Date of Conferral



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




Dorothy Hanson


In the higher education industry, employee engagement is crucial to the survival of organizations because engaged employees increase profits, productivity, and sustainability. The purpose of this single case study was to explore leadership strategies that leaders of higher education organizations used to promote employee engagement. Expectancy theory was the conceptual framework for this study. Four leaders of a higher education organization in the southeastern United States were purposefully selected for the study based upon their experience implementing effective leadership strategies to promote employee engagement. Data were collected through face-to-face semistructured interviews, direct observation, and review of publicly available organizational documents. Data were transcribed and coded for common patterns and themes, then member-checked to reinforce the validity of the interpretations. Three themes emerged from the data analysis: engaging through communication, developing engagement strategies, and engaging through recognition and rewards. The findings from this study might contribute to social change by providing higher education leaders with strategies to promote a sustainable workforce, competitive edge, and increase productivity and profitability.