The Role of Strategic Leadership Style on Compliance with Public Service Ethics in the County Governments of Kenya


  • David Kinyua M’Mugambi Management University of Africa
  • Washington Okeyo Management University of Africa
  • Magdalene Muthoka Management University of Africa


The demand for ethics in business and organizations has put a premium on leadership turning ethical leaders into a highly valued commodity. This demand is in response to the pervasive business and organizational failures experienced at the beginning of the twenty-first century blamed largely on unethical conduct. The nexus of leadership and ethical values has attracted wide interest in research and leadership practice mainly because leaders seek to influence and attain positive impact in all processes. The aim of the study was to establish the relationship between strategic leadership and public service ethics compliance in the County Governments of Kenya. The study was anchored on Strategic Leadership Theory. The study used positivism paradigm which is based on real facts, objectivity, neutrality, measurement and validity of results.  The target population of the study was all the 47 County Governments of Kenya. The total study sample is the product of the County sample and the eight selected Counties which is 584 respondents while the unit of analysis was permanent County employees randomly selected based on duty station at major towns. The respondents indicated that strategic leadership was considered to be of moderate importance in County Governments by employees across levels. Results indicated that the relationship between strategic leadership and public service ethics compliance had a strong association between strategic leadership predictor variables and dependent variable (public service ethics compliance). Visioning was rated lowest (3.76%) than other sub-variables of strategy formulation, strategy implementation, strategy evaluation and leader character that were all rated above 4 percent. When compared, individual sub-variable effects show that visioning has the highest effect on public service ethics compliance followed by leader character. Analysis of the relationship indicated presence of a strong positive and significant association. The study recommends that the government addresses the identified issues as policy priorities for strategic leadership to service as a control of unethical behavior and ultimately corruption in County Governments and the broader public service. The Government should also structure County Integrated Development Planning to include input of specific reference groups such as professional associations based in the Counties.

Keywords: Strategic Leadership, Public Service Ethics Compliance, County Governments & Kenya.

Author Biographies

David Kinyua M’Mugambi, Management University of Africa

PhD Candidate, Management University of Africa

Washington Okeyo, Management University of Africa

Vice Chancellor, Management University of Africa

Magdalene Muthoka, Management University of Africa

Lecturer, Management University of Africa


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How to Cite

M’Mugambi, D. K., Okeyo, W., & Muthoka, M. (2021). The Role of Strategic Leadership Style on Compliance with Public Service Ethics in the County Governments of Kenya. Journal of Human Resource & Leadership, 5(1), 46–61. Retrieved from