Strategic Leadership Practices and Performance of Tea Companies in Nandi County, Kenya
Chikamai, Maureen Mutsachi
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In Kenya, there is evident declining results in the Tea sector in regard to sector competitors prices from competing countries, commitment of workers and declarations of bonuses. On the same note, although tea earns the country the second largest share of export, there has been inefficiency in production and insufficient demand for sale volume of tea over the last decade. The study aimed to determine the influence of strategic leadership practices on Tea campanies performance in Nandi County, Kenya. The study’s specific objectives were; to evaluate the effect of strategic direction, competencies in leadership, organisational control and ethical issues on tea companies performance in Nandi county, Kenya. Resource based view theory, strategic leadership theory, the upper echelosn theory and trait leadership theory were used to explain the interrelationship between variables. Empirical literature reviewed scholarly studies on strategic leadership and its relationship with organizational performance. Descriptive research methodology was used. The unit of analysis were the management staff at the 9 tea organisations in Nandi County who total to 121. The survey adopted a census study of all 121 respondents for the population was small and manageable. Semi structured questionnaire through the self administration method was used to collect data from the primary sources. Both content and construct validity were determined. On the other hand, contruct validity was achieved by use of factor analysis where factor loadings for all the items in the questionnaire were determined. Reliability test was done through Alpha test. Descriptive statistics were generated and represented by percentages, frequencies, standard deviation and mean. Analysis of data was performed with the aid of SPSS and presented through charts, graphs and tables. Inferential statistics included correlation and regression analysis which tested the association between independent and dependent variables. The research results add value to the areas of strategic leadership and tea sector performance. The study found that most of the tea factories management uses guiding vision statement, mission statements, firms objectives and tea factory’s guiding principles to guide their strategic direction. The study found that to a great extent training and development of employees, career development, performance appraisal, rewards and compensation greatly affected tea factories performance. Ethical principles as a practice of strategic leadership were highly practiced. In addition, the findings further presented that codes of conduct and core values were greatly followed by the tea factory administration. Further, the findings indicated that implementation of control within the factories was given more consideration. The research study concluded strategic direction, leadership competencies, ethical practices and organizational control significantly and positively affects performance of Tea factories. The study recommended that the management of Tea factories should focus on developing an organization's path through the creation of a vision, purpose, and core values through strategic leadership.