Existing literature confirms that effective leadership contributes to motivation in a way that enhances organisational performance. This article confirms this view and reports on research that was conducted in a pharmaceutical organisation in South Africa that investigated the relationship between leadership behaviour of sales managers and the motivation of sales teams. A quantitative dominant mixed methods approach was used for this research with a correlational design and the inclusion of content analysis.
Data were collected from a population of 60 respondents in a multinational pharmaceutical organisation, using a survey questionnaire. Factor analysis on the questionnaire confirmed four leadership behaviours, namely team, supportive, autocratic and directive leadership.
The findings showed that Pearson’s correlation coefficient (r) for autocratic leadership and motivation was the highest with an r-value of 0.574, indicating that during the implementation of a strategic alliance strategy, the strongest relationship existed between autocratic leadership behaviour and motivation.
Furthermore, the findings of the content analysis of the open ended questions indicated that task-oriented leadership behaviour could be the strongest motivating behaviour for sales team members when they implement strategies.