Date of Conferral



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


Business Administration


Irene A. Williams


When unplanned absences occur, employers incur lost productivity and additional costs. In the United States, missed work because of employee absence costs organizations about $202 billion dollars annually. Grounded in Burn’s transformational leadership theory, the purpose of this qualitative single case study was to explore effective strategies public works department leaders use to reduce absenteeism in the workplace. The participants included 9 leaders who worked in a chosen department in the local government who successfully reduced absenteeism in the workplace. The data collection process included conducting semistructured interviews and reviewing organizational documents. The data were analyzed using a thematic analysis process, and three themes emerged to include collaboration and employee engagement, communication, and organizational culture. A key recommendation is to restructure communications about absenteeism policies while engaging employees in essential aspects of the organization. The implication for positive social change includes the potential to decrease the local government’s related costs from employee absenteeism, thereby increasing resources for supporting social initiatives, individuals, and communities.