Scielo RSS <![CDATA[SA Journal of Industrial Psychology]]> vol. 39 num. 1 lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> <![CDATA[<b>Advancing research in industrial and organisational psychology - A brief overview of 2013</b>]]> <![CDATA[<b>Agency relations and managed performance in public universities in Uganda</b>]]> ORIENTATION: This article focused on the need for improved employer-employee relationships in order for public universities in Uganda to achieve their intended objectives. RESEARCH PURPOSE: The purpose of this article was to review the need for appropriate employer-employee relationships that will ensure quality services and service delivery in public universities in Uganda. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: The researchers set out to examine why managers of public universities in Uganda were continuously paying less attention to the needs of the employees. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: A descriptive research design was employed and 12 respondents, purposively selected from 4 public universities, were interviewed. Data were recorded, transcribed and analysed using Nvivo software. This article is based on the perspective of agency theory, and discussed the contractual relationship between management and employees. The agency theory was deemed necessary because of its contribution to organisational literature. MAIN FINDINGS: There is a need to create and nurture a collegial working climate that promotes quality interactions through information sharing. This results in creating and retaining motivated and committed employees, and also helps to overcome the paradox of balancing the high demand for university education whilst offering quality services. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: Managers have to continuously monitor and accommodate employee needs and demands. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: The potential value of the paper is its function as a guide for public universities to have visionary managers that will introduce new approaches to managing public universities in a competitive global environment. <![CDATA[<b>Investigating the reversed causality of engagement and burnout in job demands-resources theory</b>]]> ORIENTATION: Reversed causality is an area that has not commanded major attention within the South African context, specifically pertaining to engagement, burnout and job demands-resources. Therefore, this necessitated an investigation to elucidate the potential effects. RESEARCH PURPOSE: To investigate the reversed causal hypotheses of burnout and engagement in job demands-resources theory over time. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: Organisations and researchers should be made aware of the effects that burnout and engagement could have over time on resources and demands. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: A longitudinal design was employed. The availability sample (n = 593) included participants from different demographic backgrounds. A survey was used to measure all constructs at both points in time. Structural equation modelling techniques were implemented with a categorical estimator to investigate the proposed hypotheses. MAIN FINDINGS: Burnout was found to have a significant negative longitudinal relationship with colleague support and supervisor support, whilst the negative relationship with supervisor support over time was more prominent. Engagement showed only one significant but small, negative relationship with supervisor support over time. All other relationships were statistically non-significant. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: This study makes organisations aware of the relationship between burnout and relationships at work over time. Proactive measures to promote relationships at work, specifically supervisor support, should be considered in addition to combatting burnout itself and promoting engagement. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: This study provides insights and information on reversed causality, namely, the effects that engagement and burnout can have over time. <![CDATA[<b>Biographical and demographical variables as moderators in the prediction of turnover intentions</b>]]> ORIENTATION: The aim of the study was to explore the possible moderation effects of biographical and demographical variables on a prediction model of turnover intention (TI). RESEARCH PURPOSE: The main purpose of the study was to determine how biographical and demographical variables have an impact on predictors of turnover intentions. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: Twenty-first century organisations face significant challenges in the management of talent and human capital. One in particular is voluntary employee turnover and the lack of appropriate business models to track this process. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH, AND METHOD: A secondary data analysis (SDA) was performed in a quantitative research tradition on the cross-sectional survey sample (n = 2429). Data were collected from a large South African Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) sector company (N = 23 134). MAIN FINDINGS: The results of the study confirmed significant moderation effects regarding race, age, and marital status in the prediction equations of TIs. PRACTICAL AND MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: Practical implications of the study suggested increased understanding of workforce diversity effects within the human resource (HR) value chain, with resultant evidence-based, employee retention strategies and interventions. Issues concerning talent management could also be addressed. CONTRIBUTION AND VALUE-ADD: The study described in this article took Industrial/Organisational (I/O) psychological concepts and linked them in unique combinations to establish better predictive validity of a more comprehensive turnover intentions model. <![CDATA[<b>Employability attributes and personality preferences of postgraduate business management students</b>]]> ORIENTATION: The demand for sustained employability and a proactive career agency has led to a renewed interest in the dispositional and psychological attributes of students and employees - like their employability attributes and personality preferences - because these relate to the proactive management of their career development in a changing employment world. RESEARCH PURPOSE: The purpose of the study was to determine the relationship between employees' employability attributes (as the Employability Attributes Scale measures them) and their personality preferences (as the Myers-Briggs Type indicator, Form M, measures them). MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: There seems to be a paucity of information about how employees' personality preferences relate to their employability attributes in South Africa's multicultural organisational context. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: The authors conducted a quantitative survey. It involved a non-probability sample of 304 early career adults enrolled for an Honour's degree in business management in an open distance learning higher education institution. They used correlational statistics and multiple regression analyses to analyse the data. MAIN FINDINGS: The authors observed a number of significant relationships between the participants' personality preferences and their employability attributes. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: Career counsellors and human resource practitioners need to recognise how employees' personality preferences influence their employability attributes in the management of their career development and employability. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE ADD: The findings add to the existing career literature on the career meta-competencies that influence employees' employability. They also provide valuable information that organisations can use for career development support and counselling practices in the contemporary world of work. <![CDATA[<b>Perceived organisational support for strengths use: The factorial validity and reliability of a new scale in the banking industry</b>]]> ORIENTATION: The perceived organisational support for strength use (POSSU) scale determines the extent to which employees perceive that their organisations support them to use their strengths in the workplace. RESEARCH PURPOSE: The purpose was to determine the validity and reliability of the new POSSU scale. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: There are instruments and studies that aim to identify and describe individual strengths. However, no instruments measure whether employees perceive that their organisations use their strengths in the workplace. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: The authors used a cross-sectional field survey approach and an availability sample of employees (N = 165) who worked in the banking sector. They used exploratory factor analysis to test the factorial validity and to establish whether POSSU is an independent job resource. They performed regression analyses to examine whether POSSU is a significant predictor of outcomes. MAIN FINDINGS: The findings indicated a clear one-factor model with strong item loadings (α = .97). When the authors included other resources, they identified a five-factor model, where all the items loaded onto the supposed factors. POSSU was a significant predictor of burnout and engagement after controlling for job resources and a deficiency-based approach. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: A valid and reliable POSSU scale could lead to increased awareness about the use of employees' strengths in organisations and help to determine their influence and value. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: This study contributes to the limited research available in South Africa on the measurement of whether employees perceive that their organisations use their (the employees') strengths. <![CDATA[<b>Employee perceptions of risks and rewards in terms of corporate entrepreneurship participation</b>]]> ORIENTATION: Early studies recognise how important corporate entrepreneurship (CE) is to achieving sustainable competitive advantage. RESEARCH PURPOSE: With the scope of CE widening, organisations that lack prior entrepreneurial recognition are adopting CE in order to survive and succeed in increasingly competitive and financially constrained environments. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: By using conjoint analysis, the study is able to determine empirically which criteria organisations use, when they decide to participate in CE activities, are significant. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: The authors used conjoint analysis. It simulates real life situations where it presents and tests various scenarios in terms of combinations of attributes and levels of intensity that influence decisions to participate in CE. MAIN FINDINGS: The results show that the most important attribute that influences the decision to participate in CE is the probability of venture success. Financial reward follows closely. As expected, job risk, pay risk and exerted effort are deterrents to CE participation. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: The study provides guidance to managers and leaders interested in motivating their employees to undertake CE activities. The results give direction to employees by offering them different scenarios of incentives and commensurate risks when they participate in CE. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: This is one of the first studies to test empirically the likelihood of CE participation in terms of conjoint analysis. It provides managers with a dashboard of possible attributes, according to which they can devise optimal incentive strategies. <![CDATA[<b>The relationship between employee satisfaction and organisational performance: Evidence from a South African government department</b>]]> ORIENTATION: There appears to be a dearth of literature that addresses the relationship between employee satisfaction and organisational performance in South African public organisations. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: This study attempted to contribute to the discourse on the influence of human resources to organisational performance. RESEARCH PURPOSE: The aim of this study was to analyse the relationship between employee satisfaction and organisational performance in a public sector organisation. RESEARCH DESIGN: A three-section survey questionnaire was used to collect data from a conveniently recruited sample of 272 members of a South African government department. Pearson's correlation test as well as a regression analysis were employed to test the existence of a relationship between employee satisfaction and organisational performance. The mean score ranking technique was used to compare the impact of the individual employee satisfaction factors on organisational performance. MAIN FINDINGS: Positive correlations were observed between organisational performance and all five employee satisfaction factors, namely working conditions, ability utilisation, creativity, teamwork and autonomy. Amongst the five factors, teamwork had the greatest impact on organisational performance, followed by ability utilisation, creativity, autonomy, with working conditions exerting the least influence. PRACTICAL AND/OR MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: Strategic interventions involving positive adjustments on the five employee satisfaction dimensions examined in this study may be initiated and applied to improve overall organisational performance in public organisations. CONTRIBUTIONS AND/OR VALUE ADD: THE STUDY ENDORSES THE NOTION THAT A SATISFIED workforce could be the key to enhanced organisational performance. <![CDATA[<b>Emotion episodes of Afrikaans-speaking employees in the workplace</b>]]> ORIENTATION: Emotions must be investigated within the natural contexts in which they occur. It therefore becomes crucial to study episodes in the workplace. RESEARCH PURPOSE: The objective of this study was to determine the positive and negative emotion episodes and frequencies of working Afrikaans-speaking adults. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: To date, no study has been conducted to determine emotion episodes amongst White Afrikaans-speaking working adults in South Africa. Gooty, Connelly, Griffith and Gupta also argue for research on emotions in the natural settings in which they occur - the workplace. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: A survey design with an availability sample was used. The participants (N = 179) consisted of White Afrikaans-speaking working adults. The Episode Grid was administered to capture the emotion episodes. MAIN FINDINGS: The main emotion episodes reported on with positive content included goal achievement, receiving recognition and personal incidents. Emotion episodes with negative content included categories such as behaviour of work colleagues, acts of boss/superior/management and task requirements. PRACTICAL AND/OR MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: The findings are useful for managers who want to enhance the emotional quality of the work-life of employees. Changes could be made, for example, to practices of giving recognition within work environments and the clarification of task requirements. The knowledge on emotion episodes could be very useful in planning interventions. CONTRIBUTION AND/OR VALUE-ADDING: The findings and results of this study provided insight into emotion episodes as events in the workplace can cause positive and negative workplace experiences. This information should be taken into consideration with regard to wellness and emotion measurement efforts. <![CDATA[<b>Work-family conflict and work engagement among mothers: Conscientiousness and neuroticism as moderators</b>]]> ORIENTATION: The study investigates factors that impact work-family conflict and work engagement among working mothers. RESEARCH PURPOSE: The job demand-resources model is utilised to investigate the moderating role of conscientiousness and neuroticism on the relationship between work-family conflict and work engagement. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: Working mothers are challenged to establish a balance between work and family life. The resulting work-family conflict can negatively affect well-being. It is thus necessary to explore personal factors that relate to work-family conflict, particularly in the South African context. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: A quantitative, cross-sectional survey design was used. The sample (N = 267) was comprised of working mothers from several organisations. Data was gathered using the work-to-family conflict questionnaire, the Basic Traits Inventory and the Utrecht Work Engagement Scale. MAIN FINDINGS: The results indicated that work-family conflict negatively predicts work engagement. Conscientiousness positively predicts work engagement, and neuroticism negatively predicts work engagement. A significant interaction effect was found for conscientiousness but not for neuroticism. The findings showed that for participants with high levels of conscientiousness, work engagement decreases significantly more with an increase in work-family conflict than for participants with low levels of conscientiousness. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: Organisations should consider those individuals who have high levels of conscientiousness and low levels of neuroticism in the selection and placement of employees. In addition, organisations have a responsibility to provide conscientious women, particularly mothers, with adequate support to ensure that work-family conflict does not adversely impact their levels of work engagement. <![CDATA[<b>The relationship between wellbeing indicators and teacher psychological stress in Eastern Cape public schools in South Africa</b>]]> ORIENTATION: Positive psychological and subjective wellbeing indicators have proven to be protective against certain physical illnesses but have been rarely assessed in teacher stress. RESEARCH PURPOSE: The main objective of this study was to assess the relationship between indicators of wellbeing and stress and to further assess the relative importance of these wellbeing indicators in explaining stress variance in a large sample of Eastern Cape primary and high school teachers in South Africa. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: The majority of teacher stress studies focus on the misfit between the individual's resources and the environmental demands. There is a scarcity of studies reporting on protective factors in teaching and we know little about their possible role as possible protective factors against stress. This is important in developing stress prevention strategies. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: A cross-sectional survey was used targeting public school teachers in the Eastern Cape. The sample size was 562 randomly selected teachers from both public primary and high schools. MAIN FINDINGS: The results revealed that stress is prevalent amongst teachers. Subjective and psychological wellbeing factors added significantly to the explained stress variance. Also, both negative affect and role problems had significant positive correlations with stress, whilst psychological wellbeing had a strong inverse relationship with stress. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: The results implied that interventions focusing on improving psychological wellbeing and reduction of negative affect can contribute to stress prevention. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: The results contributed towards a better understanding of the relative importance of wellbeing constructs as protective factors against teacher stress. <![CDATA[<b>Transformational leadership as a moderator of the relationship between psychological safety and learning behaviour in work teams in Ghana</b>]]> ORIENTATION: Transformational team leadership is an important variable that influences team members' perception of the team as psychologically safe enough to engage in learning behaviours. RESEARCH PURPOSE: The study was aimed at investigating the relationship between psychological safety and learning behaviour in teams, as well as the moderating role of transformational team leadership in this relationship. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: For a team to be effective, adaptive and innovative and engage in learning behaviours, the transformational team leader must set the right climate in the team, where he or she welcomes the team members' opinions, questions and feedback at no risk to their image. An understanding of this will be important in team leader selection and training. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: Using a cross-sectional survey design, 57 work teams comprising 456 respondents in teams of 7-9 members were purposively sampled from five financial institutions in Accra, Ghana. Hierarchical regression and moderation analyses were run on the data at the team level. MAIN FINDINGS: Results indicated a positive relationship between team psychological safety and team learning behaviour, with transformational team leadership moderating this relationship. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATION: Transformational team leadership is important in creating a climate of psychological safety that will enable team members to engage in learning behaviours. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: The study provided theoretical and empirical evidence that, in organisational contexts, transformational team leadership is an important variable that can facilitate psychological safety and learning behaviour in teams. <![CDATA[<b>Comprehensibility, manageability and meaningfulness at work</b>: <b>Construct validity of a scale measuring work-related sense of coherence</b>]]> ORIENTATION: Work-related sense of coherence (Work-SoC) is defined as the perceived comprehensibility, manageability and meaningfulness of an individual's current work situation. RESEARCH PURPOSE: The aim of the present study was to investigate the factorial invariance and the construct validity of a scale that measures Work-SoC. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: It might be useful to specifically apply the concept of sense of coherence to the work context. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: Statistical analysis was performed on cross-sectional (n = 3412) and longitudinal (n = 1286) questionnaire data collected in eight medium to large Swiss companies from diverse economic sectors (four industrial-production companies, one food-processing company, one public-administration service and two hospitals). The dataset therefore covers a broad range of different occupational groups. MAIN FINDINGS: Multiple-group analyses indicated that the scale's factor structure remains invariant across different employee groups and across time. High values in job resources were related to high values in Work-SoC whereas high values in job demands were related to low values in Work-SoC. Furthermore, Work-SoC acted as a partial mediator between job resources and work engagement. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: It can be concluded that Work-SoC might serve as a practical screening instrument for assessing an employee's perception of the potential health-promoting qualities of his or her current work situation. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: The study advances both the salutogenic theory and the field of positive occupational health psychology by redefining sense of coherence as an interactional and context-specific construct that is useful for intervention research. <![CDATA[<b>Development of the learning programme management and evaluation scale for the South African skills development context</b>]]> RESEARCH PURPOSE: The present study developed and tested the construct validity and reliability of the learning programme management and evaluation (LPME) scale. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: The LPME scale was developed to measure and enhance the effectiveness of the management and evaluation of occupational learning programmes in the South African skills development context. Currently no such instrument exists in the South African skills development context; hence there is a need for it. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: This study followed a quantitative, non-experimental, cross-sectional design using primary data. The LPME scale was administered to a sample of 652 skills development practitioners and learners or apprentices drawn from six organisations representing at least five economic sectors in South Africa. Data were analysed using SPSS and Rasch modelling to test the validity and reliability of the new scale. MAIN FINDINGS: The findings show that the LPME scale is a valid and reliable 11-dimensional measure comprising 81 items. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: In view of the seriousness of the skills shortage challenge facing South Africa, this study provides a solid base upon which skills development practitioners can effectively manage and evaluate occupational learning programmes. Furthermore, the newly developed LPME scale provides a basis for further human resource development research in the quest for a solution to the skills shortage challenge. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: This study contributes by developing a new scale and testing its validity and reliability. As a valid and reliable measure, the LPME scale can be applied with confidence in various South African workplaces. <![CDATA[<b>Sense of coherence and job characteristics in predicting burnout in a South African sample</b>]]> ORIENTATION: Research that considers the effects of individual characteristics and job characteristics jointly in burnout is necessary, especially when one considers the possibility of curvilinear relationships between job characteristics and burnout. RESEARCH PURPOSE: This study examines the contribution of sense of coherence (SOC) and job characteristics to predicting burnout by considering direct and moderating effects. MOTIVATION FOR THIS STUDY: Understanding the relationships of individual and job characteristics with burnout is necessary for preventing burnout. It also informs the design of interventions. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: The participants were 632 working adults (57% female) in South Africa. The measures included the Job Content Questionnaire, the Sense of Coherence Questionnaire and the Maslach Burnout Inventory. The authors analysed the data using hierarchical multiple regression with the enter method. MAIN FINDINGS: Job characteristics and SOC show the expected direct effects on burnout. SOC has a direct negative effect on burnout. Job demands and supervisor social support show nonlinear relationships with burnout. SOC moderates the effect of demands on burnout and has a protective function so that the demands-burnout relationship differs for those with high and low SOC. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: The types of effects, the shape of the stressor-strain relationship and the different contributions of individual and job characteristics have implications for designing interventions. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE ADD: SOC functions differently when combined with demands, control and support. These different effects suggest that it is not merely the presence or absence of a job characteristic that is important for well-being outcomes but how people respond to its presence or absence. <![CDATA[<b>When rendering hospitality becomes collateral damage</b>: <b>Psycho-organisational variables and job burnout amongst hotel workers in metropolitan Nigeria</b>]]> ORIENTATION: Job burnout is a serious problem in the hospitality industry. Therefore, employees require ongoing job and personal resources to cope with job burnout. RESEARCH PURPOSE: The study investigated the influence of psycho-organisational variables (i.e. perceived organisational support, self-efficacy and age) on job burnout amongst hotel workers. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: Investigating the independent and joint influence of psycho-organisational variables on burnout will assist in pulling together psycho-organisational factors influencing burnout and its dimensions cohesively in systematic theory building and intervention plans. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: This is a cross-sectional survey designed to investigate perceived organisational support, self-efficacy and age as predictors of job burnout amongst 268 hotel workers from 10 registered hotels in some metropolitan cities in Ondo State, south-western Nigeria. Structural equation modelling techniques were conducted to test the proposed hypotheses. MAIN FINDINGS: Structural equation modelling revealed that perceived organisational support and self-efficacy have inverse relationships with burnout syndrome and its dimensions. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: These findings imply that it is possible for different stakeholders in the hotel industry in Nigeria to reduce the incidence of high burnout amongst hotel workers by providing adequate organisational support to cope with difficult job demands and organising self-efficacy training to improve individuals' confidence in their abilities to deal with job burnout. Such intervention can be individual-oriented, organisation-oriented or a combination. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: This study contributes to literature by confirming that organisational support and self-efficacy are relevant in coping with burnout. <![CDATA[<b>The role of socio-demographic variables and their interaction effect on sense of coherence</b>]]> ORIENTATION: Socio-demographics play a role in sense of coherence (SOC), indicating the strength of resistance resources available to employees from different socio-demographic groupings. RESEARCH PURPOSE: To explore whether and how socio-demographic variables and their interactive effect determine a distinctively high or low SOC. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: Various studies include an exploration of the role of socio-demographic attributes on SOC, yet do not investigate the interactive effect of these socio-demographics on high or low SOC. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: Quantitative, cross-sectional survey design. The chi-square interaction detection method (CHAID) was applied to a large-scale employee sample (n = 7185). Confirmatory analysis was done by exploring predictor effects on two possible permutations of high or low SOC classifications. MAIN FINDINGS: Results indicated a statistically significant four-factor interactive effect of demographic variables on SOC. Level of income most strongly partitioned high to low SOC ratio groups. Marital status and number of dependants, with level of income, further distinguished statistically distinct high to low SOC ratio groups. Race indicated distinct high to low SOC ratio groups in the higher income group. No statistically significant effects were found for age and gender. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: Companies should provide lower income employees with financial counselling and special support for single or divorced employees and employees who are married but the sole household earner. In the middle to high income category employee assistance should cater for employees with dependants and especially for the sole household earners. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: Establishing whether and how demographic variables predict high to low SOC ratios broadens the theoretical knowledge base of SOC. The study contributes methodologically in its application of CHAID analysis. <![CDATA[<b>Content validation</b>: <b>The forgotten step-child or a crucial step in assessment centre validation?</b>]]> ORIENTATION: Assessment centres (ACs) are a popular method of assessment in South Africa, as they offer a practical link to the required job, directly observed through candidate behaviour. Content is often borrowed from the USA, so research into the applicability of that content in South Africa is justified. RESEARCH PURPOSE: This study aimed to determine whether a selected USA-developed virtual assessment centre (VAC) measured what it claims to, and to determine whether the content is suitable for South Africa. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: A solid pre-statistical foundation of content forms the backbone of assessing validity. Content validation analysis is well suited to analysing the relevance of AC simulations in a specific cultural context. Too often content validation is either implied, or insufficiently explained. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: A content evaluation schedule was developed, consisting of 50 items covering seven content validation dimensions. Thirteen subject matter experts and nine functional experts were tasked to assess an imported VAC using this schedule. MAIN FINDINGS: This study provides support that the VAC appears to measure what it purports to, and that overall, the content is suitable for use in South Africa. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: Content created in the USA can be assessed for relevance and applicability for South Africa through content validation. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: This study contributes to AC literature and assessment methodology by demonstrating the importance and utility of content validation. Importers and developers of AC content may use this study's techniques to validate content to meet legislative requirements and ensure domain relevance. <![CDATA[<b>The relationship between emotional intelligence and leadership styles in the South African petrochemical industry</b>]]> ORIENTATION: Although research on emotional intelligence in the context of leadership has remained a recurrent area of interest in theory and practice during the past decade, ongoing debate continues regarding the contribution of emotional intelligence to the understanding of leadership. RESEARCH PURPOSE: The aim of this study was to determine the relationship between self-reported emotional intelligence and leadership styles in a South African context and to determine whether emotional intelligence can predict an effective leadership style. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: Research is needed in order to determine a more detailed relationship between emotional intelligence and leadership in the dynamic and globalising South African petrochemical context. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: The study was conducted in terms of a positivist paradigm, using quantitative research instruments. Leaders (N = 161) were selected from a business unit in a South African petrochemical organisation. Self-reports from the emotional quotient inventory and the Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ Form 5X, Version 2009) were analysed. Correlation analyses indicated statistically-significant relationships between emotional intelligence and transformational and laissez-faire leadership. MAIN FINDINGS: Findings indicated positive correlations between self-reported emotional intelligence (specifically adaptability) and transformational leadership. Negative correlations were obtained between emotional intelligence (specifically intrapersonal skills) and laissez-faire leadership. The research also showed differences between specific demographic variables. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: This study provides valuable significance for organisations' endeavours in improving, training and identifying alternative selection and assessment procedures for evaluating leaders' strengths. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: This research contributes to the South African research on emotional intelligence and leadership styles and thereby adds context-specific value to the topic within a specific cultural and organisational context. <![CDATA[<b>Developing and testing items for the South African Personality Inventory (SAPI)</b>]]> ORIENTATION: A multicultural country like South Africa needs fair cross-cultural psychometric instruments. RESEARCH PURPOSE: This article reports on the process of identifying items for, and provides a quantitative evaluation of, the South African Personality Inventory (SAPI) items. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: The study intended to develop an indigenous and psychometrically sound personality instrument that adheres to the requirements of South African legislation and excludes cultural bias. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: The authors used a cross-sectional design. They measured the nine SAPI clusters identified in the qualitative stage of the SAPI project in 11 separate quantitative studies. Convenience sampling yielded 6735 participants. Statistical analysis focused on the construct validity and reliability of items. The authors eliminated items that showed poor performance, based on common psychometric criteria, and selected the best performing items to form part of the final version of the SAPI. MAIN FINDINGS: The authors developed 2573 items from the nine SAPI clusters. Of these, 2268 items were valid and reliable representations of the SAPI facets. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: The authors developed a large item pool. It measures personality in South Africa. Researchers can refine it for the SAPI. Furthermore, the project illustrates an approach that researchers can use in projects that aim to develop culturally-informed psychological measures. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: Personality assessment is important for recruiting, selecting and developing employees. This study contributes to the current knowledge about the early processes researchers follow when they develop a personality instrument that measures personality fairly in different cultural groups, as the SAPI does. <![CDATA[<b>Validation of the Short Self-Regulation Questionnaire in a group of Black teachers</b>: <b>The SABPA study</b>]]> ORIENTATION: Recent literature has emphasised the important role that self-regulation plays in the mental health of individuals. The lack of a validated psychometric instrument to accurately measure self-regulation amongst Black South Africans however limits its potential impact within the challenging South African context. RESEARCH PURPOSE: The aim of this study was to investigate the psychometric properties of the Short Self-Regulation Questionnaire (SSRQ) when used in a South African context, specifically focusing on Black South Africans. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: By commenting on the ability of the SSRQ to accurately capture the construct of self-regulation amongst Black educators, the current article serves to address and alleviate the lacunae in our understanding of self-regulation as a potentially protective factor. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: The study was of a quantitative nature, and made use of a cross-sectional design and purposively selected study sample. Participants were urbanised Black teachers (N = 200) who completed the SSRQ and other measures of self-regulation and psychological well-being. MAIN FINDINGS: The reliability of the SSRQ total scale score proved satisfactory. Factor analysis produced five robust sub-constructs that were theoretically interpretable. Significant correlations between the SSRQ and other measures of self-regulation and psychological well-being also indicated good criterion-related validity. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: The availability of a reliable and valid instrument for the measurement of self-regulation in the South African context will enable both researchers and practitioners to better understand and utilise self-regulation in the enhancement of individual well-being. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: The SSRQ's ability to accurately measure self-regulation will contribute to our understanding of its role as preventive strength in the South African context. Refinement of item content will serve to further strengthen the SSRQ's factor structure, and improve its validity for use within the Black South African population. <![CDATA[<b>Intention to quit amongst Generation Y academics in higher education</b>]]> ORIENTATION: For a higher education institution (HEI) to maintain a long-term trajectory of excellence, a strong focus on retaining a younger generation of skilled academics is needed. RESEARCH PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to investigate intention to quit amongst Generation Y academics in HEIs. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: Higher education institutions are more dependent on the abilities and commitment of their staff than most other organisations. More than 4000 academics will retire and need to be replaced by 2018, providing justification for the study of intention to quit of academics. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: An ex post facto quantitative research design was followed. Academics at six HEIs in South Africa were sampled. Measurement instruments included abridged versions of the Utrecht Work Engagement Scale, Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire, Arnold and Feldman Intention to Quit Scale, Job Descriptive Scale and Chew's reward scale. MAIN FINDINGS: Employee engagement, job satisfaction, remuneration, reward, recognition and transformational leadership were significantly related to intention to quit. In the partial model, three of these variables explained 45% of the variance in intention to quit. Partial least square path modelling revealed that employee engagement and job satisfaction have significant negative impacts on intention to quit. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: The findings serve as input for the development of efficacious strategies to retain Generation Y academics at HEIs in South Africa. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: This study contributes to our knowledge of intention to quit amongst Generation Y academics. It provides evidence of the complexity and inter-relatedness of variables in the phenomenological network of intention to quit. <![CDATA[<b>Investigating the construct validity of a development assessment centre</b>]]> ORIENTATION: The assessment centre (AC) is a prominent measurement tool for selection and development. RESEARCH PURPOSE: The aim of this study was to determine the construct validity of a one-day development assessment centre (DAC) using a convenience sample of 202 managers in a large South African banking institution. MOTIVATION FOR THE STUDY: Although the AC method is popular, it has been widely criticised as to whether it predominantly measures the dimensions it is designed to measure. RESEARCH DESIGN, APPROACH AND METHOD: The fit of the measurement models implied by the dimensions measured was analysed in a quantitative study using an ex post facto correlation design and structural equation modelling. MAIN FINDINGS: Bi-factor confirmatory factor analysis was used to assess the relative contribution of higher-order exercise and dimension effects. Empirical under-identification stemming from the small number of exercises designed to reflect designated latent dimensions restricted the number of DAC dimensions that could be evaluated. Ultimately, only one global dimension had enough measurement points and was analysed. The results suggested that dimension effects explained the majority of variance in the post-exercise dimension ratings. PRACTICAL/MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS: Candidates' proficiency on each dimension was used as the basis for development reports. The validity of inferences holds important implications for candidates' career development and growth. CONTRIBUTION/VALUE-ADD: The authors found only one study on construct validity of AC dimensions in the South African context. The present study is the first use the bi-factor approach. This study will consequently contribute to the scarce AC literature in South Africa.