ERIC Number: ED375527
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Apr
The Leadership Challenge: A National Study of Women Superintendents.
Wesson, Linda Hampton; Grady, Marilyn L.
Recently, serious questions have been raised about the efficacy of the traditional leadership model, which relies on rigid hierarchical structure, competition, and control. This paper presents findings of a study that investigated the leadership practices of rural and urban female superintendents in the United States. The study was two-fold: (1) a sample of women superintendents about their perceived sources of job satisfaction, the benefits accrued on the job, their sense of self-fulfillment in the workplace, and personal strengths they brought to the job; and (2) the leadership practices of these superintendents were assessed using the Leadership Practices Inventory-Self (Kouzes and Posner, 1988). Data were obtained from telephone interviews with 30 rural and 21 urban women superintendents and from a survey of 249 female superintendents. A total of 174 surveys were returned. Findings indicate that most of the rural and urban women administrators had been hired as change agents, and they described their leadership styles in similar ways. They saw themselves as being successful builders of collegial-collaborative organizations. Both groups operationalized leadership skills that fit a new leadership paradigm, which values change and connectiveness. Both groups received job satisfaction from their leadership practices, in particular, the human relations aspect. One table is included. Contains 26 references. (LMI)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (New Orleans, LA, April 4-8, 1994).