Why the research article selected is a quantitative study
The selected research article is a quantitative study because questionnaires were used to collect data and statistical methods [Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS)] were used in data analysis. These attributes underline a quantitative study.
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Professor Heather K. S. Laschinger, Carol A. Wong, and Ashley L. Grau conducted this research study. The title they used for the study is “The influence of authentic leadership on newly graduated nurses’ experiences of workplace bullying, burnout, and retention outcomes: A cross-sectional study” and it was published in the International Journal of Nursing Studies in 2012.
Research Problem and purpose
The authors sought to “to test a model linking authentic leadership to newly graduated nurses’ experiences of workplace bullying and burnout, and subsequently, job satisfaction and intentions to leave their jobs” (Laschinger, Wong, & Grau, 2012, p. 1266).
The authors knew that in most cases, newly graduated nurses experience high rates of burnout, which leads to increased turnover rates in the first year of work. Besides, the authors understood that bullying in the workplace affected the smooth transition of newly graduated nurses into the workforce. The available literature pointed to the increasing trend of bullying in the workplace. Newly graduated nurses are highly vulnerable to any form of negative behavior in the workplace especially bullying.
Bullying interferes with the proper execution of duties as it affects one’s mental and physical health. When a nurse is not functioning optimally, the patient outcomes will be affected negatively. Besides, if a newly graduated nurse is not getting job satisfaction due to poor patient outcomes, s/he is likely to quit, which leads to high turnover rates. However, the authors did not know the relationship between authentic leadership and cases of bullying, burnout, and retention outcomes amongst newly graduated nurses.
Research objectives, questions, and hypothesis
This study sought to establish how authentic leadership styles affect work experiences amongst newly graduated nurses in terms of bullying, burnout, and retention outcomes. The leadership style in place determines the nature of experiences that workers will have as they execute their duties. Authentic leadership is assumed to have positive work outcomes, but this information was lacking in the nursing practice, and thus, the authors sought to establish if such claims are true by choosing three variables, viz. bullying, burnout, and retention outcomes. The authors hypothesized that lower levels of workplace bullying would be associated with higher levels of authentic leadership. Besides, bullying was hypothesized to have a direct impact on job satisfaction, which leads to burnout and turnover rates in the workplace.
The independent variable in this study is authentic leadership. On the other side, the dependent variables are bullying, burnout, and retention outcomes.
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The research design used in this study is experimental. The authors employed a cross-sectional survey design. In this study, standardized questionnaires were sent to the participants through the mail. The responses were analyzed using SPSS.
The study population included 907 newly graduated nurses working in acute care hospitals in Ontario, Canada. For one to be included in the study, s/he needed to have less than 2 years of working experience in an acute care hospital. Ultimately, the researchers had a final sample of 342 nurses for the study. Out of the 907, 365 responded. However, 23 respondents had worked outside acute care, and thus they were excluded from the study leaving a population sample of 342 respondents.
The authors used standardized questionnaires to collect data. The Authentic Leadership Questionnaire (ALQ) was used to measure how the participants perceived their managers’ authentic leadership attributes. The Negative Acts Questionnaire-Revised was used to measure the different aspects of bullying in the workplace. Besides, the Maslach Burnout Inventory-General Survey (MBI-GS) was used in the measurement of the participants’ burnout, while the job satisfaction scale and turnover intentions scale were used to assess retention outcomes.
The cross-sectional study design used in this study presents some limitations that could affect the credibility of the study. For example, changes in leadership style within the working period could not be tracked. Besides, when an individual completes all the measures, the risk of common method variance arises. Moreover, mail surveys normally have a low response rate, which is evident in this study as a paltry 38% of the initial 907 selected participants responded. Finally, other factors that can contribute to retention outcomes like personal attributes were not considered in this study.
The study’s results underscore the importance of having authentic leadership in place in the acute care workplace. The authors concluded that authentic leadership creates a healthy work environment, which in turn discourages incidences of bullying and burnout in the workplace. Bullying and burnout may lead to an increased turnover rate of newly graduated nurses. Therefore, managers should be supported to create authentic leadership as a way of eliminating bullying and burnouts to ensure high retention rates of newly graduated nurses. This move sustains the much-needed workforce especially during this time when the nursing practice is facing a severe shortage of employees.
Laschinger, H. K. S., Wong, C. A., & Grau, A. L. (2012). The influence of authentic leadership on newly graduated nurses’ experiences of workplace bullying, burnout, and retention outcomes: A cross-sectional study. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 49, 1266-76.