Leadership is viewed by many in different ways, I believe it is the secret weapon that either enhances or retards the growth of an organization. It entails personal qualities that cater to the emotional side of the organizations (Berry, 1998). Leadership can be seen as crucial in determining the success or failure of any organization (Sadler, 2003). John Maxwell (2007) posits that leadership is a clear indicator of the success of an organization. Leadership is about articulating visions, embodying values, and creating the environment within which things can be accomplished (Richards & Engle, as cited in Yukl, 2013). Leaders employ different categories of leadership, some believe that leadership traits are integral to leadership. Four categories of leadership are instructional leadership, participative leadership and transformational leadership.
The Instructional leadership began in the early 1980s in the research on effective schools. This type of leadership focused on the way in which leadership improved or enhanced educational outcomes. Therefore, the principal’s role was to place emphasis on the teachers as the teachers focused on helping students learn (Stewart, 2006). Instructional leadership is significant in the governing of schools, it focuses mostly on the role of the school principal in organizing, controlling, supervising, and developing curriculum and instruction in the school (Bamburg ; Andrews, 1990; Hallinger ; Murphy, 1985). Leadership (2018) posits that instructional leadership is geared towards learning both for students and adults. This learning is measured by enhancement in instruction and in the quality of student performance. Instructional leadership focuses on leadership roles that are synonymous with teaching and learning (Murphy, 1988). In a broader view, instructional leadership also refers to all other functions that contribute to student learning, including managerial behaviors (Donmoyer ; Wagstaff, 1990; Murphy, 1988). Hallinger ; Heck (1996a, 1996b) posit that instructional leadership in?uences the quality of school outputs through the alignment of school structures with the school’s mission. The leaders are hands-on principals who have a wealth of knowledge about curriculum and instruction, and are not afraid of working with teachers on the improvement of teaching and learning (Cuban, 1984; Hallinger & Murphy, 1986). Newman (2005) in her study about how principals in Jamaica conceptualize school leadership, found out that principals viewed and defined school leadership as driven by the values of care, social justice and excellence. Hallinger and Murphy (2012) wrote, “While effective leadership cannot guarantee successful education reform, research affirms that sustainable school improvement is seldom found without active, skilful, instructional leadership from principals and teachers” (p. 6). This clearly shows how significant instructional leadership is to the success of a school.
Participative leadership is an extension of the bureaucratic model. The nature of bureaucracy with its impersonal approach has stimulated interest in the participative model. This new theory of organization places greater emphasis on employee morale and job satisfaction (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2000). Participative leadership is the type of leadership that encourages the subordinates to be a part of the decision-making process in the organization. The participative leader consults the subordinates and solicits their opinions, idea which he or she incorporates in the overall decision making in the organization ( Northouse. 2010). In this type of leadership, there is shared decision making by the leader and his or her employees, Koopman & Wierdsma ( as cited in Somech, A., & Wenderow, M. (2006). Based on the readings that I have perused participative leadership seems to be the similar to democratic leadership. This style of leadership involves all workers within the organization identifying important goals as well as forming strategies, procedures and making decisions to achieve the goal (Participative Leadership, 2018). Therefore, participative style of leadership can be defined as a leadership style that depends primarily on working as one, where the employees’ ideas, concerns, opinions are valued by the leadership in the organization. Participative leadership involves the full complement of people working in the organization. This is a leadership style in which the leader works closely with employees with the aim of creating relationships and rapport. The leader takes into account the workers’ feelings, ideas, opinions, and suggestions. According to Polston-Murdoch (2013, as cited in (Northouse, 2010), leaders who adopt the participative style of leadership seem to attain better employee performance than those who do not use this type of leadership; instructional leadership has a positive impact on job satisfaction and low employee turn-over rate, which is also great for morale
Participative leadership has four basic types of decision procedures the can be arranged on a continuum in from no influence by others to a high level of influence; these processes are autocratic, consultative, joint, and delegation (Yukl, 2010). Autocratic decisions are made by the leader who does not ask for the opinions of others, there is no participation. Consultative decisions are those in which the leader asks others for their opinions and ideas but makes the final decision alone, after considering others’ views. Joint decisions are made together by the leader and other relevant parties such as subordinates. Delegation happens when the leader gives an individual or group the authority and responsibility to make a decision (Yukl, 2010).
James McGregor Burns introduced the concept of transformational leadership in 1978. According to Burns, a transformational leader impacts the lives of those working in the organizations by changing their perceptions, values, and aspirations – all the time working for the greater good of the organization (Bass ; Riggio, 2014). Transformational leadership occurs when the leaders widen and promote the interests of their employees, when they are aware and accept the aims and task of the team, and when they encourage their employees to operate beyond their own self-interest for the greater good of the team. In order to do this, the transformational leader should be charismatic to the followers and thus encourage them. The leader should meet the emotional needs of each employee; or intellectually stimulate employees (Bass, 1990). This kind of leadership takes into account the interest of the workers. Lunenburg and Ornstein (2000) posit that transformational leadership place emphases on the leader who has an extraordinary impact on the organization. This category of leadership is extremely rare when compared to the other categories of leadership approaches.
Bass (1990), did a study in which he compared transactional leadership with transformational leadership. He posited four components of a transformational leader. Bass and Riggio (2006) posited four transformational components, these are: charismatic leadership, or idealized influence, inspirational motivation, intellectual stimulation and individualized consideration. The leader in the charismatic leadership, or idealized influence, this is when the leader is seen as a role model. The followers try to copy or imitate this leader, the leader is well respected, trusted and admired. He or she takes the risk, has a clear vision, mission and purpose. Inspirational motivation, in this component the leader acts as a motivator and also challenge the workers, team spirit is aroused. This leader is a good communicator, he or she communicates the expectation and demonstrate commitment to the goal and shared vision of the organization. The intellectual stimulation component sees the transformational leaders as leaders who encourage the followers to give new ideas and new ways of doing things (Bass, 1990). They stimulate others to exercise their creativity and they never publicly correct or criticize others. In the individualized consideration component the transformational leaders focus on the needs and also is involved in developing others. These leaders create a supportive climate where everyone is seen as different and are respected.
The twenty-first century is also known as the new millennium, it is said to be a period of transformations. The changes have been one of the most dramatic technological revolutions. James Martin (as cited in Dike, Odiwe ; Ehujor, 2015) described the twenty-first century as a period of time that has changed everything we do. It has changed the way we communicate and the way we work. It is an era of technological revolution that focuses on the computers, information, and communication as well as multimedia technologies (Dike, Odiwe ; Ehujor, 2015). This has implications for how leaders lead, the categories of leadership have changed to meet the demands of the twenty-first century. This is evident in how the leader has to adapt to the changing of time.
The instructional leadership has changed to meet the twenty-first century, Trilling and Fadel (as cited in Dike, Odiwe ; Ehujor, 2015) posit that instructional leaders at every level must attain the skills and knowledge to lead those they govern to adapt the twenty-first century teaching and learning methods to empower students with twenty-first century knowledge and skills. This is because no matter the part of the world in which they live, students are connected with others “around the globe” via the Internet, social media and other emerging information technologies, Trilling and Fadel (as cited in Dike, Odiwe ; Ehujor, 2015). The role of leaders and managers in the twenty-first century organizations is to keep up with the changes in technology and be a step ahead of the students. Those who occupy these positions are expected to conduct research and find ways to use the internet, social media and other emerging information technologies to their advantage so that they are abreast of the changing time and they can still be effective in achieving their goals.
Since 1978, leadership has evolved from being that of top-down, directive behaviours focused on teaching and learning, to a bottom-up collaborative process of guided change for school improvement. Political, critical, and cultural lenses have significantly expanded our leadership repertoires (Stewart, 2006). Effective leadership must adapt to the changes that organizations are experiencing due to innovation and the advancement of technology (Yamoah ; Arthur, 2014).
Base on my experience, instructional leadership has changed to meet the need of the twenty-first century in that there is more usage of technology now more than in the past. The principals now use technology to communicate with members of staff in ways they have never done in the past. The instructional leader has to move beyond fear of technology and now we see the instructional leader sending and receiving emails as a part of the normal communicating with stakeholders. Some instructional leaders will use social media to communicate speedily with the workers, for example, the leader would create a WhatsApp group in order to easily communicate with employees. Instructional leaders are now faced the huge task of reinventing schools and classrooms in a society that has been transformed by digital technologies, and many feel overwhelmed by the mandate to integrate computer technology into every subject and grade (Flanagan ; Jacobsen, 2003).
Now, principals are encouraging teachers to make technology a major component of the lessons. Therefore, students all over the globe will need plenty of practical exercises in using the twenty-first century skills, such as “critical thinking and problem solving, computer and technology skills, communication and self-direction skills” in the twenty-first century work environment (Trilling ; Fadel, 2009).
There is a growing understanding that the patterns of hierarchical leadership that served us in the past, are not well suited to the global complexity, rapid change, interdependency and multifaceted challenges (Frank ; Conte, 2016). Early science perspective on leadership focused on dichotomy, which means that the earlier form of leadership was task oriented. This means that leadership was more concerned with the task to be completed, however, now leadership is more focused on people (Bass ; Riggio, 2006).
Participative leadership has a positive effect on the followers that want control and want to feel a part of the decision-making process prior to the task being executed. It is not solely about accomplishing a task, this form of leadership places emphasis on the individuals. The participative leadership category is one that has decision making by the leaders and followers as the hallmark of this leadership style. Though this style of leadership adds to the satisfaction of group members, it could lead to poorer decisions (Frank ; Conte, 2016). In light of the change in century, I believe this way of making decisions have been modified to be updated and in line with the twenty first century. Participative leadership has changed to meet the need of the twenty first century by maintaining a constant discussion with employees in order to prevent misunderstandings and stimulate positive outcomes. (Scott-ladd, Travaglione, and Marshall, 2008). In the 21st century, research shows that employees are starting to make more demands on their employers. They want to be a part of a team and they want more involvement in decision-making (Shagholi and Hussin, 2009). Therefore, participative leadership assesses the situation and provide the atmosphere to encourage employees to be more involved and thus motivate them to perform at their optimal level. Having read so much about participative leadership I believe that it is a shift from the idea that the leader embodies all the wealth of knowledge, which is proposed by the Weberian model, and it is also less rigid.
Brown (1994, as cited in Odenyo, Chebet ; Rotich, 2015) postulated that transformational leadership is needed in an evolving technological society that is moving from controlled change to accelerated change nearly beyond control. He states that attitude and behaviour must be the target of transformational leaders. The main reason for technological change failure was fear. The ttransformational leader has reformed fear into motivation. Transformational leaders must meet market demands faster and better than before, given the increasingly interdependent economy (Bass and Avolio, as cited in Odenyo, Chebet ; Rotich, 2015). In order to successfully direct twenty-first century organizations, transformational leaders are needed. These leaders change in the twenty first century by being the kind of leader who is willing to break all the previously held beliefs and theories on leadership and create a new paradigm shift in the way organizations are managed (Odenyo, Chebet ; Rotich, 2015). The transformational leader serves as mentors, coaches, role models, and leaders, socializing members into the culture. They do so not because they are expected to do so but having assessed the situation they feel a personal obligation to help new members assimilate into the culture of the organization.
The first systematic study of leadership is known as trait leadership. In the early twentieth century, leadership traits were studied to find out what made certain people great leaders. The theories that were developed were called “great man” theories because they focused on identifying the innate qualities and characteristics possessed by great social, political, and military leaders ( Northouse. 2010). The trait perspective was based on an early psychological focus that argued that people were born with inherited traits or characteristics (Yukl, 2013).
Self-confidence and stress-tolerant are two positive traits of leadership I see evident in Jamaican schools. Self-confidence is considered one of the most influential motivators and regulators of behaviour in people’s everyday lives (Bandura, as cited in Druckman & Bjork, 1994). Self-confidence is not a motivational perspective by itself. It is a judgment about capabilities for accomplishment of some goal and must be considered within a broader conceptualization of motivation that provides the goal context (Druckman & Bjork, 1994). Self-confidence is one of the traits seen in Jamaican leadership and is a positive trait because it plays an important role in decision-making and in gaining others’ trust. Obviously, if the leader is not sure of what decision to make, or expresses a high degree of doubt, then the followers are less likely to trust the leader and be committed to the vision (Kirkpatrick ; Locke, 1991). I believe that in order for a principal to be selected for the job and be effective in the job he or she should have the personality trait of self- confidence. Yukl (2013) posits that without strong self-confidence, a leader is less likely to make influence attempts, and if an influence attempt is made, it is less likely to be successful. Leaders with high self-confidence are more likely to attempt difficult tasks and to set challenging objectives for themselves. This rightly so, as in Jamaica the leaders who are successful are those who take on difficult tasks and set meet challenging objectives. In addition, too little self confidence in the leader will see indecisive, avoidance of risks, and does not seek to influence others. On the other hand, too much self confidence sees the leader being: arrogant, acts too quickly, and takes too many risks (Yukl, 2013).
Stress tolerance is the ability of the school heads to cope with the stress due to personal, related and situational stressors trait in leadership is positive in that stress tolerance help managers cope with the hectic pace, long hours, and unrelenting demands of most managerial jobs (Yukl, 2013). It is said that the education sector is one of the high stress sectors. Effective problem solving requires an ability to remain calm and stay focused on a problem rather than panicking, denying the problem exists, or attempting to shift responsibility to someone else (Yukl, 2013). I concur that this trait is a positive and important one as in schools there are days when things happen, disgruntled parents, children have accidents that require hospitalized care and the leader has to able to remain calm even though he or she is in a stressful situation. Yukl (2013) suggested that in addition to making better decisions, a leader with high stress tolerance and composure is more likely to stay calm and provide confident, decisive direction to subordinates in a crisis.
Two negative traits of leadership that are evident in Jamaica are power motivation and narcissism. According to Yukl ( 2013), power motivation has to do with the leader who has a high need for power, enjoys influencing people also events and is more likely to seek positions of authority. Managers with a personalized power orientation use power to boost themselves and satisfy their strong need for esteem and status. This is real and hits home as many principals are like that, they have the power and they misuse this power, this happens a lot. They have little inhibition or self-control, and they exercise power impulsively. According to McClelland and Burnham (1976, as cited in Yukl, 2013) those leaders are rude to other people, they drink too much, they try to exploit others sexually, and they collect symbols of personal prestige such as fancy cars or big offices. Personalized power leaders seek to dominate subordinates by keeping them weak and dependent ( Yukl, 2013).
Yukl (2013) has narcissism as one of the leadership traits. He defines narcissism as a personality syndrome that includes several traits relevant to effective leadership, such as a strong need for esteem, a strong personalized need for power, low emotional maturity, and low integrity. Narcissists are so preoccupied with their own ego needs that they have little empathy or concern for the feelings and needs of others. They exploit and manipulate others to indulge their desire for self-glorification without feeling any remorse (Yukl, 2013). While it may be sad, there are leaders in Jamaica that is exactly like what is described here. They expect special favours from others without feeling any need for reciprocity. Narcissists tend to oversimplify human relationships and motives and see everything in extremely good and bad terms; they are very defensive and view criticism by others as a sign of rejection and disloyalty (Yukl, 2013). I believe there are some, not many, narcissistic leaders. These leaders are those who make subordinates feel frustrated about going to work.
Leadership has a significant effect on whether an organization flourishes or fails. The type of leadership of an institution can encourage moral or frustration. There are many types of leadership three are instructional, participative and transformational, these leadership categories have a positive effect on the subordinate. The leadership category that focuses on the employee is deemed to encourage high performance. Leadership traits I believe is important to leadership. The leader’s personality has a positive or negative effect on his or her leadership capabilities, this can impact the way the subordinates feel about the job.