Advertisement

Journal of Occupational Rehabilitation

, Volume 23, Issue 3, pp 428–437 | Cite as

Leadership Effectiveness: A Supervisor’s Approach to Manage Return to Work

  • J. A. H. Schreuder
  • J. W. Groothoff
  • D. Jongsma
  • N. F. van Zweeden
  • J. J. L. van der Klink
  • C. A. M. Roelen
Article

Abstract

Purpose To investigate adaptive leadership in relation to personnel sickness absence (SA). In situational leadership, supervisors are effective if they adapt their leadership style appropriately to a given situation. Methods A managerial reorganization in a Dutch hospital with reassignment of supervisors provided the opportunity to compare SA in the same wards while under the leadership of different supervisors. Leadership effectiveness was measured with the Leader Effectiveness and Adaptability Description (LEAD). Personnel SA was retrieved from employer’s records and cumulated at the individual level, distinguishing between short-term (1–7 day) and long-term (>7 days) SA. Cumulated SA days and mean SA lengths before and after managerial reorganization were compared at the individual level by using non-parametric paired statistical analyses. Employer’s costs to compensate sick-listed employees’ salaries before and after reorganization were cumulated and compared at ward level by using non-parametric statistics. Results 6 wards (N = 403) retained the same supervisor, 6 wards (N = 504) were assigned more effective supervisors, and 4 wards (N = 184) got less effective supervisors than the ones before reorganization. Cumulated short-term SA days and lengths did not change with leadership effectiveness. Employees who got more effective supervisors had fewer long-term SA days and shorter long-term SA lengths than before reorganization. More effective supervisors saved an average of 21,368 Euros per ward, particularly due to less long-term SA. Conclusions Long-term SA was shorter after employees got more effective supervisors. Adaptive supervisors can facilitate return to work and save SA costs by providing the right type of support to sick-listed employees.

Keywords

Absenteeism Employer Healthcare Management Sick leave Situational leadership 

References

  1. 1.
    Rankin I. Managing long-term sickness absence: the 2009 IRS survey. IRS Employ Rev. 2009;992:1–18.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
  3. 3.
    Managing sickness absence and return to work. http://www.hse.gov.uk/sicknessabsence/ (2011). Accessed 28 Sep 2012.
  4. 4.
    Janssen N, van den Heuvel WP, Beurskens AJ, Nijhuis FJ, Schröer CA, van Eijk JT. The demand–control–support model as predictor of return to work. Int J Rehabil Res. 2003;26(1):1–9.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Feuerstein M, Berkowitz SM, Haufler AJ, Lopez MS, Huang GD. Working with low back pain: workplace and individual psychosocial determinants of limited duty and lost time. Am J Ind Med. 2001;40(6):627–38.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Kuoppala J, Lamminpaa A, Liira J, Vainio H. Leadership, job well-being, and health effects: a systematic review and a meta-analysis. J Occup Environ Med. 2008;50(8):904–15.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Väänänen A, Toppinen-Tanner S, Kalimo R, Mutanen P, Vahtera J, Peiro JM. Job characteristics, physical and psychological symptoms, and social support as antecedents of sickness absence among men and women in the private industrial sector. Soc Sci Med. 2003;57(5):807–24.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Nielsen ML, Rugulies R, Christensen KB, Smith-Hansen L, Kristensen TS. Psychosocial work environment predictors of short and long spells of registered sickness absence during a 2-year follow-up. J Occup Environ Med. 2006;48(6):591–8.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Labriola M, Christensen KB, Lund T, Nielsen ML, Diderichsen F. Multilevel analysis of workplace and individual risk factors for long-term sickness absence. J Occup Environ Med. 2006;48(9):923–9.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Krause N, Dasinger LK, Deegan LJ, Rudolph L, Brand RJ. Psychosocial job factors and return-to-work after compensated low back injury: a disability phase-specific analysis. Am J Ind Med 40(4):374–92.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Post M, Krol B, Groothoff JW. Work-related determinants of return to work of employees on long-term sickness absence. Disabil Rehabil. 2005;27(9):481–8.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Aas RW, Ellingsen KL, Lindøe P, Möller A. Leadership qualities in the return to work process: a content analysis. J Occup Rehabil. 2008;18(4):335–46.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Bass BM, Bass R. Handbook of leadership: theory, research, and application. New York: Free Press; 2008.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Vroom VH, Yago AG. The role of situation in leadership. Am Psychol. 2007;62(1):17–24.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Cubero CG. Situational leadership and persons with disabilities. Work. 2007;29(4):351–6.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Hersey P, Blanchard KH. Management of organizational behavior, utilizing human resources. NJ: Prentice Hall; 1977.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Blanchard KH. Leading at a higher level. Upper Saddle River: Prentice Hall; 2007.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Schreuder JA, Roelen CA, van Zweeden NF, Jongsma D, van der Klink JJ, Groothoff JW. Leadership styles of nurse managers and registered sickness absence among their nursing staff. Health Care Manag Rev. 2011;36(1):58–66.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Schreuder JA, Roelen CA, van Zweeden NF, Jongsma D, van der Klink JJ, Groothoff JW. Leadership effectiveness and recorded sickness absence among nursing staff: a cross-sectional pilot study. J Nurs Manag. 2011;19(5):585–95.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Young AE, Roessler RT, Wasiak R, McPherson KM, van Poppel MN, Anema JR. A developmental conceptualization of return to work. J Occup Rehabil. 2005;15(4):557–68.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Franche RL, Corbière M, Lee H, Breslin FC, Hepburn CG. Readiness for return-to-work (RRTW) scale: development and validation of a self-report staging scale in lost-time claimants with musculoskeletal disorders. J Occup Rehabil. 2007;17(3):450–72.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Allebeck P, Mastekaasa A. Causes of sickness absence: research approaches and explanatory models. Scand J Public Health. 2004;32(suppl 63):36–43.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Steers RM, Rhodes SR. Knowledge and speculation about absenteeism: new approaches to understanding, measuring, and managing employee absence. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass; 1984.Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Fichman M. A theoretical approach to understanding employee absence. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass; 1984.Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Johansson G, Lundberg I. Adjustment latitude and attendance requirements as determinants of sickness absence or attendance: empirical tests of the illness flexibility model. Soc Sci Med. 2004;58(10):1857–68.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Kristensen TS. Sickness absence and work strain among Danish slaughterhouse workers: an analysis of absence from work regarded as coping behaviour. Soc Sci Med. 1991;32(1):15–27.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Kohler S, Matthieu J. Individual characteristics, work perceptions, and affective reactions influences on differentiated sickness absence criteria. J Organ Behav. 1993;14(6):515–30.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Hackett RD, Bycio P. An evaluation of employee absenteeism as coping mechanism among hospital nurses. J Occup Organ Psychol. 1996;69(4):327–38.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Petrie KJ, Weinman JA. Perceptions of health and illness: current research and applications. Amsterdam: Harwood Academic Publishers; 1997.Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Henderson M, Glozier N, Holland Elliot K. Long term sickness absence. BMJ. 2005;330(7495):802–3.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Aviolo BJ, Walumbwa FO, Weber TJ. Leadership: current theories, research, and future directions. Annu Rev Psychol. 2009;60:421–49.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
  33. 33.
    Johnson K, d’Argenio C. Management training effects on nurse manager leadership behaviour. Nurs Econ. 1991;9(4):249–54.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
  35. 35.
    Johansen B. Situational leadership: a review of the research. Hum Res Dev Quart. 1990;1(1):73–85.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    Munir F, Yarker J, Hicks B, Donaldson-Feilder E. Returning employees back to work: developing a measure for supervisors to support return to work (SSRW). J Occup Rehabil. 2012;22(2):196–208.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. 37.
    Nieuwenhuijsen K, Verbeek JH, de Boer AG, Blonk RW, van Dijk FJ. Supervisory behaviour as a predictor of return to work in employees absent from work duet o mental health problems. Occup Environ Med. 2004;61(10):57–63.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    Nordqvist C, Holmqvist C, Alexanderson K. Views of laypersons on the role employers play in return to work when sick-listed. J Occup Rehabil. 2003;13(1):11–20.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. 39.
    Deelstra JT. The downside of social support. About the negative effects of social support at work. Utrecht: University Press; 2003.Google Scholar
  40. 40.
    Ferrie JE, Kivimäki M, Head J, Shipley MJ, Vahtera J, Marmot MG. A comparison of self-reported sickness absence with absences recorded in employers’ registers: evidence from the Whitehall II study. Occup Environ Med. 2005;62(2):74–9.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. 41.
    Grøvle L, Haugen AJ, Keller A, Natvig B, Brox JI, Grotle M. Poor agreement found between self-report and a public registry on duration of sickness absence. J Clin Epidemiol. 2012;65(2):212–8.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. 42.
    Lueder D. Don’t be mislead by LEAD. J Appl Behav Sci. 1985;21(2):143–51.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. 43.
    Franche RL, Krause N. Readiness for return to work following injury or illness: conceptualizing the interpersonal impact of health care, workplace, and insurance factors. J Occup Rehabil. 2002;12(4):233–56.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. 44.
    Dellve L, Skagert K, Vilhelmsson R. Leadership in workplace health promotion projects: 1-and 2-year effects on long-term work attendance. Eur J Public Health. 2007;17(5):471–6.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. 45.
    Kuoppala J, Lamminpää A, Husman P. Work health promotion, job well-being, and sickness absences: a systematic review and meta-analysis. J Occup Environ Med. 2008;50(11):1216–27.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. 46.
    Bambra C, Gibson M, Sowden AJ, Wright K, Whitehead M, Petticrew M. Working for health? Evidence from systematic reviews on the effects on health and health inequalities of organisational changes to the psychosocial work environment. Prev Med. 2009;48(5):454–61.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. 47.
    Noyes B. Midlevel management education. J Nurs Admin. 2002;32:25–6.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. 48.
    Tourangeau A. Building nurse leader capacity. J Nurs Admin. 2003;33(12):624–6.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. 49.
    Sherman RO, Eggenberger T, Bishop M, Karden R. Development of a leadership competency model. J Nurs Admin. 2007;37(1):85–94.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. 50.
    Mineyama S, Tsutsumi A, Takao S, Nishiuchi K, Kawakami N. Superivors’ attitudes and skills for active listening with regard to working conditions and psychological stress reactions among subordinate workers. J Occup Health. 2007;49(1):81–7.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. A. H. Schreuder
    • 1
    • 2
  • J. W. Groothoff
    • 1
  • D. Jongsma
    • 2
  • N. F. van Zweeden
    • 2
  • J. J. L. van der Klink
    • 1
  • C. A. M. Roelen
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Health Sciences, University Medical Centre GroningenUniversity of GroningenGroningenThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Nij Smellinghe HospitalDrachtenThe Netherlands

Personalised recommendations