Date of Award

Fall 10-2017

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)



First Advisor

Dr. John Henschke

Second Advisor

Dr. Susan K. Isenberg

Third Advisor

Dr. Stephen Sherblom


The purpose of this mixed-method study was to explore employees’ perceptions of their relationships with their direct supervisor, and to determine why employees chose to remain at SSM Health. This study used a three-part research design comprised of quantitative Likert scale rating statements, Henschke’s (2016) Modified Instructional Perspectives Inventory — Employees and Direct Supervisor (MIPI-EDS), and a qualitative open-ended survey-questionnaire to also explore how managers were perceived by their employees. By using Henschke’s measurement tool in alignment with questions/statements from Parts I and II of the survey-questionnaire, relationships between the andragogical principles as measured by the MIPI-EDS and other components, such as job satisfaction and employee length of service, were able to be examined. Specifically, this research study used andragogy to explore whether the factors of the direct supervisors identified by their employees, as measured by MIPIEDS, were predictors of the employees’ job satisfaction and their length of service. This study invited 448 employees of SSM Health who worked in specific departments throughout the Patient Business Service division to participate. All eligible employees had the option to participate in Parts I and II, while only employees who had been with the organization longer than five years were eligible to participate in Part III. At the end of the study, 100 employees participated in Parts I and II, and 49 of those 100 employees participated in Part III. The data revealed unexpected findings. In Parts I and II, there was no correlation found between the factors identified by the employees on the MIPI-EDS and the employees’ length of service with the organization. There was a significant correlation iii between the factors on the MIPI-EDS identified by the employees and the employees’ level of job satisfaction. In Part III, survey-questionnaires were analyzed using open coding methods and eight themes emerged as the reasons why participants chose to remain with SSM Health. Among the reasons, the top reasons that people chose to remain at SSM Health were: a) peer impact, b) relationship with direct supervisor, and c) genuine happiness/intrinsic motivation. Part III of the survey-questionnaire was also analyzed to potentially identify common themes that were related to the perceived level of job satisfaction of the employees who had been with the organization for longer than five years. After analyzing specific statements in Part III of the survey-questionnaire, two conclusions were identified: (a) the role of the supervisor impacted whether or not each employee liked his or her job and, (b) there were five main themes that supervisors needed to focus on in order for employees to like their actual jobs. Those themes were: (a) managerial appreciation and recognition of employees, (b) supervisor’s providing of emotional, and mental support, (c) employee individualization, (d) clear two-way communication between the supervisor and each employee, and, (e) expectation of high performance. Lastly, this study aimed to determine trends that could be identified from the experiences of past employees. Due to unseen circumstances, this piece of information was severely limited to the secondary data received from SSM Health. From the secondary data provided, past employees identified that the top two reasons they had left SSM Health in the last five years was ‘direct management,’ and ‘normal retirement.’


Copyright 2017