TRANSFORMATIONAL LEADERSHIP PRACTICE OF SYMBOLIZING PROFESSIONAL PRACTICE/VALUES AND EXCELLENCE IN MANAGEMENT OF PERSONNEL

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1 International Journal of Operations System and Human Resource Management Vol. 2, Nos. 1-2, January-December 2012, pp International Science Press TRANSFORMATIONAL LEADERSHIP PRACTICE OF SYMBOLIZING PROFESSIONAL PRACTICE/VALUES AND EXCELLENCE IN MANAGEMENT OF PERSONNEL Cecilia Emuji Ereh 1, Okon James Ekpenyong 2, Esther S. Uko 3, Umosen Aloysius Okon 4, Emmanuel Egbeji 5 Abstract: This study examined the relationship between transformational leadership practice of symbolizing professional practices/values and Excellence in personnel management by secondary school principals in Cross River State. The study employed the correlation survey design. Two research questions and two corresponding null hypotheses guided the study. The population comprised 5614 (232 principals teachers). Cluster random sampling technique was used to randomly select 375 out of 5382 teachers from the randomly 46 selected public secondary schools from the three education zones of Cross River State to respond to questionnaire items. Purposive sampling technique was used to draw the 232 public schooll principals for the study. The instruments entitled "Transformational Leadership Practice Questionnaire (TLPQ) and Excellence in Personnel Management Questionnaire (EPMQ) were used as instruments for data collection. Mean, standard deviation and Pearson correlation coefficient were used to answer the research questions, while multiple regression analysis was used to test the null hypothesis at.05 level. The result was that; leadership practice of symbolizing professional practice/values is utilized by principals in Cross River State, but to a low extent; there exists a significant relationship between transformational leadership practice of symbolizing professional practices/values and excellence in the management of personnel by principals in Cross River State. It was recommended that ministries of education and institutions should mount capacity-building programmes like workshops, conferences and in-service training to empower school principals in transformational leadership skills of symbolizing practice/values. This will go a long way to solve leadership problems in Cross River State and the country as a whole. Curriculum planners and government should include transformational leadership concept in the curriculum at all levels of education. 1. INTRODUCTION Leadership practice of symbolizing professional practice and values by school principals as a means to achieving excellence in the management of personnel may be described as role modeling. This 1 Departmentof Educational Management and Planning,University of Uyo. 2, 3 Department of Educational Administration and Planning, University of Calabar,Calabar, Nigeria. 4 Institute of Education, University of Uyo. 5 National Youth Service Corps.

2 80 International Journal of Operations System and Human Resource Management dimension of personnel management by principals or leaders entails setting an example for the personnel to emulate. This exemplary life style of leadership must be consistent with the values and goals set collaboratively by the members of the school organization. Sharrat and Sharrat (2006) agreed to this when they said that, such practices may enhance teaching/non-teaching personnel's beliefs about their own capabilities, and their sense of self-efficacy. They ended by saying that modeling may also contribute to personnel's day-to-day enthusiasm for their work by helping create perceptions of a dynamic and changing job. Stressing the importance of symbolizing professional practice and values in schools leadership, Leithwood, Jantzi, Steinbach & Devany in Lieberman, (1996) expanded on role modeling as one of the six important arenas in which principals might reasonably demonstrate leadership at the school level. Lieberman, (1996) contended that, when principals as teacher-leaders advise, assist and model for individual personnel,especially teachers, then give feedback after demonstrating instructional strategies, they remain credible, build capacity and promote trust among their colleagues. It is generally said that one cannot give what one has not got. This means that school administrators or principals must be skilled in leadership practices of symbolizing professional practices/values. This is why secondary school principals whose vision is to attain excellence in personnel management towards school improvement must lead by example, through the practice of professional practices/values. Bass in Kelly (2007) describes these kind of role modeling leaders as inspirational leaders. He also said that, these leaders use their own behaviours to set example of what is expected to be done by their followers. In relation to symbolizing professional practices/values by principals, Sharrat&Sharrat,(2006) s study titled impact of teacher s learning on students literacy achievement revealed that, co-transformational and instructional leaders(principals and teacher -leaders) make a difference in increased students achievement, when highly skilled literacy teacher- leaders have time, and principals take time during the school day to work along side with students and teachers in the classrooms. In other words, this practice when utilized by transformational leader principals, will produce positive effects. In the same study, Sharrat&Sharrat, (2006) showed that, teacher-leaders modeled instructional purposeful teaching that encouraged individuals and small groups of students to increase their achievement in literacy. Sharrat&Sharrat, (2006) noted that, most often mentioned in the research of Leithwood, Jantzi & Steinbach are the practices encompassed by the dimension of transformational leadership, or modeled best practices, or even role modeling. Devany in Lieberman, (1988) also asserted that, role modeling is one of the six important arenas in which teacher-leaders might reasonably demonstrate transformational leadership at the school levels. These earlier studies by educational administration scholars have provided information on the importance and the positive results of transformational leadership practice of symbolizing professional practices/values in the western countries. This means that, if this leadership practice is adopted in the Nigerian education system, it will be successful and impact positively on principals' leadership skill of personnel management. It was observed from the review that several studies have been carried out, such as Okon, (2008) s study titled Conflicts Resolution Options of Principals in Cross River State. This was in a bid to finding solution to leadership problems that becloud the management of personnel by principals,butnone has been specifically conducted on transformational leadership practice of symbolizing professional practice/values in Nigeria, especially in Cross River State, to see if it can be used to reverse the leadership problems that seem to dominate leadership practices of secondary

3 Transformational Leadership Practice of Symbolizing Professional Practice/Values school principals in the Nigerian educational system. This study was carried out to determine the relationship that exist between transformational leadership practice of symbolizing professional practices/values and excellence in the management of personnel by secondary school principals in Cross River State. The question therefore is, can symbolizing professional practices/values be used to reverse the leadership problems that seem to dominate principals leadership practices in Cross River State? 2. METHODOLOGY This study adopted a correlation survey design to find out the relationship existing between transformational leadership attribute of symbolizing professional practices/values and excellence in the management of personnel by secondary school principals. The study was carried out in Cross River State. Cross River State is made up of 18 local government areas, and is divided into three senatorial districts, the north, central and southern senatorial districts, representing three education zones. The education zones therefore are the northern education zone with its zonal education head office located in Ogoja council secretariat; comprising 72 public secondary schools, 72 principals and 1465 teachers. The central education zone has its head office located in Ikom council secretariat, comprising 74 public secondary schools, 74 principals and 1749 teachers. The southern educational zone has 86 public secondary schools, 86 principals and 2168 teachers, with its head office in Calabar Municipal council secretariat. This brings to a total of 232 public secondary schools in the three education zones, with 232 principals and 5382 teachers. Although teachers were not studied here, but were used in this study to respond to questionnaire items as they are closer to the principals and will give the required information concerning their principal's leadership practices on personnel management than the principals themselves. The population of this study comprised all public secondary school principals and teachers in Cross River State. There are a total of 232 principals and 5382 teachers in public secondary schools. All principals were used as intact population to respond to questionnaire items, while teachers were randomly selected to respond to questionnaire items on behalf of their school principal. Only public secondary schools were used for the study since the government education policies and regulations are more binding on them than on the private schools. The entire 232 principals of public secondary schools were used as purposive sample for the study because they met the criteria for the study, 375 teachers were randomly selected out of 5382 to respond to questionnaire items for the study, using cluster sampling technique. Here, 20% of the schools from 232 schools were randomly selected, from 14 schools in northern education zone, 15 and 17 from the central and southern education zones respectively. Therefore, 46 schools in all were randomly selected, to select teachers for the study. Thereafter, 35% of teachers from 5382 were randomly selected to ensure equal representation from each strata for the study, through balloting. 375 teachers in all were selected, in the process of administering the instruments, three questionnaires were lost, only 372 were retrieved and used. The researcher developed two structured questionnaire titled transformational leadership practices Questionnaire (TLPQ) The TLPQ has one variable known as symbolizing professional practices/value, with five items and Excellence in Personnel Management questionnaire ESPMQ with five clusters namely; communication, caring, creating opportunities credible leadership and creating a unique school leadership. The two structured questionnaire were administered to the same group of respondents.

4 82 International Journal of Operations System and Human Resource Management Both instruments have a total of 24 items with the following response mode: Strongly agree (SA) = 4points Agree (A) = 3 Disagree (D) = 2 Strongly Disagree (SD) = 1 The data collected for the study were analyzed using mean, standard deviation and Pearson Product Moment Correlation Coefficient to answer the research questions. While multiple regression analysis was used to test the null hypothesis at alpha.05 level of significance (see interpretation of results according to criterion measure by Nwana, 1982 on Table 1. Table 1 Interpretation of Result The Table below was used to interpret the result in accordance with criterion measure by Nwana (1982). Correlation Table 1 Interpretation Very high relationship High relationship Medium relationship Low relationship Very low relationship 3. RESULTS Table 2 Mean and Standard Deviation Scores for Principals (N = 232) and Teachers (N = 372) on Symbolizing Professional Practices/Values Professional Practices/Values X SD X SD X SD 1 Imposes his own ideas on personnel A 2 Encourages inter-class visits for A exchange of ideas 3 Personally visits our classrooms to A assist us in areas of difficulty 4 Helps us work fast by actively seeking A different interpretations on new concepts 5 Keeps personnel on task while taking into A consideration individual contributions on any issues. Cluster Mean A

5 Transformational Leadership Practice of Symbolizing Professional Practice/Values Information on Table 2 above shows the mean and standard deviation for principals and teachers for each of the items on professional professional/values. The mean and standard deviation for each item and cluster range from = X = 2.77_3.05 and.97_.72 for principals and X = and standard deviation for teachers with overall X = and standard deviation The cluster mean score of X = 2.86, SD =.53 for principals and X = 3.31, SD =.36 for teachers, with overall cluster mean score of X = 3.14, SD =.53. The results show that the respondents agree to the utilization of transformational leadership attribute of professional practices/values by secondary school principals in Cross River State, but they do so to a low extent. Table 3 Mean and Standard Deviation Scores of Principals (N = 232) and Teachers (N = 372) on the Attribute of Excellence (Communication) in Personnel Management Communication X SD X SD X SD A 1 Understands that communication A is very crucial in leadership 2 Is an effective communicator for the A success of the school 3 Facilitates communication between A the school and outsiders. 4 Shares professional background A information with all personnel from time to time 5 Communicates diligently with personnel A on regular basis Cluster Mean A The information on Table 3 above, presents the mean and standard deviation score of principals and teachers on the attribute of excellence in communication in personnel management. The result shows that the means and standard deviation of principals on communication ranged from X = , SD =.66.80, while the mean and standard deviation for teachers ranged from X = , SD =.60 70, with the overall mean and standard deviation for the two groups for each item ranging from X = , SD = The cluster mean for principal was X = 3.23, SD =.48 while that of the teachers were = 3.37, SD =.32, with the overall cluster mean and standard deviation for the two groups X = 3.31, SD =.39. This result shows that this construct of excellence (communication) is utilized by secondary school principals, but to a low extent. This was clearly shown in their various mean and standard deviation scores, which is slightly above the criterion mean score P > The result on Table 4 above shows the mean and standard deviation score of principals and teachers on each of the items on the cluster of excellence on caring. The result shows that the mean and standard deviation scores ranged from X = , SD = The mean and standard deviation score for teachers ranged from X = , SD =.59.59, with the overall mean and

6 84 International Journal of Operations System and Human Resource Management SD scores for the two groups on the same table to be , SD = The cluster mean and SD for principals was X 3.02, SD =.6o, while those of teachers were X 3.36, SD.37, with the overall cluster mean and SD of X 3.31, SD =.39. The result shows that this attribute of excellence is utilized by secondary school principals in Cross River State, but to a low extent. Table 4 Mean and Standard Deviation Scores of Principals (N = 232) and Teachers (N = 372) on the Attribute of Excellence (Caring) Caring. X SD X SD X SD 6 Is passionate in carrying out his duties A 7 Is passionate in carrying out his duties A 8 Is worthy of everyone's support A 9 Is our understanding leader A Cluster Mean A Table 5 Mean and Standard Deviation Scores of Principals (N = 232) and Teachers (N = 372) on Creating Opportunities Creating Opportunities X SD X SD X SD 10 Creates a friendly working environment A for effective teaching 11 Publicly recognize the contribution of A parents in the school 12 Creates opportunities for staff personnel A involves in all school's activities Cluster A Table 5 above shows the mean and standard deviation scores of principals and teachers on excellence attribute of creating opportunities. The results show the mean and SD of X = SD = for principals and X = SD = for teachers. The overall mean and SD were X = SD = for the two groups. The cluster mean and SD of X = 3.21, SD = 48 for principals and X = 3.21, SD =.40 for teachers with overall cluster of X = 3.29, SD =.43 for the two groups. This result reveals that this attribute of excellence isutilized by principals in Cross River State, but to a low extent. This was shown in their mean and SD score to be P > The information on Table 6 above shows mean and standard deviation of principals and teachers for the attribute of excellence on creating a unique school culture. The mean for each item for creating a unique school culture ranges from X = 3.13, SD = for principals and

7 Transformational Leadership Practice of Symbolizing Professional Practice/Values X = , SD = for teachers, with X = and SD = for the two groups. The cluster mean and SD = 2.90, SD =.70 for principals and X = 3.26, SD =.53 of teachers, with overall cluster X = 3.12, SD =. 63. This shows that the respondents agree to the utilization of this attribute of excellence by principals in Cross River State, but they do so to a low extent. This was shown in the mean and Standard deviation scores which was P > Table 6 Mean and Standard Deviation of Principals (N = 232) and Teachers (N = 372) for Excellence Attribute of Creating a Unique School Culture Creating a unique school culture X SD X SD X SD 13 Encourages team approach to problem A -solving in the school 14 Conducts in-service training on A methodologies of teaching from time to time 15 Gives awards to staff personnel in A the area of leadership Cluster Mean A Table 7 Mean and Standard Deviation Scores of Principals (N = 232) and Teachers (N = 372) of Excellence in Credible Leadership Credible leadership X SD X SD X SD 13 Encourages team approach to problem A -solving in the school 16 Gives awards to personnel in the area A of professional conduct 17 Involves all personnel in decision-making in the school 18 Believes that every personnel in the school A has the capacity to be a leader 19 Guides us to work effectively towards A achieving the desired results. Cluster Mean A

8 86 International Journal of Operations System and Human Resource Management Information on Table 7 above presents mean and standard deviation scores of principals and teachers on credible leadership. The mean and standard deviation range from X = , SD = for principals and X , SD = for teachers, with mean and standard deviation for the two groups ranging from X = , SD = The cluster mean and SD for principals were X 3.09, SD =.58 and X = 3.32, SD =.40 for teachers, with the overall cluster mean and SD of X = 3.23, SD.49. The results revealed that respondents agree to the utilization of this attribute of excellence but to a low extent. This result may be so since the principals have to communicate through controlling, supervising and giving directives in the daily administration of the school. However, there were variations in the standard deviation in the scores of principals and teacher s responses for the transformational leadership attribute of symbolizing professional practices/values. Data collected on the extent of the relationship between transformational leadership attribute of symbolizing professional practice/values were correlated with data collected on the attribute of excellence in personnel management, using Pearson product moment correlation coefficient. The summary and interpretation of the result is shown on Table 8 below. The result of the response to question 2 on Table 8, shows that the correlation coefficient (r) is The result indicates that there is a low relationship between symbolizing professional practices/values and excellence in the management of personnel by secondary school principals in Cross River State, although there exista relationship. Table 8 Presentation of the Results of Correlation Coefficient(r) and its Interpretation According to Nwana (1982) on Professional Practices and Values (PPV) Variables Correlation Interpretation Professional Practices 0.34 Low relationship and Values (PPV) Again, to further explore the significance of their low relationship, a corresponding Ho2 is tested as shown on Table 9 below. Ho2. There is no significant relationship between symbolizing professional practices and values and excellence in the management of personnel by secondary school principals. Table 9 Multiple Regression Analysis of Professional Practice/Values Variable Multiple R 2 R 2 B BETA Standard %Variance F-value F-Critical R2 Change E Added p < 0.05 Professional (PPV) On Table 9 is the result for symbolizing professional practices/values and excellence in the management of personnel by secondary school principals. The result shows that professional practices and value has R 2 change of , showing a predictive power of 3.21 percent for attainment of excellence in the management of personnel by secondary school principals. The result on the table also shows that the observed F-value is The critical F-value for professional practices and

9 Transformational Leadership Practice of Symbolizing Professional Practice/Values values for 1 and 603 degree of freedom (df) at 0.05 level of significance is Since the observed F-value of me 3.21 of the variance added to the total variance in the attainment of excellence in the management of personnel is higher than the critical F-value of 9.85, then the null hypothesis in respect of symbolizing professional practices and values is rejected. This result therefore suggests that there exists a relationship between symbolizing professional practices and values. 4. DISCUSSION The result revealed a low but significant relation between professional practices/values and excellence in the management of personnel by secondary school principals in Cross River State. This means that commitment to professional practices/values in schools by the principals will result in positive impact in the management of personnel. The result is corroborated by Sharrat and Sharrat(2006), when they argued that such practices as symbolizing professional practices/values may enhance teachers personal beliefs about their own capabilities and the sense of self-efficacy and thereby contribute to teachers day-to-day enthusiasm. This is because, it will also help create perceptions of a dynamic changing jobs. It becomes necessary that people who have been properly trained for the job of principals through capacity-building programmes in professional practices/value otherwise described as self-modeling should be given priority when appointing school principals. This is because this eventually will impact positively on personnel management. This in essence means that when one is trained and equipped with skill in professional practices/values, one will be equipped to practice self-modeling or adopt professional practices approach to lead others, thereby leading to excellence in personnel management. The result therefore brings to the fore the need for principals to be trained to develop skills in symbolizing professional practices and values. Stressing the importance of symbolizing professional practice/values and excellence in personnel management, Leithwood, Jantzi and Steinbach; and Devany in Lieberman (1996) agreed that professional practices/values is role-modeling. They maintained that it is one of the six important areas in which school principals might reasonably demonstrate transformational leadership practices at the school level as this eventually will affect personnel management in schools. 5. CONCLUSION The study examined the relationship between transformational leadership practices and excellence in the management of personnel by secondary school principals. It was concluded based on the findings of the study that; (1) That symbolizing professional practices/values was utilized by secondary school principals in the management of personne,l but to a low extent. (2) There exists a significant relationship between symbolizing professional practices/values and excellence in the management of personnel by secondary school principals. 6. RECOMMENDATIONS From the findings of the study, the following recommendations were made: (1) Government, corporate bodies and individuals need to provide sponsorship to train school administrators to acquire skills in transformational leadership. (2) The government should encourage in-service training for serving principals. This will impact positively on their leadership in practices.

10 88 International Journal of Operations System and Human Resource Management (3) Schools also should encourage professional development of school principals through financial assistance to those in need, from internally generated revenue. (4) Government should mount and encourage capacity-building programmes in leadership training, especially in transformational leadership. Curriculum planners should include transformational leadership concepts in thecurriculum for all levels of professional education training. REFERENCES [1] Kelly, M.L. (2007), Academic Advisers as Transformational Leaders. Kansas City: Kelly or pp [2] Leithwood, K. and Jantzi, D. (2000), The Relative Effects of Practical and Teacher Sources of Leadership on Students Engagement with School. Educational Administration Quarterly, 35 (Supplemental), pp [3] In Duke, K.E. (2005), Principals' Practices Regarding Teacher Participation in School Decisionmaking: A Dissertation Submitted to the Faculty of the Graduate School of the University of Minnesota, (unpublished). [3] Leithwood, K. Jontzi, P. and Steinbach, R. (1999), Changing Leadership for Changing Times. Buckinghaum; Philadelphia: Open University Press. [4] Okon, J.E. (2008), Demographic Variables and Conflict Resolution Options of Secondary School Principals in Cross River State. (Nigeria: Unpublished Ph.D. Thesis) [5] Sharrat, L. and Sharrat, M. (2006), The Impact of Teachers Learning on Students Literacy Achievement. College Quarterly, 9(4).

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