A Review In Educational Institutions In Nigeria Education Essay

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One who desires leadership desires a good thing. However, getting the leadership position is not just enough. The real challenge ought to be getting the leadership developed and leadership tasks accomplished in the proper way with the aim of bringing positive development to the people being led. Nigeria is certainly blessed with rich human and natural resources and should stand tall among the comity of nations. However, pictures that are not befitting a great nation such as Nigeria, all because many of those saddled with the responsibility of leadership are not living up to expectation. Adopting the leadership styles of some developed countries into Nigeria school system is apparently not enough to achieve good leadership in Nigerian educational institutions. This paper therefore, focuses on the leadership development of school administrators in Nigeria. Leadership is a skill so we need to teach it to our students, only then can we produce leaders who will have a potential to bring about a change in Nigerian educational institutions.

In every country, the place of leadership of any organization cannot be over emphasized. There is the need to state that every person is as much an actual leader, although not everyone can be a leader in a place at a particular time. This means that there is always a leader saddle with the task of leadership at a particular time and there are those to be led. Leadership is an integral element in the life of any person or organization. There is no gainsaying the fact that the quality of leadership of an organization plays a significant role in its development and in a pluralistic society such as Nigeria, the art of governance ought to be a serious affair. Although, it has been found that many who are involved in leadership in Nigeria educational institutional are more concerned about their personal gains and careless about the people they ought to serve and lead (Peretomode, 2012). It is no longer news that our educational institutions do not have desired respect of the comity of academic organizations due to the recklessness of their leadership from the primary to tertiary levels. This translates into the result of these vices is that Nigeria's educational leadership is still far behind in providing basic infrastructures for her stakeholders.

Why the present level of leadership in Nigeria has become very worrisome is the fact that in leadership position, some leaders are autocratic, professing authoritarian leadership style in both political, social economic, religious and educational arena. Is it that when such persons assume leadership positions they forget leadership affinity? Is the resent political quagmire in Nigeria associated with the style of leadership or has much to do with those in political leadership position? What should be the role of educationalists in leadership of Nigeria? Among Nigeria's leaders who should be the model leader? It seems in that many of the styles adopted in leadership development in the country have not yielded the desired fruits. However, a leader is one who by example and talent plays a directing role and wields commending influence over others.

The quality that any educational institutions in a country look for in terms of effective administration and management is leadership skills. Community groups and companies equate leadership with the ability to work well with other people. The significance of leadership skills is a fact known well to all. Leadership skills in particular have been lacking in Nigeria specifically in education institutions. Lack of strong leadership skills among educational professionals could be the reason for not achieving even the basic goals. Lack of leadership not being limited to educational professionals but is spread like epidemic through graduates of most Nigerian schools.


The Concept of Leadership

Leadership is a dynamic concept. It is a part of management but not all of it. It is the ability to persuade others to seek defined objectives enthusiastically; and it is the human factors which binds a group together and motivate it towards goals (Peretomode, 2012). The concept of leadership has attracted diverse meanings and interpretations. Some conceive leadership based on styles, while others described it to have a relationship with personal attributes. Yet, some other perceived leadership as in-born traits etc.

The traitist theory is the oldest concept of leadership and it borders on the concern for an identification of the makeup of a leader. Leadership effectiveness was therefore, believed to be the outcome of some personal traits or characteristics of a leader. Aristotle in the "Great man theory" maintained that some people are born great, some acquire greatness, yet others have greatness thrust on them. This view upholds that leaders are born not made. Thus leadership is inherited or acquired. A leader therefore is one who, by example and talent play a directing role and wields commanding influence over others. Leaders occupy management positions in organizations and are seen as role models by their followers. Unfortunately, leaders have their natural personality and ways of dealing with others which they bring to their work environment. These behavioral pattern consequently, influence their attitude towards their subordinates (Udofort, 1995).

An important aspect of managing human resources is inducing them to work with zeal, to put fort their best efforts and to accomplish difficult tasks. Essentially, it is the human factors that binds a group together and motivate it toward goals. This phenomenon highlights the need for leadership. Leadership is the responsibility of conducting people or group towards the achievement of determined goals. It entail being in charge as well as having the power to direct the affairs of such people to arrive at expected results.

There are three basic components in leadership as opined by Okorie (2003) since the leader is characterized by a strong drive for responsibility and task completion, vigor and persistence in pursuit of goals. They are:

(1) Responsibility

(2) Authority

(3) Power

Leadership is a responsibility to be carried out. It is a work, a mission to be accomplished, a service to be rendered. This implies that one who knows that he or she is incapable of carrying out the task of leadership should not aspire to such a position. Also, if the group reckons that particular person is fit for a leadership position; such a person should accept the challenge. Also, Elechi (1982) opined that leadership always carries power with it. He goes further to state that the proper exercise of power always involves ethical considerations. In Nigeria educational institutions, the ethics of power and leadership that can best be in the interest of the people must be the necessary guide for whoever will be the leaders. This entails that ethics is such an indispensable tool for leadership development.

The necessity of leadership arises from the need to have one who can control and direct the activities of members so as to realize the goals of group. Those being led are unavoidably important in the entire process of the attainment of goals. Success means leadership and the led working as a team in order to achieve good results. The people being led have a big role to play in any type of leadership: leadership involves followers, and in the absence of followers there can be no leader. It is in this sense some scholar maintain that the essence of leadership is followership. It is on this plane that Peretomode (2012) opined that leadership involves other people - followers or subordinates. They can be no leader without followers and it involves the use of influence.

Another essential element indicated in the earlier definition of leadership is the goal to be realized. People who have no goal to achieve do not require a leader. Though individuals in the group may have their personal goals, there must nevertheless be a common goal that all have that will make them have the need for a leader to bring about realization of the goal. Leadership is a process by which a person influences others to accomplish an objective and directs the organization in a way that makes it more cohesive and coherent. Leaders carry out this process by applying their leadership attributes, such as beliefs, values, ethics, character, knowledge and skills. Although, one's position as a manager, supervisor, etc gives one the authority to accomplish certain tasks and objectives in the organization; this power does not make one a leader. Leadership is not about bossing people around, but it influences followers to achiever set goals.

Leadership Development: Defined

Leadership development is defined as the "expansion of a person's capacity to be effective in leadership roles and processes this is because leadership has been described as a process of social influence in which one person can enlist the aid and support of others in the accomplishment of a common task by leaders. According to Peretomode (2012), leadership is of huge importance in management and educational administration because of its far reaching effects on the accomplishment of school progammes, objectives and the attainment of educational goals.

In fact, leadership development refers to an activity that enhances the quality of leadership within an individual or organization and is focused on developing the leadership abilities and attitudes of individuals because people are not all born with the ability to lead. Different personnel trait and characteristic help or hinder a person's leadership effectiveness and require formalized programs and types of leadership for developing leadership competencies. Achieving such development takes focus, practice and persistence.

The success of leadership development efforts are linked to three variable such: individual learner characteristics, the quality and nature of the leadership development programme and genuine support for behavioral change from the leader supervisor. Among the key concept in leadership development are: experiential learning, self-efficacy and visioning based on the type of leadership in educational institutions in Nigeria from the primary to tertiary levels such as: trait leadership, transactional leadership and transformational leadership.

Trait Leadership

Many scholars have argued that leadership is unique to only a select number of individuals and that these individuals possess certain immutable traits that cannot be developed. Although this perspective has been criticized immensely over the past century, scholars still continue to study the effects of personality traits on leader effectiveness. Research has demonstrated that successful leaders differ from other people and possess certain core personality traits that significantly contribute to their success. Understanding the importance of these core personality traits that predict leader effectiveness can help organizations with their leader selection, training, and development practices.

Trait leadership is defined as integrated patterns of personal characteristics that reflect a range of individual differences and foster consistent leader effectiveness across a variety of group and organizational situations (Zaccaro, Kemp, & Bader, 2004). The theory of trait leadership developed from early leadership research which focused primarily on finding a group of heritable attributes that differentiated leaders from non leaders. Leader effectiveness refers to the amount of influence a leader has on individual or group performance, followers' satisfaction, and overall effectiveness.

Although there has been an increased focus by researchers on trait leadership, this theory remains one of the most criticized theories of leadership. This is because, this approach to leadership is too simplistic and futile. Additionally, scholars have noted that trait leadership theory usually only focuses on how leader effectiveness is perceived by followers, because the process through which personality predicts the actual effectiveness of leaders has been relatively unexplored. Another criticism of trait leadership is its silence on the influence of the situational context surrounding leaders. Stogdill (1948) found that persons who are leaders in one situation may not be leaders in another situation.

Transactional Leadership

Transactional Leadership, also known as managerial leadership, focuses on the role of supervision, organisation, and group performance. Transactional leadership is a type of leadership in which the leader promotes compliance of his followers through both rewards and punishments. The leaders using the transactional approach are not looking to change the future, but to merely keep things the same. These leaders pay attention to followers' work in order to find faults and deviations. This type of leadership is effective in crisis and emergency situations, as well as when projects need to be carried out in a specific fashion.

In Nigeria, transactional leaders are concerned with processes rather than forward-thinking ideas. These types of leaders focus on contingent reward or contingent punishments. Contingent rewards (such as praise) are given when the set goals are accomplished on-time, ahead of time, or to keep subordinates working at a good pace at different times throughout completion. Contingent punishments, are given by school administrators when performance quality or quantity of students or staff as the case may be in educational institutions falls below production standards or goals and tasks are not met at all. Often, contingent punishments are handed down on a management-by-exception basis, in which the exception is something going wrong.[3] Within management-by-exception, there are active and passive routes. Active management-by-exception means that the leader continually looks at each subordinate's performance and makes changes to the subordinate's work to make corrections throughout the process. Passive management-by-exception leaders wait for issues to come up before fixing the problems. With transactional leadership being applied to the lower-level needs and being more managerial in style, it is a foundation for transformational leadership which applies to higher-level needs.

In fact, transactional leadership not only recognizes the needs of group members or employees but also the need to achieve the goals of the school. This type of leadership development has been found to mostly adopted by school heads in Nigeria since studies carried out shows that it has led to increase in staff task performances. In Nigeria, experience also shows that no style basically could be said to be the panacea for all organizational problems since a closer look will show an interplay of other type like democratic style where the leader (school administrator) has achieve some success. This is more so when we consider the fact that we live in a dynamic world where no two human beings are same and so are the problems in Nigerian schools where we try to achieve our goals.

Transformational Leadership

Transformational leaders are leaders who engage with followers, focus on higher order intrinsic needs, and raise consciousness about the significance of specific outcomes and new ways in which those outcomes might be achieved. The leader here is proactive and works to change the organizational culture by implementing new ideals.

Transformational leadership enhances the motivation, morale, and performance of followers through a variety of mechanisms. These include connecting the follower's sense of identity and self to the project and the collective identity of the organization; being a role model for followers that inspires them and makes them interested; challenging followers to take greater ownership for their work, and understanding the strengths and weaknesses of followers, so the leader can align followers with tasks that enhance their performance. There are four elements of transformational leadership:

Individualized Consideration - the degree to which the leader attends to each follower's needs, acts as a mentor or coach to the follower and listens to the follower's concerns and needs. The leader gives empathy and support, keeps communication open and places challenges before the followers. This also encompasses the need for respect and celebrates the individual contribution that each follower can make to the team. The followers have a will and aspirations for self development and have intrinsic motivation for their tasks.

Intellectual Stimulation - The degree to which the leader challenges assumptions, takes risks and solicits followers' ideas. Leaders with this style stimulate and encourage creativity in their followers. They nurture and develop people who think independently. For such a leader, learning is a value and unexpected situations are seen as opportunities to learn. The followers ask questions, think deeply about things and figure out better ways to execute their tasks.

Inspirational Motivation - the degree to which the leader articulates a vision that is appealing and inspiring to followers. Leaders with inspirational motivation challenge followers with high standards, communicate optimism about future goals, and provide meaning for the task at hand. Followers need to have a strong sense of purpose if they are to be motivated to act. Purpose and meaning provide the energy that drives a group forward. The visionary aspects of leadership are supported by communication skills that make the vision understandable, precise, powerful and engaging. The followers are willing to invest more effort in their tasks, they are encouraged and optimistic about the future and believe in their abilities.

Idealized Influence - Provides a role model for high ethical behavior and instills pride, gains respect and trust.

Leadership Skills

The first thing to realize about leadership skills is to know the difference between a manager and a true leader in any organization. Since leadership skills entails leadership ability, competency, proficiency etc which require a certain mindset to lead by example, communicate positively and effectively, being brave and honest, and taking ownership and responsibility over others, while a true leader wins subordinates' hearth through respect, trust and devotion that naturally comes from them. As such, a leader should be a peoples' person by so doing being an integral part of developing leadership skills by learning to respect the team's capacity, by taking decision of certain issues in the organization and be able to distribute task among members depending on the situation and individual strength (Avasthi, 2006)

Olele as cited in Peretomode (1998) agreed that principals as leaders in secondary schools should posses skills for making right decision that will benefit the school needs and staff generally. Also, Chukwu (2003) posited that for the result oriented school, teachers need to be motivated using democratic leadership skills by the chief executive, full involvement of the teachers in programme development, provision of adequate qualified teachers and adequate teaching materials. In addition, Adegbemile (2012) citing Ibukun (2003) asserted that communication skill, leadership skills and decision making skills are essential for effective personnel management in organizations.

Moreover, Adegbemile (2012) also opined that leadership skills needed by school administrators for effective school management include: identifying what motivate its staff, recognizing the effort of the staff, motivating and involving staff in decision making on matters concerning them and delegating duties to capable staff and encouraging appropriate skills for professional development.

Leadership is a chief tool and a part of management which deals and directs supervision of subordinates. It is a one way of mutual process of influence that obtains compliance. Effective leadership skills involve decision making, communication, self-awareness, the ability to motivate others and management group dynamic. It should be recognize, however, that leadership in practice is often complex and fluid, demanding both a strong skill set and enormous flexibility. Therefore, as a leader, it needs to have the ability to influence others and to exercise power constructively and responsively (Denhardt & Denhardt, 2009).

Putting ideas into action not only requires that one has the ability to make decisions and delegate task, but to do so in a manner that energizes and engages others. Doing so requires both confidence and self awareness. Employees look to leaders not only for direction but also for cues about how to feel about their work and their part in achieving organizational goals. Interestingly, however, successfully exercising these leadership skills depends on several essential "personal" skills that are part of one's social and psychological makeup. Some of these personal skills reflect one's approach to the world, others have to do with one's capacity for creativity or effective decision making and still others have to do with how one deals with ambiguity or lack of clarity.

In fact, effective leadership sometimes involves the use of power. The capacity to understand power, especially the capacity to recognize and use the resources one has available to influence others, is essential in modern organizations of all types. However, power is a far narrower term than leadership; although power is on aspect of the larger question of how one might develop greater skills in leadership. Early leadership studies attempted to identify and understand approach focused on the personal characteristics of existing or historical leaders, assuring that leaders were "burn, not made". These so - called "trait studies" were reviewed by Stogdill in the 1940s who found that although leaders do appear to possess traits that made them different from other people, there was a lack of agreement about exactly what were those traits. Stogdill concluded that leaders encouraged cooperative behaviour, were sensitive to others, exercised initiative and had self - confidence for high concern for both people and production in line with managerial and leadership behaviour.

In a nutshell, leadership is by far the single most important factor in determining the effectiveness of a group or organization. It does not simply appear to be something with which an individual is born; first and foremost, it does seem to be a learned, interpersonal relationship. It is not surprising that the ability to lead and direct has become identified in the popular mind that with a personality type or certain traits. First of all, practically all people are leaders on some occasions and follower most of the time. Further, among the traits often considered desirable, if not essential, for effective leadership, one usually include such things as being fair, honest, loyal thoughtful and judicious. While these traits undoubtedly are admirable and praise worthy, they would as easily qualify one to become a leader be approved to manage an organization or a department. Sadly, one also knows that some highly effective leaders have not necessarily been fair, honest, truthful or loyal.

Therefore, leadership skills are based on the act to discover, encourage, develop and persuade those who posses this priceless gift of being able to inspire and lead others, those who knows how to induce others, to work with them and to cooperate for attainment of the objective and purposes of the organization (Tyagi, 2004).


Research studies documenting the qualities possessed by leaders have provided leadership literature a broad range of traits and skills necessary to be a leader. These traits and skills range from the unattainable or unalterable, including age, gender and height, to those a person can work to develop such as confidence, insight and knowledge (Northouse, 2001). No one list has been developed because studies have found that different leadership skills and traits were required in different situations (Bass, 1990). Despite this, some characteristics have appeared in several research studies. In addition, the Skills- Based Model conceptualized by Mumford, el at (2000), demonstrated that skills are seen as developing as a function of the interaction between traits and experience. A general concern within applicant pools for school leadership positions has also raised concerns that many ascending to top school positions may not be ready to make strong decisions in the face of increasing pressures (Enegho, 2009).

Also, Elechi, (1982) pointed out that the interest of the people on leadership development implies that Nigerian leaders are in the positions for the good of Nigerian peoples. The led are not the plants and the vegetation in Nigerian communities but the people. The family, kindred, villages and town, cities and states constitute the peoples. Other includes associations, institutions, religious groups and others. Any group that had objectives to be actualized certainly needs of leadership. The necessity of leadership arises from the need to have one who can control and direct the activities of members to as to realize the goals of the group. Those being led are unavoidably important in the entire process of the attainment of goals. Success means leadership and the led working as a team in order to achieve good result. The people being led have a big role to play in any type of leadership be it democratic, idiographic, nomothetic, transactional trait leadership and transformational leadership to mention but few. In fact, any type of leadership involves followers and in the essence of followers, there can be no leader. It is this sense scholars maintain that the sense of leadership is followership.

Factors Affecting Leadership Development in Nigeria

There is the known fact that the difference between an efficient and effective organization and one that is not, is the presence of an effective leader, but what is not fully known is how to identify such good leaders and what they do. It is now known that there is no permanent hat that a leader wears at all times. A leader who is always afraid of being termed a bad leader, will surely become a weakling in the face of hard situational challenges.

Leaders are both born and made. A doctorate degree in educational administration for example does not automatically make one a good and effective leader. Surely, the individual has acquired some skills in training hut he still needs some innate characteristics that should make him fully acceptable by the subordinates whom he is going to administer. According to Denga (1982) effective leaders rank high positively in the following areas; leadership style, personality type, drive to get things done, ability to influence and convince others to go along with him, ability to plain, organize and motivate staff, ability to apply a network of incentives and rewards to motivate staff and raise their morale, ability to recruit and retain staff, and the leader's moral and ethical standing among several other characteristics.

Economic Environment

The educational organization like its counterpart the business organization is also concerned with economic forces since its primary goal is to maximize profit even though in its case, is the effective production of the society's needed manpower. The effectiveness of an organization can be measured by how effective it is in meeting its financial needs in the form of tax, fees, levies and other sources and how it can sustain these external sources of income on which it largely depends. In return it is expected to meet its obligation to these external sources of income and economic supporters. Other effects of the economic factor include; capital as "machinery, buildings, inventories of goods, office equipment, tools of all sorts and cash." In the case of the educational sector, accountability is required in terms of giving the citizens the right education and producing the needed manpower visa-vis the tax payer's money spent.

Ethical Environment

Normally the educational organization is expected to operate with the societal code of conduct, ethical standards and principles. Every profession has its code of conduct governing the behaviour and practice of its members and the teaching profession is not an exception. In a materialistic environment like the one we have in most developing Countries like Nigeria, the leadership ability of the school manager is very much tried by various situations. These include; the high rate of examination malpractice and rnenace of cult activities and other vices. Such a bundle of negative climate negates the expected ethical environment and thus provides a negative climate for effective leadership.

Political Environment

Organizations are usually effected by the political environment set up by the government through laws and legislations that are made in tune with the social, economic and political forces. The effect of political environment on leadership in the educational sector any differ from those of the business enterprises. Some of other decisions that might have some impact on the effectiveness of the leader of an educational institution in Nigerian include the government financial funding, the problem of university autonomy, with the government closely monitoring what is taught and what is not taught as well as the expected non-partisan position of the institution in politics and in public controversies that are external to the institution.

Technological Environment

The impact of modern technological development is very much felt in the management of business organizations. However, the fast rate at which the world is moving in terms of information, its dynamism and consequently the demand to meet the necessary manpower needs in terms of quantity and quality makes it mandatory for educational institutions to have the necessary technological environment like its business counterparts. There is the need for the use of computers, different types of electronics including hardware modern communication in the classroom situation. They are also needed for research purposes by members of staff.

Unfortunately, the situation in most higher educational institutions in developing countries is that of decay. The process of storage and retrieval of information is out dated and nothing to write home about. Where there are modern storage facilities, the information contained, there in, is as old as Adam. As a result of this lack of information on the latest state of the art in the different disciplines most information dished out to the students are unfortunately out dated.

Social Environment

Every leader needs to take note of the attitudes, beliefs, desires, taboos, values and customs of the people in which the organization is situated. For example, a situation where a first class chief in the community or environment where the institution is situated believes he is entitled to a certain percentage of admission of students or employment of staff into the educational institution and so must demand for this concession, even though none of his candidates is qualified for the different areas of demand is unimaginable. This situation one could say may be traced to traditional authority which is based in the traditional belief "in the sanctity of the status of those exercising authority in the past" (Hoy, 1982).

A leader may find himself in such a slippery situation. There is also the cultural belief in this part of the world that "old age" cannot be denied any demand no matter how outrageous that demand is. For example the leader might find himself in a position of being asked by one of the elders at home to, rescind a decision taken on the institutions' security guard after having been guilty of some valuable property. At the lower echelon of the organizational structure, you might fund Heads of Department who are confused about what to do with recalcitrant messengers, clerks drives etc, who feel that the African respect for old age is enough reason to openly flout organizational rules and regulations.

Leadership Training in School Environment

In most Nigerian educational institutions today few students learn leadership skills to serve the community. Schools and colleges need to rethink their policies on student leadership development. Students need to rethink their understanding of college and skills they want to acquire from college education. Nothing of real worth can ever be bought. Honor, respect, valor and knowledge all have to be earned. Similarly leadership skills too have to be developed. Leadership development is a lifelong process but college years are critical period.

However, for most students, learning leadership skills in the schools is not easy because they need to do this in addition to their academic work. Moreover, not all 49 students in college understand the importance of leadership development. They consider students groups as some clubs or a group with some narrowly defined function. On the small scale, students need to find classes that can provide opportunities for leadership development, especially if classes in their majors do not provide such opportunities. Similarly, within their existing classes, students need to see certain assignments, such as group projects, as opportunities to work on leadership skills. On a big scale, students need to see participation in student organizations during their college years not as something extracurricular but as something essential for their work following graduation.

Often, most educational institutions and faculties ask students to get involved in group assignments and group discussions in their classrooms without explaining to their students the importance of such work. If each faculty were to begin a group assignment with a discussion of the importance of leadership skills and how it benefits them to serve their communities and also in their future job prospects then the students would gain a new appreciation for group work in classes.

There is no doubt that now that management has come to be regarded as a "science" and a "technique" and accepted as a profession, the need for training leader has been universally recognized. It is true that traditionally, managers and executive leaders have been "born" rather than "made". It is also true that "coaching" by the boss and the schools of experience have been the traditional modes of training, and, indeed, they will never cease to play their part (Avasthi, 2006). However, the complex and technical nature of administrative processes has made a more systematic and better planned training programme imperative in the training and development of leadership as opined by Barnard in his work "education for executive" which makes a penetrating analysis of the needs of the executives and suggest methods to develop this requirement such as: need for broad interest and wide imagination and understanding, superior intellectual capacities, understanding human relations and importance of persuasion in human affairs.

Improving Leadership Skills

Whether aware or not on some levels we are continually leading our self and others. Therefore, it makes sense that we strive to improve our leadership skills. We need to have a clear vision of our self, others, and the world. We need to determine our purpose in life and how we want to contribute to the world. Using this vision an action plan is to be developed and take first step in making your vision a reality. You have to know where your destination is before you can map out a plan to get there. Determine your strengths and weaknesses. Use this assessment of yourself to know how or what you can contribute, as well as what areas of yourself must be improved. Stick with your morals and personal values system. Making choices and taking actions that are aligned with your morals and values helps you succeed almost effortlessly. A good leader knows how to communicate with others. He allows employees and colleagues to share their opinions and concerns. When information is given, he gets opinions from employees.

He also gives honest and unbiased feedback regularly, and gives clear directions as well.

Therefore communication skills need to be improved. Finally we need to continue to educate and improve one self. The person who thinks he is an expert, has a lot more to learn. Never stop learning. (Nakpodia, 2009)

Effective Team Leadership

A few systematic studies have been conducted to determine the success factors that contribute to effective team leadership. These studies revealed several important team leader qualities that help build an effective team. Building an effective team requires a leader that is an expert communicator who supports team efforts every way possible. Team leaders must build trust and inspire teamwork, facilitate and support team decisions, expand team capabilities, create a team identity, make the most of team differences, and foresee and influence change. A team leader must coach rather than demonstrate. By simply demonstrating, you are motivating your member to just get the work done rather than helping him learn. This impedes that team member's skill development and makes him dependent on you, causing him to require guidance for just about everything in the long run. He may even be hesitant to make decisions or take action without checking with you first.

A team leader must also know how to provide constructive criticism and to be positive. Although feedback is important, be sure to communicate the good as well as the bad. You can also provide clear suggestion on how your members can improve or guide them by sharing your knowledge and experience. Aside from being positive in what you say, also be positive in how you perceive things. Be positive in the way you look at simple opportunities or even inevitable obstacles. Last but not the least, a team leader must know how to listen. In order to achieve effective team leadership, you must value your group's ideas. Consider each and every idea that your team members generate and encourage them to communicate their insights regularly. A team is called a team because it is comprised of more than just one person helping each other out to achieve a common goal. (Bennis, 2009)

Ethical Dimension to Leadership

The first and foremost task of management is to provide effective leadership; that is to direct, control and coordinate the activities or a group of person with a view to achieving the desired goals of the organization. However, being successful in achieving goals for the organization, is not only the matter of importance in determining effective leadership. This is because there is an ethical dimension to successful leadership as pointed out by Northouse, (2006) who suggested that to function as a leader there are unique set of ethical challenges that the leader most faced. These challenges involve the issues of power, privilege and responsibilities over their subordinates. In spite of the overwhelming significance of effective leadership there is no unanimity about its content. This is because, leadership is often confused with personal preeminent and in fact there is a useful distinction between personal leadership and management leadership. A person is born with the talent for personal leadership but he must learn management leadership. As a result, a leader must possess some leadership skills which should not be equated with command and fear. More than coercion, persuasion and inspiration motivate successful leadership. Hence, leadership is seen as the activity of persuading people to cooperate in the achievement of a common objective (Avasthi, 2006).

Teaching Advanced Leadership Skills in Schools

Excellent leadership creates environments that influence people to follow chosen directions, thereby influencing the actions of individuals, groups, and organizations. Developing leaders to possess not only becoming expertise but also sufficient leadership skills is essential to solve these problems and to effectively improve the school systems. Calls for increasing the number of trained personnel leaders have come from many places.

Currently, educational institutions students receive little exposure to leadership concepts while in training. To ensure that leaders continue to emerge, one option is to integrate leadership training in community service into the undergraduate school curricula. Students understand that their training forms the core of what they need to know as future professionals.

Leadership competencies in community service include not just knowledge and attitudes but also a broad set of skills such as coalition building, policy advocacy, fundraising, program planning, motivation, and facilitation-skills not taught in the school curriculum.


In Nigeria, when people think of greatness they usually think of "things" a person possesses. They believe these things make someone a great person. If someone is rich and enjoys all kinds of possessions, he is called a "big man" or a person of authority, someone with power and he / she seen as important in the society. There are those regarded as great one to what they do to build big houses or mansion, unity books, making works of art like painting etc. (Enegho, 2009). It is usually said that such persons have made names for themselves. In all of these examples, greatness is equated with extraordinary things. Money, power, fame are thins people feel go with greatness.

However, true greatness is not in things; it is in people. Greatness is in person's heart. It is in the way you thing, not in what you have. Therefore to develop leadership, the leader's heart must be opened to every human need, because a leader is the individual in the group given a task of directing and coordinating tasks relevant to group activities or who, in the absence of a designated leader, carries the primary responsibility for performing functions in the group. He does not perceive his/her followers as lesser human who must be coerced to achieve results because without followers there will be no leadership.


Attempts have been made in this paper in accessing leadership development in Nigerian educational institutions. The situation is that most of the leaders in schools lord it over those they lead. These days, leaders need to move towards leadership programs because they need to recognize the importance of leadership in ways that older generations did not. Leaders need the skills, knowledge, and qualities like self-reliance, social and cultural capital, appreciation for life-long learning, creativity, conflict-resolution and teambuilding skills, ethics, understanding of economics, and more. Leadership programs may not be crowned leaders as soon as they get their diplomas, but ideally they will have the skills to lead tomorrow's generation and to thrive in the new economy. What is needed in the present Nigerian scenario is to inculcate leadership programs or training in the educational institutions. This has to be brought about by change in education policy. Leadership is a skill so we need to teach it in schools. Only then can we produce leaders who will have the potentials to bring about a change in our educational institutions. Leadership is never a finished product, but rather, it is an ongoing process that needs continuous nurturing and refinement. It is a part of our profession and our responsibility to people and the country's educational institutions.