any work-related issues. There are numerous tactics that the trade unions can embark on to force the employer to the negation table. Such tactics include: go slow, removal of goodwill, striking rigidly by performing only in tasks that appear in employees’ job descriptions, going on strike and refusing to work overtime. All of these actions are unwelcome and reduce the company’s profitability, as well as its ability to achieve orders. In contrast, employees may also engage in positive behaviour to attract the appropriate rewards and good relations with their employers such as citizenship behaviours, job commitments, good interpersonal relationships between labour unions and employers, and full adherence to job policies. As mentioned earlier, a positive link occurs between the transactional leadership style and organisational commitment, follower satisfaction, reduced work stress and decreases in deviant behaviours. Hence, leaders in Nigeria’s banking industry should embrace a transactional leadership style, which reduces employees’ engagement in workplace deviant behaviours.

Limitation

The present investigation encountered a few limitations. These should be well-considered when interpreting and generalising the study’s findings. For example, the results cannot be generalised to other sectors in Nigeria, because the investigation was conducted only with employees within Nigeria’s banking industry. It was also difficult to extract information from the Nigerian bankers concerning their level of engagement in workplace deviant behaviours. Despite all the efforts and the medium used to extract this information, it is likely that a few measures taken were successful to an extent. The same applies to the online survey that was conducted compared to the face-to-face questionnaire distribution, as online surveys have their own numerous disadvantages. Hence, respondents might have been unfair in responding to the questionnaires (both online and face-to-face) as a result of their understanding of the purpose of the present investigation. Furthermore, another restriction in the present investigation was that a lot of the respondents (bank employees) were reluctant to provide their e-mail addresses to administer the online questionnaire, which consequently limited the number of responses and valid questionnaires that were retrieved. Besides, none of the demographic variables were investigated as likely moderators that influence workplace deviant behaviours in Nigeria’s banking industry. Another limitation is that the study adopted only a quantitative approach, and not a mixed method approach which could have generated results through the triangulation of data, and which could also have shed more light on the phenomenon under study.

Conclusion and recommendations

In summary, this article investigated the influence of leadership styles on workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. Based on the above, the current researchers concludes that the transactional leadership style negatively predicts workplace deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. In response to the current findings, the present investigator has postulated certain recommendations, which, if taken into consideration, could help to reduce the likelihood of workplace deviant behaviours and improve employment relations in the Nigerian banking industry, in particular, and other industries, in general.

There is a need to adopt a good measure of the transactional leadership style within the Nigerian banking industry

Whenever the bank industry’s management aptly identifies employees’ aspirations and needs and inspire them on how to achieve these needs in exchange for their performances, it reduces the prospect of bank employees engaging in deviant workplace behaviours. However, the case is not the same when management does not apply a good measure of transactional leadership with bank employees; in such instances they tend to react with a number of deviant behaviours that they direct towards the industry. Results of the current investigation revealed that the transactional leadership style significantly reduces the likelihood of employees engaging in workplace deviant behaviour in the Nigerian banking industry. So, it is suggested that bank respective management in the Nigerian banking industry aptly and consistently adopt a transactional leadership style, as it significantly reduces employees’ engagement in workplace deviant behaviours and improves employment relations in the Nigerian banking industry.

 A need to improve communication and interpersonal relationships

As mentioned earlier, it is pertinent that leaders and managers should lead by using reciprocal communication strategies, which involve two-way communication such as effective listening, facilitating and supportive behaviours (for instance, socio-emotional support), as this ensures clear goals and enhances respectable employer-employee relationships. Good interpersonal relations between employers and employees build trust and respect (which form part of the facets of the transactional leadership style), and mutual reliance within an organisation, and consequently reduces the likelihood of engaging in deviant workplace behaviours. Hence, this ensures supportive behaviours, trust and respect between the leaders and the bank employees, which leads to a reduction in deviant behaviours, thereby enhancing employment relations in the Nigerian banking industry. Consequently, it is imperative for management staff in the Nigerian banking industry to adopt effective communication behaviours that express an appealing vision, communicate high expectations, and express hopefulness and assurance to bank employees by modelling behaviours that complement the vision, manage employees’ impressions of themselves, whilst empowering them. Leaders in the banking industry are encouraged to make every effort to sustain good interpersonal relations with their employees.

It is imperative to create equitable treatment in a leader-follower relationship

As aforementioned, a good measure of the transactional leadership style, characterised by equitable treatment, leads to reduced levels of employees resorting to deviant behaviours in the Nigerian banking industry. Hence, the employer-employee relationship in the Nigerian banking industry should be one of mutual reliance, whereby employers depend on employees to discharge their duties, and where employees anticipate rewards for performing their job. Therefore, it is recommended that leaders in the Nigerian banking industry should constantly ensure successful social reciprocity with regard to discharging their duties in exchange for suitable rewards. They should ensure that the employer-employee relationship is one of mutual interest, where the employee expects to be compensated for performing his or her job, whilst the employer trusts the employee to perform his or her job effectively.




     
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