Effective Leadership During Organisational Chnange Education Essay

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This report presents a review of Effective leadership during organisational in secondary schools, India. The report opens with the purpose of study and the research questions and objectives. The report contains review of leadership theories and tracks their evolution over the past years and their impact on school climate. It also produces an analysis on general organisational change and organisational change in schools. The methods used for the research is also discussed. The review concludes with an introduction to the various styles that would be later analysed in the dissertation.


Today's world is a one of continuous inventions and discoveries. These changes have a significant impact on the future generation and us. Kirk and Gallagher (1983:34) describe education as the mirror of a society. It plays a vital role in the development of a country because education is the source of growth in any country. This may be one of the many various reasons why every country believes in education for all. Change is an essential drive in today's world of constant apprise. Leadership is essential, to lead an organisation and produce maximum outcomes as well as improve the organisation's operations. A school head master is responsible for the productivity of the teachers and plays a vital role during the organisation's change whether choosing an appropriate strategy or recognising the need for change.

Purpose of study

This research hopes to define the leadership skill that will be the most effective to device in secondary schools in India during change. There are two types of schools in India- Private and Public. This research is based on the private schools, where the school operates with limited academic or administrative interference from the government. This research would also discuss the effect of leadership on teacher's performance and students learning. The study is guided by three major research questions: Which is the most effective style of leadership to be followed in the 21st century schools? Which style of leadership strategy best suits the organisation during change? Which style maximises teacher output? .This study will deal with leadership styles that influence employee productivity and performance. Looking into the various theories and styles of leadership, we will see the consequences and impact on employee productivity, performance of the individual and the organization as a whole during change. The purpose is to research further into finding out the apt style for an institution and find data of our own to conclude primarily if this is probable and to see how this can be applied to escalate teacher performance. This study will also analyze the change models best suited for the organizations.

Aim and Objectives

The research will investigate Effective Leadership and its Impact on Teachers and students in secondary schools in India.

Objectives of the Research

To review literature on leadership styles with the intention of identifying the relationship between leadership styles and the impact it has on teacher's work performance.

To conduct an empirical study of the leadership styles head-teachers use in secondary schools, as well as teachers and students opinion, in order to identify the relationship between the two in a typical school setting.

To analyze work on change and leadership strategies during change.

To make recommendations for the improvement and development of the school based on the findings of the study.

Literature Review

This literature review is aimed to locate the research and documentary evidence relating to leadership in general and leadership in the educational sector concerning schools. This research also will dwell on organisational change and necessary leadership to guide through that change. The schools need more than just updating their academic work; they need to make the paradigm shift to a 21st century educational network. (Katz and Kahn, 1978)

Leadership over the years has been seen through many perspectives. (Begley and Paul, 1949; Caldwell,2006; ).There are various elucidations of leadership phenomena, each giving certain perception into the role of leader but each enduring an inadequate and wholly insufficient explanation of complex relationships.

Universal vs. Contingent Theories:

Certain viewpoints make the inherent perception that what institutes efficacious leadership does not depend on the situation in which the leader functions (Allport, 1937, p. 295). This perceives leadership as a common trait to individuals not correlating to their work level. It also proposes that there exists a just a "one best way" to lead; such perspectives attempt to offer universal prescriptions for leadership. Other approaches (Ryckman, 1985, p. 194) suggest that effective leadership depends on precise features of the leader's situation. These theories thus provide contingent recommendations for leadership contingent on certain situational factors.

Traits vs. Behaviours

Perspectives differ in the way the leadership is abstracted. Leadership is regarded as a determinate and assessable asset possessed in various extent by different people. Alternatively, it is possible to focus on observable leader behaviours rather than on inherent traits (Stogdill, 1948). According to this perspective, Leadership is expressed in terms of explicit behaviour forms rather than in terms of some intrinsic characteristic. Trait theory of leadership (Allport, 1937) is about the types of personality tendencies and behavior linked through effective leadership and it emphasizes that leadership qualities are inherent and not acquired. Behavioral style and leadership theory (Gladwell,2000) this theory states that leadership is not a set of behaviors but a pattern of intentions. Situational leadership theory (Fiedler and Garcia: 1987; Hersey and Blanchard: 1977) presumes that different styles of leaderships are better in different situations.

Hallinger (2000) developed the most frequently used perspective of instructional leadership. Instructional leadership influences the quality of school outcomes through the alignment of school structures like the academic standards, time allocation and curriculum, with the school's mission (Hallinger & Heck: 1996a, 1996b). Anderson, Ford & Hamilton (1998:269) is of the view that leaders use power as a tool to obtain co-operation from their employees. In this kind of leadership input from employees is not encouraged (Schermerhorn, Hunt and Osborn 2000: 287). However, Maxwell (1999:108) is of the opinion, that the leader should concentrate on contributing to people to extract maximum work. Dubrin (1998:2) and Sashkin and Sashkin's (2003:39) share a more modern perspective view of leadership saying that it is to do with motivation, transformation and change. They believe that leaders should motivate employees and creatively improve their organization. Another style, which is considered effective, is transformational leadership (Bass,1996; Bell, 1999).

The three main components for this style is

(1) Charisma or inspiration, this is the ability of Principals to provide a clear sense of goal, and develop a sense of loyalty and commitment from their followers.

(2) Individualized consideration, which is the ability of the leader to provide individualistic attention.

(3) Intellectual stimulation, where the leader encourages employee to use their creativity to re think traditional ways.

In this Globalised world of increasing Demand, leadership is not constrained just to an individual .Its the ability of the individual to engage people to produce outcomes collaboratively. "Democrative leadership aims to create an environment in which people are active contributors to the creation of the institutions, culture and relationships they inhabit" (Hopkins, 2007). However, democracy has its limitations when diplomacy and democracy is used in the appropriate situations, it has produced desired results. The idea of distributed leadership acts as a conceptual counterweight to over-reliance on the 'heroic' leader. The many challenges faced may arise in the form of resistance to cooperate, adverse political, social and economic forces, ineffective democracy or misbalances. Effective leadership is aligning people to work together towards a desired goal. Raymond Callahan's (1962) book Education and the Cult of Efficiency talks of how the focus should not be on how to operate a school but on how to educate children in the best way. Visionary leadership is the capability to generate and articulate a practical and a positive vision of the future for an organization (Nanus, 1992). Readings have shown that 'architectural' changes in design and 'competency destroying' innovations will be difficult for traditional leaders (Henderson and Clark, 1990).

According to the nature of the change, a hard system model or a soft system model can be applied. Based on the complexity and the seriousness of the situation, Paton and McCalman (2000) term it 'hard and soft systems'. The Open University calls it 'difficulties and messes'. Hard complexity is those problems that have optimal solutions. By contrast, soft complexity contains situations deals with human aspects and there is 'tantalizing multiplicity of different interpretations and reconstruction' (Senior, 2000).

There are varied approaches to planning and implementing change once it is categorised. Alba (2005) categorises organizational change and its management into the behaviourist, the cognitivist, and the discursive. PEST (Johson and Scholes,1999) and STEP (Goodman,1995) groups external changes as political, economic, technological and socio-cultural factors that influence organisations, their strategies, structures and operation (Senior, 2002). There are also internal changes such as culture, issues of power and cooperation and conflict.(Megginson et al., 1986). Stacey (1996) suggests closed, contained and open ended change. Buchanan and McCalman's (1989) model of 'Perpetual transition management' relates to large scale organisations and has interesting factors regarding change in general.

Understanding the organisations model is also precarious to determine change. Greiner states that, as organisations grow in magnitude and develop; their undertakings go through five phases, each of which is associated with a different growth period in an organisation's life. The Greiner's model of 'Organisational Life-Cycle' is valuable for identifying an organisation's situation, thus providing warning of the next crisis point it may have to face.

According to the nature of the change, a hard system model or a soft system model can be applied. Based on the complexity and the seriousness of the situation, Paton and McCalman (2000) term it 'hard and soft systems'. The Open University calls it 'difficulties and messes'. Hard complexity is those problems that have optimal solutions. By contrast soft complexity contains situations deals with human aspects and there is 'tantalizing multiplicity of different interpretations and reconstruction' (Senior, 2000).

Paton and McCalman with their invention of the 'TROPICS' test help to categorise a situation into hard or soft complexity. Once identifies Flood and Jackson (1991) suggest appropriate methodology to be adopted for the hard or soft complexity (Burke, 2005). Hard systems are used in situations where simple systems and a unitary ideology of relationships prevails, a particular type of change approach will be appropriate, whereas in situations of soft complexity where complex systems and a pluralist ideology of relationships prevails, a different type of change approach should be used. Hard systems rely like their earlier counter parts (engineering methods and operational research) on the assumption that clear change objective can be identified in order to work out the best way of achieving them. Open university's course materials suggests the System Intervention Strategy, Paton and McCalman 'Intervention Strategy Model' and Senior B's 'Hard systems model of change' all give a good frame work to implement change in 'Difficult' situations. The HSMC provides a practical approach to change that has been designed to be applied to situations which fall under low to medium complexity. It follows change in three phases:

1. The description phase

2. The option phase

3. The implementation phase.

The description phase helps to enquire deep into the problem and understand it. It contains recognising need for change or utilising an opportunity. Collecting others' viewpoint on the change and identifying whether it is a soft or a hard complexity. It requires setting up objectives and identifying the constraints as well as mode of measurement of success of the change implemented.

The second stage is the options stage where ideas are developed specifically relating to the objectives keeping in mind a range of perspectives and possibilities. The third stage is implementation of the desired option and allocating resources and responsibilities and monitoring the progress. Another similar frame work suiting both Hard and soft systems was the frame work inspired by Gladwells's (2000) ideas and principles. It talks about Prelaunch, Launch, Post launch and sustaining change.

Max Boisot (1995) suggests Strategic planning; Emergent planning; Intrapreneurship; Strategic intent. There is a major problems with applying just strategic planning in this world of rapid change as strategic planning is applied in a predictable and steady environment. We cannot apply strategic planning as it is applied in an environment of less rate of change. On the other hand, emergent strategy assumes incremental change with adjustment to the strategy as new information becomes available. Intrapreneurship assumes the rate of change cannot be coped with and thus decentralises work. However, Davies (2010) also suggests that implementation is the key to strategic leadership. Focussing on keeping the themes being simple; make strategy everyone's job; make strategy a continuous process and mobilize strategic change through effective leadership. ). Readings have shown that 'architectural' changes in design and 'competency destroying' innovations will be difficult for traditional leaders (Henderson and Clark, 1990). A network of implicit and explicit social obligations to employees, customers, and communities also can also obstruct adaptation to change (Sull, Tedlow, and Rosenbloom, 1997). It starts from instinctive perception and calculative study of the characteristics of the present situation, and it directs attention towards achieving positive realistic future outcomes. Researchers highlight the interface of personal experiences and environmental characteristics in creating and articulating a compelling vision (Cannella and Monroe, 1997).

In this era of high performance mere managing staff without leading them is unproductive. Leadership is about utilising the skills of various people specialised in their fields to achieve a common goal. Engaging people to work with co-ordination is very critical in an organisation. "Empower people then they do astonishing things-way beyond expectations" (Davis 2010: 62) Day et al (2000, p. 160) concludes that, "Research findings from diverse countries and different school contexts have revealed the powerful impact of leadership processes related to school effectiveness and improvement. ... Principals who make a significant and measurable contribution to the effectiveness of their staff lead schools that are effective and have the capacity to improve." Crum and Sherman (2008), promote student success by "developing personnel and facilitating their leadership capabilities, delegating tasks in a responsible manner and empowering school teams". They also believe having a positive rapport with staff and using effective communication strategies for managing the change process within their schools.

Joseph Blase (2000) states principals should trust their teachers and allow a certain amount of creativity; this would facilitate building of a trust-bond. Leithwood (1994) believe that Principals are responsible to educate teachers about new strategies and techniques to enable effective school improvement. Burns (1978) states that an effective leader efficiently makes the group members become less interested in themselves and more interested in the group at large. Davies (2010: 59) states that key to effective employee management is engaging employees for inputs but the final decision should be passed through the leader.

Foriska (1994) described instructional leadership as critical to the development and maintenance of an effective school. In instructional leadership the importance is always on student learning and principals should supply teachers with necessary resources and incentives to help them be passionate towards student learning. This style of leadership is widely spoken about and analyzed (Johnson and Holdaway,1990); Heck ,1992 and Andrews and Soder, 1987). "What counts is output. A school leader's effectiveness is based on how well students achieve"(Duke 1987: 23). The report for the task force states that studies show that school leaders influence student learning by emphasizing on ambitious goals and by establishing conditions that support teachers and student growth. It also states that leadership promotes student growth indirectly through the former and through the proper structuring of curriculum.

These indirect effects of high-quality leadership appear especially important in schools serving low socio-economic students who at greater risk for academic failure (Scheerens and Bosker, 1997). Charles Burford (1993) suggests humor as a tool to probe the values, intentions, and attitudes of others, and to expose our own characteristics without embarrassment. It would help in forming a good bond with teachers and students and make the Principal look less severe. Kythreotis, A. and Pashiardis, P. (2006) also state that a close relationship with students is very significant in student achievement. This however will not be possible in large institutions.

Organisational learning was found to consist of four factors (Mulford et al: 2000):

(1) a trusting and collaborative climate;

(2) a shared and monitored mission;

(3) taking initiatives and risks; and

(4) ongoing, relevant professional development.

The Research Method

Research is a process that involves various steps and can be defined as a systematic and organised effort to examine a precise problem that needs an explanation (Sekaran 1992). A research methodology is the amalgamation of procedures, methods and tools in conducting research. A research process encompasses understanding the research fields, asking meaningful research questions and applying valid research methodologies to these questions. Results from a research project donate to the body of knowledge by endorsing clear understanding and enhancing knowledge in a given research domain (Nunamaker, Chen and Purdin 1991). "The function of a research design is to ensure that the evidence obtained enables us to answer the initial question as unambiguously as possible." (David de Vaus, 2000). Cohen (1980) states that quantitative research is defimed as social research that employs empirical methods and empirical statements. The available options of method in collecting the empirical data will be evaluated and compared before the mode of communication for the survey is determined. The discussion focuses on the measurement format, context of questionnaire, composition of questionnaire, translation process, evaluation of the measurements and pilot testing. The sampling process is described next. The chapter concludes with a summary of the methodology employed.

However, Creswell (1994) has given a very concise definition of quantitative research as a type of research that is `explaining phenomena by collecting numerical data that are analysed using mathematically based methods.

Case study is a research, through reports of past studies, permits the examination and understanding of complex issues. It can be reflected as a vigorous research method chiefly when a rounded, in-depth study is essential. Renowned tool in many social science studies, the role of case study method in research becomes more important when issues regarding education (Gulsecen & Kubat, 2006), sociology (Grassel & Schirmer, 2006) and community-based problems (Johnson, 2006), such as poverty, unemployment, drug addiction, illiteracy, etc. are discussed.

A Case study of three schools will be performed. "Case study is a research strategy which focuses on understanding the dynamics present within single settings." (Hallinger, 2003). He also states that a case study is used to prove aims and to provide description and generate theory. Thus I have chosen to do a case study on three schools from South India.These schools are the common types of schools in India. These schools are private schools run by a single person or a trust. The head in charge is the Principal. The case study would analyze the different kinds of leadership styles used by the Principals and the impact it has on the school. The three schools are situated in the south of India in Tamil Nadu. The schools have a range of population 500-2000. The participants in the study would be the Principals, teachers and students from fifth grade upwards. Data on leadership styles and school climate will be collected. A qualitative and quantitative research would be conducted. Bryman (1988) argued for a "best of both worlds' approach and suggested that qualitative and quantitative approaches should be combined".

Thus I will be using both qualitative and quantitative approach to assess my research. Questionnaires will be given to the teachers and students. Written questionnaires about the change that has occurred at the school and recorded interviews about teaching practices will be employed by asking several questions that have determined options.

The questionnaire was deemed appropriate because of its usefulness in obtaining data on the feelings and perceptions of a group of people (Nworgu 1991:83). "Survey research uses scientific sampling and questionnaire design to measure characteristics of the population with statistical precision" (Creswell, 1994 ). Questionnaires will be used to gather information that will reveal the teachers' and students' perceptions of the school climate as well as their Principal's leadership styles. In addition, interviews will be conducted to acquire information from Principals on what they think of their leadership styles and the changes they make for the development of the school.

The target population is the Principals, teachers and students in private secondary schools in India.

Information will be collected as follows:

Theoretical information on leadership styles and school climate.

Empirical data on leadership styles and school climate.

Perspectives from Teachers and Students about the Principal.

Perspectives about the school climate and its effect on their performance.

This would then be used to correlate the variables to help in the research question and objectives.


A good Leader is essential to lead the school creatively and critically towards emerging teachers and students to create knowledge that is universal and help in breaking the obsolete mould in which they still function. There are various types of leadership styles of leadership and as seen in this review, ample literature available on it. The various kinds of leadership styles have their own positive and negative effects on student learning and teacher engagement to produce maximum outcomes. Effective leadership is the one that helps the Principal improve the school and helping students and teachers to contribute their best to this change using various styles as a tool. The styles and their impact will be further discussed in the research. An organisation is an environment, which thrives with adaptability. It should be an organisation open to change. Through the literature and research, we have accomplished that change is critical. There are many parts of the organisation, which with change can have an effect on every other part of the organisation. There are many tools to aid and guide change. The challenge lies in recognising the area of change and choosing the right model of change. They should be learning organisations, capable of adaptability in times of turmoil. Effective Leadership is imperative in change scenario. Through this descriptive research analysis, I hope to produce a valuable description of Effective Leadership during organizational change that can have a significant impact on the teachers and students performance as well lead the organization to a better future. The study will analyze leadership styles and theories and through qualitative research and data assemblage and produce a reliable answer to the research questions. This study would then help to make recommendations for the improvement and development of the given schools based on the findings of the study.