Date of Conferral



Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.)




Robert Miller


When employees become dissatisfied at an organization, they may develop negative behaviors that can impede profits and productivity. The purpose of this single case study was to explore what strategies are essential for organizational leaders to improve workplace performance. Maslow's hierarchy of needs served as the conceptual framework for this study. Data collection involved face-to-face, semistructured interviews of 20 managers, floor employees, and clerical staff from a business organization in Southwest Georgia. Participant selection was based on employees' tenure of at least 1 year of experience within the organization. Interviews were transcribed and then coded for common patterns and themes. Five themes emerged: (a) workplace environment, focusing on the level of flexibility given to employees in the organization; (b) feedback sources in organizations, centering on measurable standards such as written evaluations and other resources provided to employees; (c) management relationships, focusing on managers' influence on the performance of employees; (d) barriers in the workplace, examining internal and external sources that impede performance; and (e) recruitment/promotion strategies, centering on the organization's compensation incentives. Study outcomes suggest that organizational leaders may increase employee work performance by enhancing strategies that provide a positive assortment of abilities, motivational tools, and opportunities. In addition, these findings suggest that collaborative decision making between management and employees has a positive relationship with work attitudes and the engagement of employees. Leaders in organizations may apply these findings to develop an enriched workplace environment, one that could improve employee retention rates and organizational commitment.