Date of Award

Fall 12-2023

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Interdisciplinary Studies and Professional Development

Committee Chair

Dr. H. Quincy Brown

Committee Chair School

Interdisciplinary Studies and Professional Development

Committee Member 2

Dr. John J. Kmiec, Committee Co-Chair

Committee Member 2 School

Interdisciplinary Studies and Professional Development

Committee Member 3

Dr. Heather M. Annulis

Committee Member 3 School

Interdisciplinary Studies and Professional Development

Committee Member 4

Dr. Dale L. Lunsford


According to Clifton and Harter (2019), managers determine an organization’s success. Specifically, managers determine 70% of worker engagement. Researchers (Bandura, 1997; Dwyer, 2019) have associated self-efficacy with leadership strengths. As such, frontline managers (FLMs) need holistic leadership development (HLD) training in the four leadership domains—analytic, conceptual, emotional, and spiritual—to improve their competencies and bolster their self-efficacy (Clifton & Harter, 2019; Ward, 2018). Integrative leadership development models that prioritize organizational resources through holistic leadership development offer a modern approach to addressing FLMs’ leadership skill development and self-efficacy (Guidi et al., 2018). According to Bandura (1997), self-efficacy is how individuals evaluate their strength or competence for achieving desired outcomes. Organizations prioritizing managers’ professional development through holistic approaches create competent workers who are confident in themselves and their work (Kurter, 2021). Organizations with high employee development cultures save time and money, which impacts stakeholders, productivity, and the United States’ gross domestic product (Clifton & Harter, 2019). This phenomenological qualitative study explored holistic leadership development’s influence on FLMs’ self-efficacy perceptions. Based on Creswell’s (1998) suggestion that phenomenological studies include 5–25 participants, the researcher interviewed 12 FLMs to explore their lived experiences and outcomes after receiving holistic leadership development. The researcher conducted one-on-one interviews, transcribed the data, and then performed reflexive thematic analysis to discover emergent themes. Data analysis indicated that FLMs exposed to management training have enhanced confidence in their roles. Another finding was that FLMs exposed to well-being therapy have improved overall mental health. The final finding was that exposure to HLD increases the overall self-efficacy of FLMs. These findings align with the findings of past scholarly studies such as those on the importance of well-being among managers (Clifton & Harter, 2021; Guidi et al., 2018), the importance of management training and development (Belcher, 2023; Kellner et al., 2016), and the importance of how exposure to HLD will contribute to an increase in a leader’s self-efficacy (Daniel et al., 2018; Hittler, 2019; Quatro et al., 2007).

Available for download on Monday, December 01, 2025