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Electrical Contractors and Leadership INTRODUCTION A research study is propo

A research study is proposed to investigate the extent to which a knowledge and application of leadership and human resource management concepts are related to the success of electrical contractors located in the Anchorage, Alaska area. The problem statement, study purpose, and ancillary information is presented in this chapter.

The business environment of the mid-1990s in the United States, together with the business environment that will emerge as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) begins to be implemented, places American business firms under tremendous competitive pressures. To survive in this dynamic era, the level of performance must be improved by all American firms whether or not an international component is a part of a firm's operations. This imperative is particularly relevant in the Anchorage, Alaska area where high wage levels demand improved productivity (Ramsay and Lehto, 1994, pp. 38-41).

High rates of personnel turnover lead to sub-standard organizational performance. A high personnel turnover rate is one of the most costly problems that afflict organizations. The costs of personnel turnover are not limited to those incurred directly in relation to those employees leaving the organization, such as the loss of productive workers, lost training costs, the necessity to train replacements, and so forth. Personnel turnover also exacts organizational costs through the effects it has on those employees who remain with the organization (Bailey and Davenport, 1986, pp. 105-108). The practice of leadership and the application of human resource management concepts have direct and substantive effects on an organization's personnel turnover rate.

Productivity is a major concern in the 1990s of all profit-oriented organizations regardless of size (Rothschild, 1993, pp. 17-18). Productivity levels within an organization are the product of a combination of physical, financial, and human resource inputs (M...

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