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A MODEL FOR EFFECTIVE LEADERSHIP IN COMMUNITY COLLEGES
COMMITTED TO CONTINUOUS QUALITY IMPROVEMENT
BARBARA ROBINSON SLOAN
A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF
DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
The support and assistance of many individuals helped make this research project
possible. I greatly appreciate the encouragement and guidance of my chair, Dr. Dale F.
Campbell, who supported me throughout this study. My appreciation also goes to Dr.
James L. Doud, Dr. David S. Honeyman, and Dr. Richard K. Scher, my supervisory
committee members. Each provided support, expertise, and guidance as I developed and
shaped this study. Thanks also go to all the professors with whom I studied over the last
few years; they generously shared their time both in and after classes. For all I learned
and continue to lear from them, I extend my appreciation.
Special thanks go to my colleagues and mentors in the community college system.
Particular thanks go to Dr. Robert K. Myers, Dr. Heijia L. Wheeler, and Dr. Debra
Austin, all of whom have been both friends and mentors who encouraged and supported
me throughout the years. I am also appreciative of the many, many colleagues at Santa Fe
Community College and at Tallahassee Community College, many of whom have also
taken or are taking this journey, and all of whom have patiently and enthusiastically
encouraged me. Special thanks go to Cynthia Kachik, who processed the various OPQ
reports used in this study.
Without the loving support of friends and family, this project would have never
begun or come to completion. To friends who have watched over me and encouraged me
to finish so that I could "be more fun again," I am grateful. To my three children, all of
whom have entered or completed their own degree programs since I began this venture, I
am humbly thankful. Their patience, love, and support have been immeasurable. My
husband has been a supportive partner, never complaining about the innumerable
weekends that I stayed buried in reading or glued to the computer screen.
Most importantly, I owe all I have accomplished to my wonderful mother. She
has been the example I follow, and her belief in me has always been absolute. She taught
me to work hard and to be grateful for what I have and for who I am.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
ACKN OW LED GM ENTS ............................................................. .............................. ii
A B ST R A C T ................................................................................ ...................... .......... vii
IN TR O D U C TIO N ........................................................................... .............................
Background and Rationale......................................................... ......................... 3
Continuous Quality Improvement............................................... ........................ 5
Leadership Studies................................................................. ........................ 7
State ent of the Problem ............................................................. ....................... 9
Purpose of the Study........................................ ....................... ........................ 10
Significance of the Study........................ ................................... ....................... 12
Definition of Terms ............................................................................ ........... 13
L im station s ................................................................................ ............................. 14
Sum m ary .................................................. ......................... .............. ......... 14
REVIEW OF LITERATURE ................................................... ........................16
Continuous Quality Improvement................................................ 17
Theoretical Basis for Quality Management............................ ........................... 17
History of Quality in the United States.............................................................. 19
Common Quality Principles.................................................. 21
Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award....................................... ........... .... 22
Appropriateness of Continuous Quality Improvement to Education........................ 23
Implementation in Education................................................. 27
Studies of CQI in Educational Institutions ....................... ............. ........... ... 28
Studies of Barriers to Implementation................................... ........................ 35
The Malcolm Baldrige Award Criteria in Education..................... ........... .... 41
Summary of Continuous Quality Improvement in Education.................................. 43
Study of Leadership ................................................................... ....................... 44
Theories of Leadership ................................................................. 45
Leadership and Organizational Change............................. ...................... 50
Leadership in Educational Institutions....................... ......................... 56
Studies of Community College Leadership......................... ............ .......... ... 58
Leadership Team s ........................ ....................................................... 69
Continuous Quality Improvement Leadership.............................................. 72
Studies of Leadership and Continuous Quality Improvement................................ 74
Summary of Review of Literature ................................... ........................ 77
Purpose of the Study ................................................................ ......................... 79
R research Problem ..................................................................... ........................ 81
R research D esign........................................................................ ........................ 83
R research Instrum ents................................................................. .......... ............. 86
Population ................................................................................. ............................. 90
D ata C collection .......................................................................... ............................. 92
D ata A analysis ................................................................... ......... ...................... 93
R E SU LT S ..........................................................................................................................96
Institutional Self-Assessment................................................. 96
C ase Study O ne........................................................................ ............................. 104
Situational V ariables............................... ............................................ ........ 104
Personality A ttributes............................................................ ......... ............. 107
Leadership Styles ...................................... ......... 116
Team Types....................................................................... ......................... 122
Intervening V ariables....................... .. ..................................................... 126
Case Study Tw o............................................................ .................................. 130
Situational Variables .................................... ......... 130
Personality A ttributes........................................................................................ 134
Leadership Styles ...................................... ......... 143
Team T ypes......................................................................... ........................ 148
Intervening V ariables.......................................................... ........................ 151
Cross-Case Analysis ............................................ 157
Situational V ariables........................................................ .. ......... .............. 157
Personality A ttributes........................................................... ............................. 160
Leadership Styles .................................................. 168
T eam Types........................................................................ ........................ 172
Intervening Variables ..................................... .......... 175
CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS ................... ........................178
C onclusions......................................................... .................................................. 179
Situational V ariables............................................................................ 180
Personality Attributes of Presidents and Senior leaders....................................... 181
Leadership Styles of Presidents and Senior Leaders ......................................... 187
Team Types of Presidents and Senior Leaders.................................................... 188
Intervening Variables................................. ................ ....... 189
Findings Related to Previous Research......................................................... 190
L im stations ................................................................................ ............................ 194
Theoretical Construct ...................................... ........ 195
Implications for Practice......................................................................... 199
Recommendations for Further Study .................................................................. 200
A INSTITUTIONAL SELF ASSESSMENT .......................... ............................202
Letter to Participate.......................................... ............................................... 203
Self-Assessment Survey Instructions................ .......................................... 204
Institutional Self-Assessment Instrument ......................................................... .... 205
Institutional Self-Assessment Response Sheet ............................................... 209
Background Information Sheet....................................................... ........................ 210
Informed Consent Process for Adult Participants Form for Baldrige Survey............ 213
B OCCUPATIONAL PERSONALITY QUESTIONNAIRE ......................................214
Letter to Participate.................................................................. ............ ........... 215
On Line Instructions Sample Email........................................................... 217
Informed Consent Process for Adult Participants for OPQ...................................... 218
Work Profile Informed Consent Process for Adult Participants............................... 219
C OCCUPATIONAL PERSONALITY QUESTIONNAIRE RESULT SAMPLES.....220
Letter Accompanying Results.......................................... .............. 221
Structure of the OPQ Concept Model............................... ......... ........... ... 223
Sam ple Individual Results ................................................... ........................... 224
Leadership Styles Descriptors........................................ ............ 225
Associate Styles Descriptors............................................ ............ 226
Sample Team Types Results........................................ ............ .. 227
D INTERVIEW WITH PRESIDENTS ........................................................228
E-mail Request for Presidential Interview.......................... ............. ............ 229
Follow Up Interview Questions.................................................... .... 230
President Review of Interview ......................................... ............ 231
E INSTITUTIONAL SELF-ASSESSMENT RESULTS .............................................232
Quality Index Rating Sheet........................................ ........... .... 233
Rating Results for All Schools Combined............................................................... 234
Overall Frequency of Responses to Institutional Self-Assessment .......................... 235
LIST OF REFERENCES.................. ..............................................................238
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ...........................................................252
Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy
A MODEL FOR EFFECTIVE LEADERSHIP IN COMMUNITY COLLEGES
COMMITTED TO CONTINUOUS QUALITY IMPROVEMENT
Barbara Robinson Sloan
Chairman: Dale F. Campbell
Major Department: Educational Leadership, Policy and Foundations
To remain competitive in the future, community colleges must embrace change
and respond to worldwide influences. Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) is an
organizational and philosophical approach to addressing change through continuous
improvement, yet the successful implementation of CQI has been difficult for many
colleges. Proponents of CQI have emphasized the central importance of leadership, but
very little research has been conducted to explore what leadership attributes and styles
best complement a continuous quality organization. To address the complexities of
leadership and the leadership situation in a CQI college, this study considered multiple
criteria including the leadership situation and intervening variables affecting the
leadership situation as well as the personality attributes, leadership styles, and team styles
of the presidents and other senior leaders.
The purpose of this study was to develop a theoretical construct of effective
leadership in a community college that has adopted or wants to adopt the principles of
continuous quality improvement. Two institutions were identified as successful based on
an assessment of their degree of implementation of the Malcolm Baldrige Education
Criteria for Performance Excellence. The Occupational Personality Questionnaire (OPQ)
was used to determine the critical personality attributes, team types, and leadership styles
of the presidents and their senior team members. Questionnaires, institutional reports and
semi-structured interviews were used to understand the practices of the CEO's and to
explore the organizational structure.
The results of the study suggest a number of leadership traits and behaviors
important to successful implementation of CQI. Although CQI can be successful in
diverse environments, implementation requires a long-term commitment, as much as 10
to 15 years. The president should be committed to empowering others and should
embrace the concept of leadership in which leaders and followers exert mutual influence.
Cross-functional teams and horizontal work structures should be developed. A CQI
environment requires a relations-oriented leadership. The colleges studied exhibited a
high level of shared leadership; therefore, the leadership attributes of both presidents and
other college leaders were examined.
Community colleges, which enroll nearly 6 million students nationwide (U.S.
DOE, 2001), prospered in decades of dramatic growth. Now, they are a major sector of
higher education, and their leaders face new challenges as society and government turn to
community colleges for solutions to today's problems (Pierce & Pedersen, 1997).
Increasingly, community college leaders are expected to adapt their institutions to
the needs of a new society. They face increasing demands to tailor courses to the needs of
the workplace, to provide new delivery methods, and to address diverse learning styles
(Nunley, 2001). In the current context of continuous change and of the shift from an
industrial-based to an information-based economy, community colleges must be
structured to respond to a changed and changing environment (Rowley, 2001; Vaughan,
2000); they must be organized to address the factors of demand, competition, and quality
(Alfred & Carter, 2000); and they must be positioned to address the effects of
globalization (Levin, 2001). Community college faculty and administrators identified
funding workforce development, using outcome measures for accountability, and meeting
the cost of technology as critical issues facing their institutions (Campbell & Evans,
2001). To meet these challenges successfully, community college leaders must adopt new
organizational structures and develop a new understanding of leadership and the roles of
leaders (Cain, 1999; Pierce & Pedersen, 1997; Tiemey, 1999).
Townsend (2000) identified four values that determine educational policy: choice,
quality, efficiency, and equity. She stated that these values sometimes conflict with one
another. In the environment of demand for new services, limited resources, and possible
conflicts in values, community college leaders must seek ways to define institutional
roles and to focus on the community college's core mission of teaching and learning.
Over the last 10 years, a number of college and university leaders have turned to
the principles of total quality management (TQM) or continuous quality improvement
(CQI)' as a philosophical and structural base for addressing the challenges of changing
roles and organizational structures (Axland, 1992; Bonstingl, 2001; Holmes, 1997).
Benefits of CQI for educational institutions include applying quality principles to
teaching and learning, benchmarking, empowering individuals, emphasizing
improvement, and implementing change (Barth et al., 2000; Marchese, 1993). However,
CQI requires long-term commitment and is difficult to implement primarily because its
use requires a change in philosophical approach for all areas of an organization (Peterson,
Deming (1986), Juran (1989), and Crosby (1979), three major quality
management theorists, stressed the responsibility of top leadership in quality
organizations. Community college researchers (Fisher, J. L., 1993; Freed, 1998; Gratton,
1993; Seymour, 1992) have also described effective leadership as fundamental to
successful implementation of CQI. Despite the key role of leadership in organizations, no
clear understanding exists of what distinguishes effective leadership (Bennis & Nanus,
1997; Bimbaum, 1988; Elsner, 1984; Fisher, J. L. & Koch, 1996; Gratton, 1993). It is
still uncertain what styles and characteristics are needed to promote successful
implementation of CQI (Haire, 1997).
The purpose of this study was to develop a theoretical construct of effective
leadership for a community college that has adopted or wants to adopt the principles of
continuous quality improvement. The study presents a case analysis of leaders in colleges
that have demonstrated high levels of success in implementing CQI. The study examined
the personality and leadership traits and behaviors of key leaders as well as the situational
and intervening variables present in these colleges. Specifically, this study determined the
level of implementation of the 1998 Malcolm Baldrige Quality Award Education Criteria
for Performance Excellence in member institutions of the Continuous Quality
Improvement Network (CQIN). Using both quantitative and qualitative data, the study
then presented the personality attributes, leadership styles, and team profiles of the
presidents and senior team members in institutions that scored highest on the criteria. The
situational and intervening factors associated with successful implementation of CQI
were determined and explored. Based on the analysis of this data, a theoretical construct
for community college leadership in CQI colleges was developed.
Background and Rationale
Challenges to community colleges include increased demands for serving a
diverse student population, for minimizing the need for developmental education, for
providing new information and learning technologies, and for addressing unemployment
and workforce retraining needs (Alfred & Carter, 2000; Cohen & Brawer, 1994; Nunley,
2001; Wharton, 1997). In addition to these demands to expand educational roles,
community colleges leaders must also address the realities of changing student
'The terms TQM and CQI and CQA (Continuous Quality Assurance) are used interchangeably in this
study, reflecting the trend in educational literature to emphasize quality improvement and quality assurance
rather than management (Freed & Klugman, 1997).
expectations, reduced resources, increased accreditation requirements, and legislative
mandates for outcome-based accountabilities (Alfred & Carter, 2000; Nunley, 2001;
Rowley, 2001; Tuttle, 1994; Wharton, 1997).
Three of the problems that community college leaders must confront as they
prepare their institutions to meet these challenges are recognizing and addressing the
changes that must occur (Alfred & Carter, 2000; Leslie & Fretwell, 1996; Lorenzo &
Zajac, 1996), accommodating the shift from an industrial-based to an information-based
economy (Rowley, 2001), and addressing the effects of a global economy (Levin, 2001).
Carter and Alfred (1996) described the significant changes that colleges must undergo.
Colleges must shift their cultures from an ivory tower mentality to being service oriented;
leaders must abandon static structures in favor of dynamic relationships, and faculty must
replace discipline-focused, compartmentalized education with holistic, integrated
learning. Napier, Sidle, Sanaghan, and Reed (1998) said colleges are being pushed into
consumer-driven markets by the new information age. They believe the new technologies
will transform teaching, research, and delivery systems. Carter and Alfred (1996) claimed
that "today's challenges are significantly more turbulent and threatening than those faced
in the past" (p. 4). Raisman (1994) stated that planning for the future means planning
with state, national, and international environments in mind; community colleges that
focus only on the local community will end up reacting to trends that are reshaping their
communities rather than helping to plan the future of those communities. In addition, the
public expects higher education to provide its graduates with the skills and knowledge
necessary to compete in a rapidly changing and complex global job market (Fisher, M.
C., 1990; Hull & Souders, 1996; Jones, 1996). Graff(1995) described new workers as
"knowledge workers who must shift from reliance on manual skills to use of theoretical
and analytical knowledge that can be acquired only through formal schooling" (p. 5).
Lorenzo and LeCroy (1994) claimed that institutions that intend to remain competitive in
the information age must undergo fundamental reinvention. Napier et al. (1998)
described the transformation needed as a metamorphosis. Godbey (1993) stressed the
need for institutions to be agile, to be able to adapt new technologies, and to form new
partnerships in order to maintain and enhance the institution.
Levin (2001) studied seven institutions that have made progress in responding to
the various marketplace communities and stakeholders and found that often "a balanced
recognition of human achievement" (p. xx) was neglected. In order to survive,
community colleges must provide the best opportunities for student success and must
establish friendly relationships with other entities in the education market including other
educational systems; local, state, and federal governments and their agencies; local
communities and community organizations; and private funding organizations (Roueche
& Roueche, 2000).
Continuous Oualitv Improvement
Despite differences in purpose and structure between business and education,
successful business models have attracted the attention of higher education leaders.
Numbers of colleges are adapting the quality management approaches that successfully
transformed many American businesses (Horine & Hailey, 1995). The work of Deming
(1986), Juran (1989), and Crosby (1979) provided a theoretical and practical basis for
quality management in American business and industry. More recently these principles
have been adopted and adapted by educational institutions. Change and the use of data
are primary tenets of a quality organizational structure, and quality organizations stress
outputs and assessment. Burgdorf (1992) described continuous quality improvement as "a
customer-oriented philosophy of management that utilizes total employee involvement in
the relentless, daily search for improvement of quality of products and services through
the use of statistical methods, employee teams, and performance management" (p. 1).
Total quality is a systems approach to management that encompasses all levels of
an organization in a focused, ongoing effort to provide products or services that meet or
exceed customer demands. Leaders use quality tools to control costs, improve staff
productivity and service, and meet customers' expectations (Burgdorf, 1992). Because
CQI requires continuous assessment and improvement, it occurs in a climate of change
and requires changes in institutional culture (Freed, 1998). Because it is output driven, it
addresses demands for outcome-based accountabilities (Coleman, 1995).
The national standard for measuring the success of TQM in industry is the
Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA) (Juran, 1995). The United States
Congress passed legislation in 1987 that authorized the U.S. Department of Commerce to
develop the award. Public law 100-107 states, in part, that foreign competition has
challenged United States leadership in productivity and that poor quality has been a
primary cause. The law states that the award would help improve quality and productivity
in the United States by recognizing those companies that meet the rigorous standards of
the award (BNQP, 2001). Knotts, Parrish, and Evans (1993) concluded that business,
service, and industry leaders agree that the Baldrige Award provides the best framework
for a total quality management system.
Recently, Baldrige criteria were developed for education. The Malcolm Baldrige
National Quality Award Education Criteria for Performance Excellence were piloted in
1995 and revised in 1998. Educational institutions first became eligible to apply in 1999
(NIST, 1998). Like the criteria for business and industry, the criteria for education can be
used to guide and assess quality initiatives (Holmes, 1997; Moore, 1996; Paris, 1996;
Thompson, 1995). The criteria provide a means for an educational institution to be
measured on its successful implementation of quality principles. The educational award
criteria have been shown to be appropriate to the philosophy and goals of educational
institutions (Holmes, 1997; Moore, 1996; Thompson, 1995; Watwood, 1996; Winn &
Effective leadership is the key to successful implementation of TQM (Freed, Fife,
& Klugman, 1994; Leffel et al, 1991; Norton, 1994; Seymour 1992; Walton, 1986).
Quality theorists Deming (1986), Juran (1989), and Crosby (1979) emphasized the
importance of leadership in a quality organization. Unsuccessful implementation has
occurred primarily when top administrators are not involved in the processes (Satterlee,
1997). The CEO must play the role of the chief quality officer; must be directly involved
in the organization, both internally and externally; and must also delegate operations and
develop teams with leadership responsibilities (Peterson, 1993).
The proponents of CQI have stressed the importance of leadership, but the
leadership characteristics and abilities required for successful CQI implementation are
undefined (Culp 1992; Fisher, J. L. & Koch, 1996; Haire, 1997). Elsner (1984) stated that
by failing to define and characterize the kind of leadership needed for the 21st century,
the community college movement has failed to invest in its future. Birnbaum (1988)
claimed that there is no agreement on how to define or assess leadership. In her research
on leadership for the learning organization, Gratton (1993) identified a leadership crisis
and claimed that current concepts of leadership, "dominated by power and profit motifs,"
(p. 94) are outmoded. In 1997, Bennis and Nanus repeated their conclusions from 1985:
Decades of academic analysis have given us more than 850 definitions of
leadership. Literally thousands of empirical investigations of leaders have
been conducted in the last seventy-five years alone, but no clear and
unequivocal understanding exists as to what distinguishes leaders from
nonleaders, and perhaps more important, what distinguishes effective
leaders from ineffective leaders and effective organizations from
ineffective organizations. (p. 4)
Leadership studies have focused on particular traits, behaviors, or situations, or
they have examined leaders or groups of leaders who have been perceived to be effective
by other leaders or experts.
The confused state of the field [leadership research] can be attributed in
large part to the sheer volume of publications, the disparity of approaches,
the proliferation of confusing terms, the narrow focus of most research,
the preference for simplistic explanations, the high percentage of studies
on trivial questions, and the scarcity of studies using strong research
methods. (Yukl, 2001, pp. 423-24)
More recently, some leadership research has begun to address a combination of factors
that include the situation, the leader, the followers, and the culture and organizational
structure of an organization. Bass (1990) emphasized that factors affecting leadership
include leadership traits, situational effects, and the interaction of traits and situation.
"The similarities of results [in trait studies] make it reasonable to conclude that
personality traits differentiate leaders from followers, successful from unsuccessful
leaders, and high-level from low-level leaders" (p. 87). Yukl (2001) suggested that the
various lines of research need to converge and that the various approaches should be
viewed as part of a larger network of interacting variables. Yukl argued that leadership
characteristics and behaviors are both the independent and dependent variables and that
leaders affect and are affected by other variables. Yukl also recognized that situational
and intervening variables could mediate the effects of leader behavior and that an
institution's success criteria are another important factor.
The success of an institution involved in continuous quality improvement can be
determined using the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award Education Criteria
(Holmes, 1997; Moore, 1996; Paris, 1996; Thompson, 1995; Winn & Cameron, 1998).
The traits and leadership styles of the leaders as well as the situational and intervening
variables affecting leadership effectiveness in successful CQI institutions need to be
Statement of the Problem
To remain competitive in the future, community colleges must undergo
fundamental reinvention (Lorenzo & LeCroy, 1994). The current trends and demands in
society require agile institutions (Godbey, 1993) whose leaders can identify and respond
to globally connected communities (Levin, 2001; Schein, 1992). As society turns to the
community college for solutions to problems, the expectations for presidential leadership
have become complex, demanding, and sometimes contradictory (Pierce & Pedersen,
1997). Community colleges must be led by "exceptional leaders who can deal with
change and revitalize the institutions of America" (Roueche, Baker, & Rose, 1989, p. 10).
Continuous Quality Improvement is an organizational and philosophical approach
to addressing change through continuous improvement, yet the successful
implementation of CQI has been difficult for many institutions. Proponents of CQI have
emphasized the central importance of leadership in a CQI organization (Freed, et al 1994;
Leffel et al 1991; Norton, 1994; Seymour 1992; Walton, 1986). However, "very little
empirical evidence exists to help understand how leadership styles best complement and
assure success of CQI implementation" (Haire, 1997, p. 2). Jameson and Soule (1991)
noted that over the past years it has become apparent that the knowledge of leadership
styles was not sufficient to meet the demands of today's management innovations, such
as TQM and other strategies. Bass (1990) and Yukl (2001) have argued that leadership
studies must broaden, rather than narrow, the factors considered.
Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this study was to develop a theoretical construct of effective
leadership in a community college that has adopted or wants to adopt the principles of
continuous quality improvement. The study presents a case analysis of leaders in colleges
that have demonstrated success as measured by the Baldrige Education Award criteria.
This study explored leadership characteristics and behaviors as well as situational and
intervening factors in institutions that have committed to the principles of CQI. The
major research questions that were addressed in the study are as follows:
* Is there a difference in the situational variables in colleges with similar levels of
implementation of CQI?
* Is there a difference in the personality traits of leaders in colleges with similar levels
of implementation of CQI?
* Is there a difference in the leadership styles used by leaders in colleges with similar
levels of implementation of CQI?
* Is there a difference in the team types used by leaders in colleges with similar levels
of implementation of CQI?
* Is there a difference in the intervening variables affecting CQI implementation in
colleges with similar levels of implementation of CQI?
This study determined the leadership traits and styles found in presidents and
senior team members of institutions that have demonstrated effective implementation of
CQI strategies. Situational and intervening factors were also identified and explored.
Specifically, this study determined the level of implementation of the 1998 Malcolm
Baldrige Quality Award Education Criteria for Performance Excellence in member
institutions of the Continuous Quality Improvement Network. The colleges with the
highest performance were selected for further study. Both quantitative and qualitative
inquiry methods were used to answer the research questions. The Occupational
Personality Questionnaire was used to determine the critical traits, team types, and
leadership styles of the leaders and their senior team members. Questionnaires,
institutional reports, and other documents were used to gather information about the
situational and intervening factors that are associated with successful implementation of
CQI. Semi-structured interviews were used to further explore the contextual conditions.
Based on the analysis of this data, a theoretical construct for community college
leadership in CQI organizations was developed.
This study explored the nature of leadership exhibited by presidents in community
colleges that have demonstrated successful implementation of continuous quality
improvement principles. The research instruments included the Baldrige Quality Index
Rating Self-Assessment Survey; the Occupational Personality Questionnaire (OPQ)
developed by Saville and Holdsworth, Limited (SHL) in 1984; background
questionnaires profiling the institution, the president, and senior team members; analysis
of college documents; and individual interviews. A detailed description of the
methodology is presented in Chapter 3.
Significance of the Study
Current knowledge of leadership styles is not sufficient to meet the demands of
today's management innovations such as TQM (Jameson & Soule, 1991). Many
researchers (Bass, 1990; Bennis & Nanus, 1997; Bimbaum, 1988; Eisner, 1984; Fisher, J.
L. & Koch, 1996; Gratton, 1993; Yukl, 2001) have stated the need for a more complete or
comprehensive study of leadership.
Studies of CQI in community colleges have often focused on levels of
implementation (De Los Santos, 1996; Fallo, 1997; Paris, 1996) or on the appropriateness
of CQI to educational institutions (Carpino, 1995; Zagorski, 1994). Only a few studies
have focused on leadership in CQI colleges (Brigham & Carusone, 1996). Neither Lappas
(1996) nor Haire (1997) found any correlation between transformational leadership styles
and continuous quality improvement efforts. Kyle's (1995) results did not show a strong
relationship between the visionary leader and a total quality culture. Lockwood (1995)
found a significant relationship between the frequency of lateral decision-making of
academic deans and a stated commitment to total quality in a community college.
Lockwood indicated that further research on decision-making in total quality institutions
is needed. There has been no study that has focused on leadership in institutions with a
high level of quality implementation or that has examined a broad range of factors
The results of this research will enrich the existing body of knowledge about
leadership and quality theory and will provide a baseline of information for further
research. This study adds to the theoretical knowledge of leadership, organizational
change, and team functions, and it offers a new approach for studying successful leaders
by selecting those to be studied based on institutional success. The results should also be
of interest to practitioners who wish to implement CQI in their institutions.
Definition of Terms
Total Oualitv Management is a management philosophy that focuses on
developing, maintaining, and adapting processes that promote continuous improvement
of all aspects of the organization in order to meet a clearly defined vision based on
Continuous Quality Improvement is sometimes regarded as the processes
involved in improving quality, but it is most often used interchangeably with total quality
management. Continuous Quality Improvement is the term for TQM more commonly
used in institutions of higher education.
Leadership has been defined in terms of individual traits and behaviors, influence
over others, interactions with others, and responses to the situation or environment. This
study sought to explore these various concepts of leadership within a CQI organization.
Personality is that which is concerned with a person's typical or preferred ways of
behaving, thinking, and feeling (Saville & Holdsworth, 1996, p. 1-4).
Leadership Attributes are those personality traits relevant to effective leadership
(Saville & Holdsworth, 1996, p. 10-5).
Leadership/Associate Styles are the result of a combination of attributes. They
indicate the behavior of an individual in vertical relationships with supervisors and with
subordinates (Saville & Holdsworth, 1996, p. 10-7).
Team Types identify the roles that individuals are most likely to assume when
they are part of a group or team (Saville & Holdsworth, 1996, p. 10-5).
Leadership Situational Variables consist of the contextual and organizational
conditions that exist within a leadership setting.
Leadership Intervening Variables concern internal or external interventions that
the leader can influence.
The target population was limited to the member community colleges of the
Continuous Quality Improvement Network. The case studies were further limited to the
presidents and senior leaders in the two colleges that scored highest on the Self-
Assessment survey. The Self-Assessment instrument, the Occupational Personality
Questionnaire, and the interviews were all self-reporting instruments. Although no
conclusions were drawn from any information obtained from only one source in the case
study, the self-report instruments were subject to individual response errors. The
conclusions are based on qualitative analysis and cannot be generalized to other
Community colleges face new challenges as society, government, and industry
look for solutions to today's problems within a context of continuous change and of a
shift from an industrial-based to an information-based economy (Rowley, 2001). In
recent years, several colleges have adopted the principles and practices of total quality
management as the framework for organizational change. Total Quality Management
provides the flexibility and tools that colleges need to adapt and remain flexible, and thus
viable (Godbey, 1993). The successful implementation of CQI principles can be
measured using the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award Education Criteria for
Performance Excellence (Holmes, 1997; Moore, 1996; Thompson, 1995; Watwood,
1996; Winn & Cameron, 1998).
Proponents of CQI have stressed the importance of leadership in successful
implementation, but the leadership characteristics and abilities required for successful
CQI implementation are undefined (Culp 1992; Fisher, J. L. & Koch, 1996; Haire, 1997).
For this study data were collected to develop a theoretical construct that identifies the
leadership traits, team types, and leadership styles that are present in presidents and other
senior leaders in colleges that have successfully implemented CQI in particular settings.
This construct adds to the theoretical knowledge of leadership, organizational change,
and team functions. It should also be of interest to practitioners who wish to implement
CQI in their institutions or who are interested in the influence of situational variables on
REVIEW OF LITERATURE
This chapter includes a review of the literature on applying TQM/CQI principles
in an academic setting as well as a review of the literature on leadership theory. The first
section examines the theoretical and historical basis for the quality movement in the
United States, the common principles of the quality process, and the development and use
of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA). The first section also
examines the appropriateness of CQI to education, studies of implementation of CQI in
education, and studies of barriers to implementation. Both the theoretical support and
successful practice of CQI in education and the concerns and cautions were examined.
The development and use of the MBNQA in education was also described. A review of
the literature on the use and appropriateness of the award criteria was included.
The second section examines leadership theory and studies of the application of
leadership theory to higher education and to implementation of continuous quality
improvement in higher education institutions. This section also reviews studies of
community college leadership including the theoretical basis for leadership
characteristics and abilities needed for future community college leaders. This section
also examines theories and principles of change in an organization and the theory and
practice of team leadership, particularly in continuous quality improvement
Continuous Ouality Improvement
Theoretical Basis for Quality Management
The principles underlying the structural and philosophical approaches to quality
management in the United States are rooted in the works of three major theorists, W.
Edwards Deming, Dr. J. M. Juran, and Philip B. Crosby. Deming first worked with
Japanese businesses in the 1950s and became recognized in Japan as the primary
contributor to the improvement of the Japanese economy. Deming's book, Out of the
Crisis, (1986) written to transform American management, was based on 14 points that
"apply anywhere, to small organizations as well as to large ones, to the service industry
as well as to manufacturing" (p. 23).
1. Create constancy of purpose toward improvement of product and
service, with the aim to become competitive and to stay in
business, and to provide jobs.
2. Adopt the new philosophy. We are in a new economic age.
Western management must awaken to the challenge, must learn
their responsibilities, and take on leadership for change.
3. Cease dependence on inspection to achieve quality. Eliminate the
need for inspection on a mass basis by building quality into the
product in the first place.
4. End the practice of awarding business on the basis of price tag.
Instead, minimize total cost. Move toward a single supplier for any
one item, on a long-term relationship of loyalty and trust.
5. Improve constantly and forever the system of production and
service, to improve quality and productivity, and thus constantly
6. Institute training on the job.
7. Institute leadership. The aim of supervision should be to help
people and machines and gadgets to do a better job. Supervision of
management is in need of overhaul, as well as supervision of
8. Drive out fear, so that everyone may work effectively for the
9. Break down barriers between departments. People in research,
design, sales, and production must work as a team, to foresee
problems of production and in use that may be encountered with
the product or service.
10. Eliminate slogans, exhortations, and targets for the work force
asking for zero defects and new levels of productivity. Such
exhortations only create adversarial relationships, as the bulk of the
causes of low quality and low productivity belong to the system
and thus lie beyond the power of the work force.
11. Eliminate work standards (quota) on the factory floor. Substitute
leadership. Eliminate management by objective. Eliminate
management by numbers, numerical goals. Substitute leadership.
12. Remove barriers that rob the hourly worker of his right to pride of
workmanship. The responsibility of supervisors must be changed
from sheer numbers to quality. Remove barriers that rob people in
management and in engineering of their right to pride of
workmanship. This means, inter alia, abolishment of the annual or
merit rating and of management by objective.
13. Institute a vigorous program of education and self-improvement.
14. Put everybody in the company to work to accomplish the
transformation. The transformation is everybody's job. (pp. 23-24)
Deming (1986) stressed controlling work processes using statistical thinking; he
developed a system to distinguish acceptable variation from problematic variation, and he
connected success to doing things right the first time, eliminating rework. Deming argued
that success is not based on best efforts alone. He believed that people also need to know
what to do, and leaders have to assume the responsibility for the drastic changes required.
Deming's method requires constant assessment and improvement as well as a breaking
down of barriers between workers and managers.
Juran also spent time working with the Japanese, providing training courses in
managing for quality. His book, Juran on Leadershin for Quality. (1989) was written to
provide leaders with strategies to attain quality through the use of three processes: quality
planning, quality control, and quality improvement (p. 20). Juran also recognized that
managing for quality requires fundamental change, "virtually a change of culture" (p.
321). Juran warned against mandating change; instead, he advised managers to develop
practices to motivate participation in a positive way. Practices he advocated included
participation, recognition, and communication (p. 433-437).
Crosby (1979) stressed organizing and motivating for quality. "Quality
management is a systematic way of guaranteeing that organized activities happen the way
they are planned. It is a management discipline concerned with preventing problems from
occurring by creating the attitudes and controls that make prevention possible" (p. 22). In
Quality Without Tears (1984), Crosby explained the four absolutes of quality:
conformance to requirements; prevention; zero defects; and the price of nonconformance.
According to Crosby (1988), successful companies have five characteristics: "people do
things right routinely; growth is profitable and steady; customer needs are anticipated;
change is planned and managed; and people are proud to work there" (p. 16). Managers
must see quality as an asset and must implement the four absolutes.
These three theorists differ somewhat in their interpretations of total quality
management, but all three cite the need for major change and the absolute commitment of
History of Oualitv in the United States
Juran (1995) described the development of managing for quality in the United
States. American colonists followed the European practice of master craftsmen training
apprentices. Quality was determined through inspection of the product by the master,
who supervised the creation of products for local customers. Managing for quality
through product inspection continued as the industrial revolution began in the nineteenth
century. In the late nineteenth century, American businesses adopted the scientific
management system of Frederick W. Taylor. To increase productivity without increasing
the number of skilled craftsman, Taylor separated product planning from product
development. However, the distancing of the craftsman from the final product and the
evolution to processes using semiskilled and unskilled workers negatively affected
quality. Departmental inspectors replaced master craftsmen, and products were made for
unknown customers. Employee morale and quality declined. Inspection departments had
to be developed to assure that faulty products were not sent to market.
Managing for quality began to shift from inspection to statistical quality control
(SQC) in the mid-1920s, but the major impact of SQC did not occur until World War II
(Juran, 1995) when quality began to be viewed "as a distinct management responsibility
and as an independent function" (Garvin, 1988, p. 5). During this era, mathematical and
statistical tools, such as analysis of variability, statistical sampling techniques, and
Statistical Process Control (SPC), were developed (Garvin, 1988). Specialists and
engineers were hired to manage quality control departments, and these departments were
given a high status in company hierarchies. However, acute shortages of goods after
World War II shifted emphasis to meeting delivery schedules, and quality suffered
During the second half of the twentieth century, forces emerged that challenged
the quality of U.S. products and shifted emphasis to quality assurance (Juran, 1995). The
growth of consumer grievances and consumerism led to increases in test laboratories,
product certification, government certification, consumer protection agencies, and better
business bureaus. The growth of consumerism along with growth in litigation and
government regulation increased the demand for quality assurance. Quality assurance,
which focused on remedying quality problems after purchase, became a management
The Japanese quality revolution eventually forced American companies to
develop efforts to become competitive in quality during production rather than after
production. Garvin (1988) describes this stage as the era of strategic quality management.
This stage required a dramatic shift to a new vision. "For the first time, top managers...
linked it [quality] with profitability, defined it from the customer's point of view, and
required its inclusion in the strategic planning process" (p. 21).
Common Quality Principles
Although researchers and theorists have recommended a variety of models to
implement quality management, a number of common principles are fundamental to the
success of a quality program (Fallo, 1997; Juran, 1995; Seymour, 1992).
* Customer focus. Customers must be satisfied with the quality. The concept of
customer includes both internal and external stakeholders.
* Key role of upper managers. Success is not possible without the personal
commitment and involvement of upper managers.
* Strategic quality planning. The organization's plan must include quality-related goals.
* Continuous quality improvement. Planning must be converted to projects that result
in quality improvement. New organizational structures employing collaborative,
multifunctional teams of managers, specialists, and representatives from all levels
must be involved in continuous improvement projects.
* Processes. Key processes must be examined and redefined to meet quality
improvement plans and to produce given results.
* Training. Training encompasses many areas ranging from training in the use of
statistical methodologies to training in managing quality. Training involves all
employees in all departments and job functions.
Measurement. Measurement of success and outcomes must involve both the
technological/production level and business processes.
Benchmarking. Benchmarking, making comparisons to comparable processes in other
businesses or settings, promotes factual analysis rather than empirical judgment.
* Empowerment. Planning that includes management and the workforce empowers all
workers making workers more self-directed and tapping vital experience.
* Motivation. Recognizing superior performance improves motivation. Constant
change requires recognition and reward systems that acknowledge and encourage
* Persistence. Constancy of purpose and long-term commitment are required for
Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award
The national standard for measuring the success of TQM in industry is the
Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA) (Juran, 1995). The United States
Congress passed legislation in 1987 that authorized the U.S. Department of Commerce to
develop the award. The criteria for the award cover seven categories: leadership, strategic
planning, customer and market focus, information and analysis, human resource focus,
process management, and results (Education, 2001). Knotts et al. (1993) concluded that
service and industry agree that the Baldrige Award provides the best framework for a
total quality management system.
The Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award was established as a stimulus to
improving quality. According to Juran (1995) the award greatly increased national
awareness of the subject of improving quality. Although the number of applicants for the
yearly award is usually under 100, many companies use the Award criteria as a tool to
self-evaluate their strengths and weaknesses. In addition, the Baldrige has stimulated the
growth of state awards. As of 1994, over two-thirds of the states had created such awards
(Juran, 1995). Knotts et al. (1993) reported on survey responses from 285 service and
industrial firms. They concluded that the firms consistently agreed that the award process
and its criteria are appropriate and that the Baldrige Award is accomplishing its goals.
The Baldrige Award "fosters quality awareness, promotes the understanding of the
requirements for quality excellence, promotes sharing of information on successful
quality strategies, and recognizes U.S. companies that excel in quality achievement and
quality management" (p. 52).
Appropriateness of Continuous Quality Improvement to Education
American businesses turned to quality management in response to global
competition and a loss of American markets. Educational institutions, which are also
experiencing rapidly increasing costs, competition from the private sector, declines in
enrollments, and demands from the public and government for more accountability, have
also turned to quality management for solutions (Holt, 1993; Mangan, 1992; Rhodes,
1992). Juran (1995) noted that industrial companies feel that "while quality has risen
greatly in importance, the educational system has not kept up with this trend" (p. 591).
The relevance of quality management to higher education has been affirmed
(Holt, 1993; Rhodes, 1992; Shaw, 1993) for meeting current challenges (Holmes, 1997),
for meeting high standards (Barth et al., 2000) and for enriching faculty and student
experiences (Bonstingl, 2001). Continuous Quality Improvement encourages educational
institutions to refine or redefine missions that have become too broad and that attempt to
be all things to all people (Brigham, 1994b; Seymour, 1993b). Its emphasis on the
customer is an opportunity to demystify the concept of quality in education (Marchese,
1993) and to address the complaints and expectations of students, parents, employers, and
legislators (Brigham, 1994b). Continuous Quality Improvement's emphasis on continuous
improvement provides an opportunity for organizations to modify overly
compartmentalized administrative structures and disconnected academic activities
(Brigham, 1994b; Seymour, 1993b).
Seymour (1993b) pointed out that TQM can help colleges and universities
improve performance. He also claimed that faculty reward systems and curriculum can be
positively influenced. For Seymour, the greatest benefit of adopting CQI is the possibility
of shifting from a resource model to a performance model as a foundation for educational
Marchese (1993) outlined a number of benefits of TQM to educational
institutions. He said that focusing on customers, both internal and external to the
institution, is the first benefit. The focus on customers demystifies quality because quality
becomes a function of the institution's contributions to student learning; thus, quality is
knowable and measurable. A second benefit is continuous improvement. According to
Marchese academics know about quality assurance, but the idea that teaching and
learning need to be continuously improved is new. A third benefit is management by fact,
which is also new to academia. Benchmarking, the systematic search for best practices, is
a fourth benefit. Fifth is TQM's philosophical tenet to give power to each person's work;
policies should be aimed at empowerment of individuals and work teams. A sixth benefit
is an organizational structure that includes training, teamwork, and mutual accountability.
American colleges and universities are highly compartmentalized and vertically
structured, making change and innovation difficult.
Godbey (1993), Executive Director for the Lehigh Valley Association of
Independent Colleges in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, looked beyond the implementation of
TQM in individual institutions. Godbey argued that in the realm of distance learning and
virtual companies higher education institutions will need to develop cooperative
relationships with other institutions. He suggested that TQM principles such as
cooperative teams and organizational transformation must be used to develop agile
institutions, institutions ready to respond and adapt to improve their competitive positions
The applicability of the quality movement to higher education has also been
criticized. Higher education consultant J. L. Fisher (1993) argued that TQM is potentially
dangerous, especially if leaders adopt it believing it represents a quick fix for difficult
problems. Fisher warned that TQM's emphasis on attributing problems to poor processes,
not to people, minimizes the importance of individual performance, accountability, costs,
Chickering and Potter (1993) expressed concern about the concept of the student
as customer, warning against accepting the idea that giving students what they say they
want is truly meeting the customer's need. They pointed out that the customer is not only
the individual student but also the "collective social enterprise" (p. 35). They supported
surveying students about their needs only if used as one piece of a broader base of
information to determine what students need from the institution and what society needs
from graduates. The success of TQM in academic areas is critically dependent upon
understanding that meeting the needs of the customer does not mean focusing on the
short-term desires of individual students.
The difficulties of implementing quality management successfully, the differences
in levels of motivation for embracing quality management, and the cultural and structural
differences between business and education have been studied. Marchese (1993)
described total quality as "complicated, important, difficult to implement, and far from
figured out" (p. 10). Coates (1996) pointed out that corporations turned to quality
management because they felt change was necessary for survival. In contrast, although
some of the same problems exist in education, colleges and universities do not have a
perceived need that they must change or they will cease to exist (Marchese, 1993).
Carothers (1992) addressed those who are skeptical about the appropriateness of
applying quality management on campus because of the mismatch of cultures existing
between industry and education. He claimed that higher education can learn from the
quality movement but also that the movement can learn from higher education.
"American higher education has been and continues to be what TQM calls a 'benchmark'
for the rest of the world" (p. 6). American universities are held together by shared vision
and by values that shape behavior without coercion. Faculty are empowered employees,
and their institutions invest heavily in their development. Quality management
"incorporates a philosophy about work, people, and relationships built around humane
values and shared vision" (p. 7) and is, therefore, appropriate for academic institutions.
Carothers did concede that campuses must translate quality concepts such as focus on the
customer and management by fact into language appropriate to an academic culture in
order to incorporate a philosophy that relies heavily on the intellectual and creative
abilities of people.
Implementation in Education
Continuous quality assurance first appeared in education about 1984 (Wolverton,
1994). Marchese (1993) cited the 1991-92 academic year as one of large increases in
academic interest. The American Association for Higher Education (AAHE) first
addressed quality management in 1989 (Marchese, 1992). In 1992, in response to the
explosion of interest in CQI, AAHE co-founded the Academic Quality Consortium
(AQC) in partnership with the William C. Norris Institute. The purpose of AQC is to
provide campuses implementing CQI with opportunities to learn and work
collaboratively to improve implementation of CQI. Support includes a summer academy
that focuses on student learning (Summer, 2001, 18).
In 1991, the California Board of Governors authorized a Commission on
Innovation to study ways to meet the challenges of the California community college
system. Citing limited finances and rapid change, the Board called for a new perspective
requiring profound change in the organizational culture of all the colleges. The
Commission recommended that all community colleges adopt and implement the CQI
philosophy (Commission, 1992). In 1993, two education journals, Educational Record
and Change, published issues that focused on quality initiatives in higher education. In
1994 the Community College Journal of Research and Practice (CCJRP) published an
issue devoted to the theme of TQM. Departing from its emphasis on research-based and
practice-based articles, the journal presented a collection of what editor Lumsden (1994)
described as "anecdotal and impressionistic accounts of what does and doesn't work and
why" (p. iii). And, in 1994, the Ohio State University Center on Education and Training
for Employment published a report on TQM in community and technical colleges based
on its work with the National Alliance of Community and Technical Colleges. The
Alliance had focused on TQM as its theme for the previous two years (Coady & Hair,
1994). Brigham and Carusone (1996) wrote a resource guide to assist colleges and
universities involved in CQI. The 120-page guide listed institutions, associations, and
conference resources as well as print, audio, and video articles and references.
Studies of COI in Educational Institutions
Studies of CQI implementation in education are primarily descriptive. Common
elements in these studies include motives for adopting CQI, a description of the process,
and the degree of implementation. Often schools turn to CQI because of declining
enrollments or budget cuts; however, in some cases, highly successful institutions with
reputations for innovation have also adopted the principles of CQI. Implementation most
frequently begins in the service or business areas of the college rather than in the
academic areas. The process involves commitment of the top leadership, training,
development of teams, and redesigning planning and assessment activities. The majority
of studies reported that after three to five years of involvement, most schools have just
Motivation for beginning total quality management at Syracuse University came
from deep budget cuts and declining enrollments (Shaw, 1993). Chancellor Kenneth A.
Shaw provided the impetus, and he involved his seven cabinet members. Early activities
included training for the cabinet members and revision of the university's mission and
vision. Syracuse also developed teams to identify problem areas and to propose solutions.
Shaw emphasized the heavy time commitment, both in hours of training and in years of
work, needed for full implementation. Syracuse first applied TQM to service areas, and
Shaw reported that the institution was just beginning in academic areas.
Donald Entner, Director of the Center for Quality and Productivity at Delaware
County Community College (DCCC) in Pennsylvania, described implementation at
DCCC. In 1986 the college adopted the principles of TQM to transform its educational
environment (Entner, 1993). In 1985, the president and executive staff committed to a
year long study of total quality principles. By the end of the 1980s, DCCC was using
these principles to develop and carry out its goals for the 1990s. In early 1990, the
administration and the board of trustees spent 15 months redefining the college's
philosophy, mission, and goals. All college planning and goals were integrated. DCCC
used the 1992 Malcolm Baldrige Award Criteria for quality standards as a guideline for
implementation. To meet the criterion of top management leadership and support, DCCC
trained the executive staff and made quality management a part of cabinet activities and
meetings. To integrate the organization's planning process, DCCC developed a ten-year
plan for implementation that became a part of every department and of daily management
processes. Entner reported that use of total quality principles in the curriculum and in
classroom management was the last phase of this integration. In 1993, seven years after
the college began developing its total quality (TQ) approach, 15 of 120 full-time faculty
had used some TQ concepts and tools in their classrooms. DCCC has identified students
as a major customer and has developed numerous methods of surveying students before,
during, and after their time at DCCC. The college engages in many types of employee
training and recognition and has empowered employees through quality teams that work
to solve college problems. Team successes include redesigning the phone system so that
student calls were not lost, reconfiguring parking assignments for more efficient use of
space, improving classroom scheduling and room assignments, and centralizing copy
facilities. President Richard DeCosmo supports claims that integrating total quality into
an academic environment requires persistence, commitment, and strong leadership
Seymour (1993a) reported on three institutions that had committed to continuous
quality improvement: Georgia Institute of Technology, Pennsylvania State University,
and the University of Maryland. All are successful institutions, but all found major areas
that needed improvement. In part, Georgia Tech's motivation for implementing CQI
came from its anticipated global exposure as it served as the site for the Olympic Village
in the 1996 summer Olympics. Despite its successful recruiting of highly qualified
freshmen and its sound research resources, a comprehensive analysis of the university
and its programs exposed numerous weaknesses. In 1987, President Pat Crecine began to
shift Tech's focus using CQI. Retention, particularly of minorities and women, became
the primary goal. Seymour described a successful program that continues to look for
ways to improve. Interest in TQM at Pennsylvania State University began in the Smeal
College of Business Administration when its dean met with others to draft a proposal for
an IBM Total Quality Management Competition. By 1991, Pennsylvania State University
had many operational pieces of CQI in place. To expand its integrated vision, Penn State
began analyzing its relationships with its input source, the high schools, and with its
output resource, employers. College leadership is strongly supportive and willing to
"walk the talk" (Seymour, 1993a, p. 21). President William Kirwin leads the CQI
initiative at the University of Maryland. His motivation is his belief that cultural
transformation of their "educational strategy and institutional infrastructure" (p. 25) is
necessary to meet the global marketplace demands of the new century. Maryland has
successfully implemented a number of initiatives and improvements and has become a
nationally recognized center for training and research on the topic of quality. Despite the
examples of successes on these three campuses, Seymour pointed out a troubling
"disconnection between institutional goals and individual goals" (p. 27), a confusion of
activities with results, and a lack of urgency to change, particularly among faculty. He
saw an unwillingness to confront the reward systems that discourage collaborative work
and that cause measurements to be seen as a way to rank and punish rather than reward.
The University of Wisconsin's Graduate School admissions office chose TQM
tools and techniques to help personnel redesign a "runaway" admissions process. Nagy et
al. (1993) reported a successful redesign of the graduate admissions process at the
University of Wisconsin. Using quality tools and processes over a two-year period, a
team representing all areas affected by graduate school admissions simplified processes
and improved efficiency at all stages. The success represented "a shift in thinking from
working harder and longer to working better" (p. 40).
Maricopa County Community College District is a 10-college system serving
180,000 students a year in the Phoenix area (Assar, 1993). It is considered one of the best
systems in the country, and its chancellor, Paul Elsner, is highly regarded as one of the
most effective college leaders in the nation. Continuous Quality Improvement began in
the Maricopa system in 1991 largely as a result of the interest of Linda M. Thor,
President of the Rio Salado campus. Thor began administrative and classroom
implementation of TQM in March 1991 (Thor, 1994b). By April 1993 all full-time and
some part-time employees at Rio Salado had gone through 40 hours of training in TQM's
basic concepts and tools, and more than a dozen quality-improvement teams had been
formed to improve various college processes. Chancellor Elsner began a system-wide
"Quantum Quality Initiative" in 1992, a program intended to focus on effective teaching
and learning (Assar, 1993). Maricopa trained administrative and faculty leaders and
established quality coordinators throughout the system (Assar, 1993). Leaders in the
Maricopa district stressed the need for training, for patience, and for persistence, and
Chancellor Elsner and Board Chair Grant Christiansen both stressed the need for total
commitment from top leaders.
Thor (1994a) said that CQI promotes a shared vision, a focus on the customer,
and employee involvement in decision-making. Increased teamwork and employee
empowerment are major benefits of CQI, and training becomes an integral part of the
institution's processes. Although the leader relies on data and measurement for decision-
making, leadership remains an art form. The leader must understand how to face crisis
and must be willing to lead others to overcome crisis. Major barriers include heavy time
commitment, a general aversion to change, reluctance of middle management, and overall
underlying attitudes (Thor, 1994a). Thor stated, "the failure of the leader to lead is one of
the chief causes of failure in TQM implementation" (p. 363).
Entin (1993) looked at 10 colleges and universities in the Boston area that began
implementing TQM in 1990-91. In most cases, interest to begin CQI came from a
strategically placed administrator and the president. Programs started with the training of
senior institutional managers, and most used outside consultants. According to Entin,
these schools, though already involved in TQM for two or three years, described
themselves as just beginning the process. He found that academic fields more closely
connected to business and industry, such as business administration, management, and
engineering, were the only ones involved in TQM. No liberal arts faculty were involved.
He also found that when presidents had to address crises immediately, they abandoned
TQM in favor of more traditional methods. Entin warned that the high degree of
skepticism and opposition from core academic units made success in educational
institutions difficult. For TQM to succeed in academic institutions, "two conditions are
necessary: college presidents must perceive TQM as a means to solve major problems
facing their institutions; and senior academic affairs administrators and faculty must
believe TQM is related to their concerns and interests" (p. 31). Entin stressed the need to
invest five or more years in the first stages and another five to integrate the process
President Sam Schauerman and Staff Developer Burt Peachy (1994) implemented
TQM at El Camino College in Los Angeles County over a 4 V2 year period. During that
time they trained 73% of the support staff, 98% of management, and 23% of faculty.
They reported that most process improvement teams were related to the support services
side of the college and that they had difficulty convincing full time faculty to accept the
TQM philosophy. However, some El Camino faculty have used classroom assessment
techniques and have developed an initiative in classroom assessment. The college also
adapted Baldrige award criteria as benchmark criteria (Schauerman & Peachy, 1994).
LeTarte and Schwinn (1994) reported on the first four years of implementing
TQM at Jackson Community College in Michigan. The process began with the hiring of a
new president, Dr. Clyde E. LeTarte, who brought an interest in a more participatory
management system than had previously existed at the college. Although successful
implementation depends on all people at all levels, the commitment of management is the
key factor. They cite the most significant benefit to be the renewed excitement about
learning that began to occur. Implementation placed the initial focus on problem
prevention and eventually shifted to focusing on improvement and innovation. LeTarte
and Schwinn stressed the importance of understanding institutional systems and of using
systems thinking. They also stressed the need for team involvement and team learning
throughout the organization. They cautioned that educational institutions cannot directly
transfer the business model of TQM. Rather, leaders must learn the theory and translate it
to the particular systems associated with teaching and learning. For example, they
claimed that the concept of customer satisfaction cannot be incorporated into an
educational plan without some modification that recognizes that students are not the only
interpreters of quality or of appropriate service. The educational model must recognize
external standards derived from a variety of customers of education. LeTarte and
Schwinn also felt that long-term commitment in an educational institution is more
difficult than in industry because of changing public boards and legislative measures.
Coady and Hair (1994) described implementation efforts at Edison Community
College in Ohio and Savannah Technical Institute, respectively. Implementation at
Edison began with the president's commitment to change the culture and values. Efforts
stressed training, communication, values development, assessment, empowerment, and
team development. Five years into the process, Coady indicated changes were just
beginning, primarily because the institution had to undergo a complete transformation
from an autocratic organization. Savannah Tech began implementing TQM in part
because its Development Center was teaching the concepts to business and industry. Hair
(Coady & Hair, 1994) stressed the importance of the vision of the president and cited the
difficulties associated with translating that vision to the faculty and the classroom.
Fallo (1997) studied the implementation of CQI in a random sample of schools in
the Continuous Quality Improvement Network (CQIN). Fallo surveyed 11 of the 28
member institutions. His results indicated that most schools had considerably more work
to do before they would be clearly functioning as continuous quality institutions. Fallo
also reported that all 11 schools cited the chief executive officer as the key factor to
implementing CQI and that continued support and leadership from the CEO was critical
to continued progress.
These 10 reports of efforts to implement CQI principles into colleges and
universities underscore the need for total commitment, training, and widespread
involvement of personnel. All indicated that leadership and team development are key
factors for success. However, they did not describe the qualities, traits, or characteristics
needed by these leaders.
Studies of Barriers to Implementation
Steven E. Brigham (1994a), Director of the Continuous Quality Improvement
Project at the American Association for Higher Education, analyzed the mistakes and
accomplishments found in industry's attempts to implement TQM. The literature he
reviewed concluded that often implementation of TQM has been deficient, but
researchers did not conclude that the TQM philosophy itself is seriously flawed. He cited
lack of leadership as the primary reason for failure. Total Quality Management requires
active leaders who shape the strategy and support the process. Other mistakes included
involving middle managers without adequate training or commitment and requiring
employee training without providing opportunities for employees to use the training in
meaningful ways. Concentrating on changing processes to the exclusion of assessing
results and failing to include external customers as well as internal ones were additional
mistakes. Brigham (1994a) found evidence that TQM can and does work in reports such
as a three-year quality study conducted jointly by Ernst and Young and the American
Quality Foundation and in a General Accounting Office report indicating that the highest-
scoring applicants for the 1988 and 1989 Malcolm Baldrige Award were among the most
successful in the nation in areas such as employee relations, productivity, customer
satisfaction, market share, and profitability.
Marchese (1993), who studied implementation in higher education, reinforced the
idea that implementation of CQI is difficult and time consuming. To succeed, higher
education leaders must be willing to make the commitments required, and they must not
avoid or delay implementation in the core mission of teaching and learning.
Peter T. Ewell (1993), senior associate at the National Center for Higher
Education Management Systems in Boulder, Colorado, provided an analysis of the slow
success of TQM in higher education. While some academics claim that education is well
suited to quality improvement and already engages in many of TQM's tenets, Ewell
claimed that many educational processes are not easily adapted to TQM. For example,
faculty may be an empowered workforce, but work teams and cooperative, cross-
functional strategies contrast sharply with individual faculty autonomy and the traditional
isolation of disciplinary departments. Ewell also contrasted TQM's focus on identifying
core processes and how they work with teaching and learning functions. The curriculum
is rarely seen as a process, especially one to be influenced by other processes, both
internal and external to the department or institution. Ewell said that academic research is
a valid example of continuous improvement, but he does not see a similar commitment in
undergraduate education. Reducing variation is another TQM concept that seems to apply
in some places but not others. Reduction in variation is seen as a valid goal in basic,
prerequisite, or professional skills, but in the realm of higher-order thinking and the
liberal arts, the development of individual voice and style is valued. Perhaps the greatest
concern in academic institutions has centered on the concept of serving customers.
Students are customers of many administrative processes such as registration and
counseling, but the term does not clearly fit inside the classroom. Despite these
differences, Ewell suggested that the traps can be avoided and that education can develop
its own version of quality management that can offer rich potential for improvement.
Entin (1994) returned to the 10 institutions he first studied a year earlier and
found that five had stopped or delayed implementation. Four displayed some level of
implementation in some units, and only one claimed to be achieving systematic
implementation. He did find examples of projects or improvements at all 10 schools that
had occurred as a result of continuous quality improvement, but he also found that top
managers tended to abandon TQM when they had to face crises such as major budget
cuts, employee layoffs, and declining enrollments. In the tenth college, the president
continued to be involved and to support TQM efforts throughout the institution. Strong
faculty opposition to TQM concepts and disagreement over the concept of the student as
customer led some school leaders to believe that TQM is not suited to higher education.
Entin (1994) identified several reasons for these results. Some campuses began
with only a superficial understanding of and training in TQM. In addition, the culture of
academic institutions is not conducive to the approach, particularly since faculty often
feel untouched by the larger problems facing their institutions, and, finally, many schools
began using TQM to solve isolated problems rather than to initiate larger, more
permanent, changes in the structure and culture of the institutions. Entin did state that the
changes that have occurred have all been seen as positive and that these institutions have
not yet invested the 10 years that many advocates say are necessary to impact the culture.
Hammons (1994) stressed the need for everyone involved to have a clear
understanding of what TQM is and what is involved. Hammons listed 18 prerequisites
necessary for successfully implementing TQM. All of them involve the commitment and
involvement of top administrators. Hammons warned that TQM has the potential for
causing trauma and that it requires a substantial length of time before results are seen;
therefore, he advised that colleges should be healthy enough to withstand trauma. He
concluded that colleges experiencing major problems should look to other solutions. He
said that TQM requires a cultural transplant; the culture of the organization is the primary
barrier to implementation.
Van Allen (1994) concluded that reported problems of implementation of CQI
were a product of inadequate leadership rather than of defects in the TQM model. He
found that the inability or unwillingness of leadership to manage change in organizational
culture was the primary cause of frustrations and failures.
Horine and Hailey (1995) surveyed 160 colleges and universities at various stages
of implementing quality management practices. They identified five key challenges:
organizational culture, senior leadership commitment, faculty support, implementation
time, and training. They reported the greatest challenge for leaders was to change the
organizational culture and that the greatest cause of failure was lack of support from top
Peterson (1993) also concluded that developing continuous quality assurance is
more than adopting a new management style; CQA requires a different philosophical
approach to all aspects of an organization. He concluded that those businesses and
industries that have been most successful in achieving profitability through TQM had
CEO's who became the chief quality officer. The CEO must assume responsibility on a
day-to-day operating level because TQM requires major revision of the traditional
administrative organizational structure. The president must adopt a philosophy of helping
people do a better job as opposed to the traditional role of supervising their performance.
Total Quality Management requires acceptance of the team approach by every member of
the president's immediate staff, especially the operational deans and vice presidents.
Finally, presidents must develop a vision that is consistent with the unique circumstances
and history of the institution.
Wolverton (1994) found that CQI in education has focused mostly in
administration and student support. She looked at classroom CQI efforts at six
institutions. She found evidence that CQI implementation led to viewing learning as a
continual process, to providing ongoing professional development opportunities, and to
fostering a collegial working environment. However, faculty also reported misgivings
about standardization, benchmarking, the emphasis on customer focus, and the time and
effort required for training and working in teams.
These eight studies highlight the challenges associated with implementing CQI in
educational institutions. These challenges involve change and leadership. Spanbauer
(1994), as President of Fox Valley Technical College, was one of the earliest adopters of
TQM into education. He summarized many of these concerns describing implementation
of total quality as a paradigm shift that challenges cherished traditions. He believes that
TQM fails if the leadership fails to maintain a delicate balance between the technical and
human/social aspects of the total quality philosophy. Successful implementation requires
leadership, vision, and continued assessment. Spanbauer said that it is essential to
distinguish between management and leadership and that the transformational use of
power, as contrasted to transactional power, is a central element of success. He further
described leaders as needing vision and integrity. They must empower others, practice
intensive listening, and embrace the ethic of service. Spanbauer described leadership as
flowing from those being led; he said that leaders must change, particularly in their
relationships with others. Spanbauer also stressed teamwork. Teamwork involves cross
functional groups working together to solve problems, sharing decision making, and
Burgdorf (1992) also called for redefining leadership for CQI. Burgdorf described
the systems approach as flowing more horizontally than vertically. Traditional hierarchies
encourage vertical communication. Top managers should work on improving the system
by enlisting the help of employees who work in the system. Leadership involves serving
as a resource, facilitating, leading a team, coaching, counseling and leading rather than
directing, rewarding, and punishing.
Babione (1995) and Farmakis (1995) both studied the effect of implementing
TQM on the culture of an educational institution. They both concluded that TQM does
not necessarily transform an institution from a culture of mistrust to a more positive
climate. However, both concluded that the efforts by the CEO and attention to the
cultural climate can overcome a negative culture, thereby making it possible to
These studies indicate that a major challenge to successful implementation of CQI
in education is recognizing that CQI is more than a change in management style. It
requires a cultural change, and the change must be integrated throughout the
organization, not isolated in certain areas. The change takes time. Most importantly, the
change requires the full commitment of the leader, and it requires a leadership style that
is participatory and team oriented.
The Malcolm Baldrige Award Criteria in Education
For the past 10 years, eligibility categories for the Malcolm Baldrige Award
included manufacturing companies, service companies, and small businesses (NIST,
1998). Recently, Baldrige criteria were developed for education. The Malcolm Baldrige
National Quality Award Education Criteria for Performance Excellence were piloted
beginning in 1995 and were revised in 1998 and are now modified annually as needed.
The seven categories are Leadership, Strategic Planning, Student and Stakeholder Focus,
Information and Analysis, Faculty and Staff Focus, Educational and Support Process
Management, and School Performance (Education, 2001). In October 1998, the federal
government passed legislation that authorized the National Institute of Standards and
Technology (NIST) to establish and manage Baldrige awards for performance excellence
for education and health care provider organizations (NIST, 1998). In 1999, the award
was opened to these two groups. Although none received the award in the first year of
competition, 16 educational institutions and 9 health care organizations did submit
applications (Kosko, 1999). In 2001, however, three of the five Baldrige Award winners
were in the education category. They included two public school districts and a branch
campus of a state university (Kosko, 2001).
Like the criteria for business and industry, the criteria for education can be used to
guide and assess quality initiatives (Holmes, 1997; Moore, 1996; Paris, 1996; Thompson,
1995; Winn & Cameron, 1998). The Criteria provide a means for an educational
institution to be measured on its successful implementation of quality principles. The
educational award criteria have been shown to be appropriate to the philosophy and goals
of educational institutions (Holmes, 1997; Moore, 1996; Thompson, 1995; Watwood,
1996). A number of institutions, including Delaware County Community College
(Entner, 1993), El Camino College (Schauerman & Peachy, 1994), and Austin
Community College (Fisher, D. C., 2000) have adopted Baldrige award criteria as
benchmarks or guidelines for quality implementation.
Thompson (1995) surveyed the senior administrators in Georgia's 32 technical
colleges regarding the pilot criteria. The administrators in her study said that the Malcolm
Baldrige National Quality Award Education Pilot Criteria as a whole, each of the seven
categories, and each of the 28 criteria were all appropriate for measuring quality in their
Moore (1996) studied the use of the criteria at San Juan College. In 1994 and
1995, San Juan College participated in the Quality New Mexico Award process. She
concluded that use of the criteria help institutions avoid many of the mistakes institutions
typically make when implementing TQM. Instead of focusing on statistical tools and
quality processes, the criteria place the focus of attention on values, processes, and results
and thus provide a conceptual framework for an action planning process. Moore
concluded that use of the criteria at San Juan College focused attention on values,
processes, and results. She also concluded that the process San Juan College used to win
an award at the state level was more rigorous than the reaccredidation process because
reaccredidation was based on meeting minimal standards whereas the Baldrige Criteria
required the institution to continuously strive toward the highest standards.
Watwood (1996) concluded that the award's focused, linked framework can also
be used as a model for program development, review, and assessment in various units,
levels, and types of colleges. Watwood stated that because the criteria focus on process
rather than product, their use can help a college move from crisis management to
Holmes (1997) also concluded that the criteria are appropriate for higher
education and should be used to meet the challenges of the present and the future. Winn
and Cameron (1998) studied the validity of the relationships between MBNQA criteria
and higher education data and developed a model for managing quality-improvement
Seymour (1996) described the award criteria as a "systematic way to pursue
performance improvement" (p. 9) through the codifying of "performance-improvement
principles" (p. 12). Brigham and Carusone (1996) devoted a section of their resource
guide to the Baldrige and the more than 20 state quality programs patterned on the
Baldrige. They reinforced Seymour's assertion that the Baldrige is an important
framework for affecting institution-wide change in higher education.
Summary of Continuous Oualitv Improvement in Education
Despite the interest in continuous quality improvement and the positive interest in
the use of the Baldrige Criteria in both business and education, widespread
implementation of quality improvement has been limited. Seymour (1994) reported that
although 7 in 10 educational institutions surveyed were using principles of total quality
management, only 1 in 10 were using those principles extensively. Juran (1995) felt the
quality initiatives of the 1980s were deeply disappointing. Coates (1996) reported the
success rate of implementing quality improvement in business and industry at 20% to
40%. Juran (1995) traced the disappointing results to "limitations of leadership by upper
managers" (p. 586). Linda Thor (1994a), President of Rio Salado Community College,
stated that one of the primary causes of the failure of implementation of Total Quality
Management is the failure of the leader to lead.
Study of Leadership
In his 1978 book on leadership theory, Bums wrote, "leadership is one of the most
observed and least understood phenomena on earth" (p. 2). Rost (1990) reviewed over
500 books, chapters, and journal articles that were written about leadership in the 1980s
and early 1990 as well as the works of Stogdill, Bass, and Gibb and concluded that the
underlying concept of all these studies views leadership merely as good management.
Sergiovanni (1992) said that the study of leadership "represents one of social science's
greatest disappointments" (p. 2). Yukl (2001) claimed the research is "beset with
confusion and ambiguity" (p. 440). Roueche et al. (1989) concluded that leadership skills
can be taught and acquired on the job but that more research is needed to identify and
understand exceptional CEOs. According to many researchers, there is still no agreement
on how leadership can be defined, measured, assessed, or linked to outcomes (Bennis &
Theories of Leadership
Mitchell (1990) concluded that contemporary studies support one of two theories
of leadership: leaders are born or leaders are made. Those who lean toward the "leaders
are born" theory are concerned with intellectual abilities and personal traits that must be
nurtured. Those who believe "leaders are made" are concerned with managing behaviors
and interpersonal relationships in identified situations and scenarios. Wills (1994) also
identified two primary models of leadership. They are the superior-person model and the
ingratiating-person model. The superior person must become worthy of being followed
by being more disciplined and committed than others. The ingratiating person learns
persuasive skills that win friends and influence people. Some theorists, including Rost
(1990), Senge (1990) Wills (1994), and Tiemey (1999) believe effective leadership also
acknowledges the followers, who have some input into the goal to which they are being
A frequently used method of reviewing the theories of leadership is to group
research approaches into distinct categories such as trait studies, behavioral studies,
contingency or situational studies, and power and influence studies (Bensimon,
Neumann, & Bimbaum, 1989; Birnbaum, 1988; Yukl, 2001).
Trait theories identify personal characteristics that are believed to contribute to a
person's ability to succeed in a leadership position (Bimbaum, 1988). Research in the
1930s and 1940s focused on discovering particular attributes possessed by successful
leaders. Yukl (2001) attributed the general failure of these studies to research designs that
failed to account for intervening variables and explanatory processes. Trait theory
became less dominant in leadership studies in the following decades. However, Bass
(1990) noted a renewed interest in personal factors of leaders. Yukl (2001) indicated that
better designed research studies in the 1980s and 1990s have provided insights into the
relationship between leadership attributes and leadership behavior and effectiveness.
Bensimon, et al. (1989) noted that although trait theory may not be a researcher's primary
focus, identification of specific traits continues to be influential in works describing
effective leadership in higher education. Bass (1990) concluded that "personality traits
differentiate leaders from followers, successful from unsuccessful leaders, and high-level
from low-level leaders," (p. 86) but he also stated:
Some of the variance in who emerges as a leader and who is successful
and effective is due to traits of consequence in the situation, some is due to
situational effects, and some is due to the interaction of traits and situation.
Behavioral theories examine what leaders do; they describe activity patterns,
managerial roles, and behavioral categories (Birnbaum, 1988). Studies of leadership
behavior focus on the nature of managerial work or on the behaviors of effective and
ineffective leaders (Yukl, 2001). The Ohio State University leadership studies conducted
in the 1940s provide a foundation for behavior research (Yukl, 2001). Factor analysis of
questionnaire responses indicated that supervisors function in two primary dimensions,
one that focuses on the work to be done and the role of the leader and follower in doing
the work, and one that focuses on the relationship between the leader and the follower.
These and other studies concluded that task orientation and relationship orientation are
two independent behavior categories and that leaders could demonstrate any mix of both
dimensions. A number of taxonomies have been developed that include additional factors
such as the nature of the situation or environment, the nature of the task, and the qualities
of the followers (Yukl, 2001). Managerial behaviors are then identified on a continuum
ranging from highly directive to highly participative. In a 1975 study, Bass, Valenzi,
Farrow, and Solomon identified five leadership styles: directive, delegative, consultative,
participative, and negotiative. These styles have been shown to be distinctive, but they
are not mutually exclusive (Bass, 1990).
Situational and contingency theories are closely related to behavioral theories.
Situational studies describe the importance of factors such as the nature of the task or the
external environment rather than the personal qualities of the leader (Bensimon et al.,
1989; Birnbaum, 1988). Contingency studies assume that the effectiveness of behaviors
differ in relationship to the situation (Yukl, 2001). Hersey and Blanchard (1993)
developed a model for situational leadership that directs leaders to employ varying levels
of guidance and support (task vs. relationship) dependent upon the level of readiness
(ability and willingness) of the followers.
Power and influence theories describe the source and amount of power the leader
has as well as the manner in which power is used (Bimbaum 1988). Power and influence
studies examine the levels and types of power that leaders exhibit and may also explore
the levels and types of power that followers exhibit (Yukl, 2001). Social power theory
and transformational leadership theory describe the leader's influence on followers;
social exchange theory and transactional leadership theory describe the mutual influence
and reciprocal relationships between leaders and followers (Bensimon et al., 1989).
James MacGregor Burs is credited with initially defining the difference between
transformational and transactional leadership (Fisher, J. L. & Koch, 1996). Bums (1978)
defined leadership as a relationship based on power. "Leadership is exercised when
persons with certain motives and purposes mobilize, in competition or conflict with
others, institutional, political, psychological, and other resources so as to arouse, engage
and satisfy the motives of followers" (p. 18).
Transactional leadership involves an exchange of one thing for another. The
exchange could be economic, political, or psychological (Burs, 1978). Transactional
leadership stresses reciprocity and mutual influence (Bensimon et al., 1989). In
transactional leadership the object is to form a bargain to aid the individual interests of
persons or groups going their separate ways. Transactional leaders focus on fulfilling
expectations. Transactional leadership emphasizes means (Birnbaum, 1988, 1999).
Transformational leadership stresses actions being initiated by the leader. The
leader recognizes the needs or demands of a follower and involves the follower in
satisfying those needs. By engaging the follower, transformational leaders seek to raise
both leaders and followers to higher levels of motivation and morality (Bensimon et al.,
1989; Bums, 1978; Fisher, J. L. & Koch, 1996). Leaders can also shape, alter, and elevate
the motives, values, and goals of follower (Bums, 1978). The premise of this leadership
is that people's separate interests are united in the pursuit of higher goals, resulting in
significant change that represents the interests of both leaders and followers (Burns,
1978). Transformational leaders focus on changing expectations; transformational
leadership emphasizes ends (Bimbaum, 1988, 1999).
Bums's definition of leadership involves both the leader and the follower. Studies
of transformational leadership are concerned with the leader and with the leader's
influence on the follower. Rost (1990) argued that the postindustrial world requires a new
understanding of leadership. He suggested expanding the concept of leadership as defined
by Bums. Rost emphasized the connection among leaders and followers. Leadership is
"an influence relationship among leaders and followers who intend real changes that
reflect their mutual purposes" (p. 102). Rost explained that the relationship is a
noncoercive, multidirectional one between leaders and active followers. Rost stressed the
importance of developing mutual purposes; therefore, the relationship between leaders
and followers is noncoercive.
Rost (1990) also suggested that studying this kind of leadership requires that
scholars experiment with different research designs and methodologies that are grounded
in "what is real, what actually happens when leaders and followers do engage in
leadership" (p. 183). These scholars should become parts of teams that include training
and development experts who translate the theory into action as well as practitioners who
implement the theory and then reflect critically and provide feedback to scholars and
trainers (p. 184).
Other scholars have also expressed concern regarding the nature of the studies
that have been conducted. Studies often focus on an individual person or a particular
theory or are based on the perceptions of leaders themselves. Pierce and Pederson (1997)
stated, "As a body, this literature [on presidential leadership] has become steadily
narrower in its focus, with individual works focusing on specific skills or detailed
methodologies for the management of change" (p. 14). However, Bass (1990), who cited
over 7,500 studies, concluded that "research on leadership and its widespread
applications are coming of age" (p. 879) and that current research designs and approaches
provide the potential for further understanding.
Robson (1996) argued for a broader perspective for the study of leadership; he
stressed the cultural context in which leadership occurs. Wharton (1997) said that the
relationship between successful leadership and institutional effectiveness should be
Traditional theories of leadership and traditional definitions of leaders are
inadequate for current and future organizations (Elsner, 1984; Gratton, 1993; Rost, 1990).
A new understanding of leadership and new methodologies to study it are needed.
Research approaches cannot focus solely on distinct categories such as trait theories,
behavioral theories, contingency or situational theories, and power and influence theories;
they cannot focus on individual persons; and they cannot focus solely on the perceptions
of leaders themselves. Studies must be concerned with the leader, the leadership team, the
followers, and the needs of the organization.
Leadership and Organizational Change
Leadership theory must address the manner in which organizational change is
managed (Elsner, 1984). Bums (1978) stated that the leadership process is the carrying
through from decision-making stages to points of concrete changes in people's lives,
attitudes, behaviors, and institutions. Leadership brings about real change that leaders
intend. According to Bums, the leader's ultimate role in social change depends on his or
her ideological leadership, including the degree to which he or she makes an appeal as
idol and hero to serve the purposes of both the leader and the followers.
Seymour (1994) claimed that when individuals are confronted with new ideas that
conflict with an existing culture, the status quo usually prevails. Leaders must shape the
new vision and lead the organization to it. According to Joel Barker (1992), "You
manage within a paradigm. You lead between paradigms" (p. 4).
One of the major distinctions between management and leadership, according to
John Kotter (1990), concerns change. Management strives for consistency and order.
Leadership produces movement. Leadership is effective when it moves leaders and
followers to a place where both are better off. Leaders develop interdependence with
followers, aligning them to move together in the same direction. And leaders motivate
and inspire people so that they will have the energy to overcome obstacles. This concept
of leadership acknowledges multiple roles for both followers and leaders. Leaders
coordinate the roles.
Rost (1990) associated the leader as manager with the industrial paradigm. That
paradigm no longer serves the needs and values of the postindustrial world. Postindustrial
values include, among others, collaboration, diversity, active participation from all levels,
client orientation, and on-going dialogue.
Rost (1990) focused on the nature of leadership as a dynamic relationship and
addressed change as a worldwide event. The world is "being transformed by a massive
paradigm shift in societal values" (p. 181). Therefore, Rost is concerned with identifying
the kind of leadership that will be needed in what he describes as a postindustrial world.
The values of the industrial paradigm are characterized by the following: a
structural-functionalist view of organizations, a view of management as
the preeminent profession, a personalistic focus on the leader, a dominant
objective of goal achievement, a self-interested and individualistic
outlook, a male model of life, a utilitarian and materialistic ethical
perspective, and a rational, technocratic, linear, quantitative, and scientific
language and methodology. (p. 180)
The shift now occurring suggests an increase in values such as "collaboration,
common good, global concern, diversity and pluralism in structures and participation,
client orientation, civic virtues, freedom of expression in all organizations, critical
dialogue, qualitative language and methodologies, substantive justice, and consensus-
oriented policy-making process" (Rost, 1990, p. 181).
Peter Senge's The Fifth Discipline (1990) also described a new paradigm, the
learning organization. Successful organizations are those that address change; these
organizations require new management ideas based on the learning organization.
According to Senge, the learning organization can arise from an extension of total quality
concepts. Senge rejected the traditional view of the leader as a hero who sets the
direction, makes key decisions, and energizes the followers. Leaders are designers,
stewards, and teachers. They build or design the organization, including the vision,
values, and purpose. They improve team learning, starting with their own vision but
expanding to the larger vision developed through team learning. They also teach people
to see the bigger picture and where to focus their attention by fostering learning. Senge
stated that the top managers' values, behaviors, and publicly stated vision should be the
basis for freeing up the authority context of the organization enough to stimulate others to
reflection and invention. Senge described the learning organization as one in which
"people continually expand their capacity to create the results they truly desire, where
new and expansive patterns of thinking are nurtured, where collective aspiration is set
free, and where people are continually learning how to leam together" (p. 3). The
learning organization depends on five systems: systems thinking, personal mastery,
mental models, shared vision, and team learning.
O'Banion (1997) described organizational change needed in the community
college. He advocates the learning college. To achieve a learning college, leaders must
flatten their organizations, empower individuals, develop collaborative processes, commit
to quality, and make learners of the stakeholders. O'Banion said that the foundation for
creating a learning college is significantly strengthened when colleges are already
engaged in complementary processes found in TQM and learning organizations.
O'Banion warned that the learning organization is the antithesis of hierarchical and
authoritative models that have guided American institutions for decades (p. 81).
O'Banion (2000) provided an inventory of benchmark activities and questions for
institutions committed to becoming learning-centered. O'Banion's final point emphasized
the key role of presidential leadership which is essential to carrying out all the activities.
Freed and Klugman (1997) encouraged cultural change through the adoption of
Senge's learning organization principles. Lorenzo and Zajac (1996) described
decentralization of leadership authority, increasing emphasis on conflict resolution, and
facilitation of individual and organizational learning as well as a shift from an attitude of
independence to one of interdependence. They reported that the top areas of emerging
leadership center on resolving conflict, promoting collaboration, and assuring equity and
According to Napier et al. (1998), creating meaningful change is perhaps the
greatest challenge of all in higher education. Traditional cultures, reward structures, and
decision-making practices have led to increasing specialization and fragmentation that
inhibit change in most institutions. Curriculums and administrative practices alike have
suffered from divided loyalties and narrow frames of reference that make coordination
and coherence in direction difficult to achieve.
Ruiz (1999) concluded that for change to be supported internally, the transition
must reinforce internal values. She also stressed the importance of communication and of
having a clear strategic plan.
Schein (1992) said that leadership is the fundamental process by which
organizational cultures are formed and changed. Likewise, groups cannot adapt to
changing environmental conditions without leadership.
Leaders communicate assumptions they hold through what they pay
attention to and reward, through the role modeling they do, through the
manner in which they deal with critical incidents, and through the criteria
they use for recruitment, selection, promotion, and excommunication. (p.
According to Schein (1992), changing the culture requires involvement and
participation of the leader. Leaders and followers must be learners:
My sense is that the various predictions about globalism, knowledge-based
organizations, the information age, the biotech age, the loosening of
organizational boundaries, and so on have one theme in common-we
basically do not know what the world of tomorrow will really be like
except that it will be different. That means that organizations and their
leaders will have to become perpetual learners. (p. 361)
Learning leaders must develop effective communication systems and must
determine what kind of information is needed to solve problems (Schein, 1992). The
learning leader assumes that "the world is intrinsically complex, nonlinear, and
overdetermined" (p. 372). Since a changing environment is complex and interdependence
is high, both task and relationship orientations are critical.
Wharton (1997) also stressed the commitment of followers as crucial to the
success of leaders. "The environmental challenges community college leaders face
demand ... energy, commitment, and performance" (p. 27) for leaders and staff.
The recognition that change has become necessary to successful organizations has
focused some leadership studies on identifying the characteristics and traits needed for
successful leadership in the future. In addition, discussion of leadership in change
situations leads to a focus on process as well as on the leader's characteristics or
Bennis and Townsend (1995) contrasted new leaders with old. They described a
shift from those who think they have all the answers and get all the benefits to those who
can conduct their staff to find their own answers. They described both characteristics and
process. The great leader has to have a strong set of convictions, a devoted constituency,
and the capacity to gain broad support for his or her goals. The qualities needed include
character, experience, intelligence, and energy. Traits of the leader of the future include
intelligence and the ability to be articulate. The leader must keep personal ambition under
control and must be a servant to his or her people. The leader must be a mentor, have a
sense of humor, and be inclusive. The leader must exhibit toughness and protect his
people, and he or she must be fair. The future leader's ambition must be directed toward
helping associates succeed in reaching the organization's goals. The leader must also
have a high level of competence and expertise as well as integrity.
Bennis and Townsend (1995) defined leadership as "the capacity to create a
compelling and plausible vision and to translate that vision into organizational realities"
(p. 27). The leader must have the ability to generate and sustain trust, to be agile and
adaptive; and to be open to diverse points of view. The leader must also be decisive and
Tierney (1999) advocated organizational redesign for all colleges and universities.
He described the leadership needed for redesign. Leadership must occur at multiple levels
and through multiple people, not just through the president. He also said leadership is a
process that is comparative and reciprocal. "A restructured organization needs leaders
who are designers of protean structures capable of change and modification" (p. 57).
Based on interviews, meetings and focus group discussions conducted on
campuses across the country, Carter and Alfred (1996) concluded that in addition to
traditional responsibilities, community college leaders must take on new roles. Those
roles include addressing change and empowering others. Leaders must be healers who
restore faith and trust among groups and with individuals on campus; they must be bridge
builders who develop connections between and among groups. They must be learning
leaders who keep themselves and others well informed about external and internal trends
and conditions. They must be interpreters who translate the movements and trends to all
levels in the institution. They must be innovators who lead others into understanding and
participating in fundamental change.
Leadership in Educational Institutions
In his work on organizational theory and college governance, Bimbaum (1988)
pointed out that little of the extensive research on leaders has focused on educational
leaders. He also noted that the nature of the educational enterprise is not conducive to
leaders and followers but rather to constituents. Bimbaum suggested that the very nature
of colleges and universities makes their management difficult and that attempts to
improve management "may reduce rather than increase effectiveness" (p. 202). Because
of the nature of educational institutions, Bimbaum claimed they "tend to run themselves"
(p. 196) and that presidents have relatively little influence over outcomes when compared
to other forces. The authority of the president is restricted by external forces such as
resources and governmental control as well as by internal forces such as the professional
authority of professors. The limits of what a president might achieve are defined by
"where their institutions and society permit them to go" (p. 17).
Bimbaum (1988) explored four models of organization and governance: the
bureaucracy, the collegium, the political system, and the organized anarchy and
suggested a model that integrates all of them. The cybernetic model emphasizes systems.
Feedback loops monitor organizational functions and provide data that lead to correction.
The role of the president is de-emphasized in favor of functional subsystems. Changes
result from bringing systems back into balance. "Cybernetic institutions tend to run
themselves" and leaders need only "pay attention to what is wrong" (p. 196) and make
adjustments. Birnbaum stressed transactional leadership, but recommended
transformational leadership in times of crisis or imbalance.
Roueche, Baker, and Rose (1988) also claimed that leadership in colleges is
complicated by the nature of educational institutions. Educational goals seem ambiguous
because they are not product-oriented; the institutions are vulnerable to external
influences; decision-making authority is decentralized; and, especially in community
colleges, the students have widely varying backgrounds and needs.
Bensimon et al. (1989) further explained the problematic nature of studying
leadership in colleges and universities. Colleges are complex organizations often having
dual control systems. Conflicts exist between professional and administrative authority.
Education systems often have unclear goals with vaguely defined measures of outcomes.
These researchers claimed that most presidents tend to accept a traditional and directive
view of their roles. Few presidents emphasize the importance of two-way
communication, of social exchange processes, or of facilitating rather than directing the
work of professionals.
Levin (1995) conducted a number of studies that explored the influence of
presidents on their community colleges and reported that they do make a difference and
that the difference can be positive or negative. In one case the change was viewed as a
major cultural change. He also concluded that influence is most likely to occur when
institutions change presidents. Levin pointed to several reasons for a leader's ability to
exert influence on a community college. Unlike universities, community colleges lack a
strong department-based academic culture; they have few deep-rooted traditions; and
they are adaptable, flexible, and responsive to community needs.
J. L. Fisher and Koch (1996) also noted that research literature rarely focuses on
college presidents and that most of what exists examines transactional and
transformational leadership. They are critical of much that has been published about
presidential leadership in colleges claiming the works are often personal stories and
experiences and that they are not based in theory or conducted using sound research
Studies of Community College Leadership
In an effort to present models to improve methods for identifying and developing
leaders for the future, Alfred et al. (1984) examined the structure of the community
college and the climate of change present in a number of institutions.
Alfred (1984) described the changing external and internal environmental
conditions facing community colleges as the basis for defining new leaders. He designed
a "symbolic interaction model" (p. 8) to analyze potential leaders. The model "portrays
leadership as a catalyst that adapts the internal organization to changing environmental
conditions, thereby producing congruence, or that retards change, thereby producing
incongruence" (p.10). The effective leader must maximize institutional responsiveness to
changing environmental conditions. Analysis of leadership as a function of a match
between the individual, the institution, and the environment led Alfred to conclude that
future effective leaders in community colleges will not be heroic, charismatic individuals.
Rather, they will have successful administrative experience and will demonstrate both
conceptual understanding and practical experiences in managing complex organizations.
Richardson (1984) cited changing demographics, declining resources, changing
missions, aging staff, and changing technology as forces that future leaders will need to
address. Richardson adapted the eight characteristics of excellent corporations developed
by Peters and Waterman to the community college. These characteristics emphasize
timely problem solving, quality service, commitment to institutional values, clear
mission, involvement of all employees, and support at all levels of the institution.
Elsner (1984) discussed the relationship between leadership and change. Elsner
stated that leadership turns on the way in which change is managed. Claiming that little
has been done to prepare leaders for the twenty-first century, Elsner called for both local
and national centers to study community college leadership and to train future leaders.
Smith (1984) examined the role of the community college leader in a changing
community. He concluded that many routine roles--such as board and community
relations, academic and institutional leadership, planning and budgeting, and, most
important, communication with students and other public constituencies--would remain
important. However, he described a critical new role, the societal visionary. In this role
presidents must develop a vision of what tomorrow will bring, and a plan and set of goals
to best prepare for it. In this dimension, leadership involves analysis and interpretation of
a massive, ever changing database to develop a sensible point of view about the benefits
that can be derived from redirection of resources within the institution.
Terry (1984) stressed the increasing role among constituents. "Tomorrow's
community college leaders must be able to merge the local concerns of business and
industry, citizen groups, elementary and secondary education, and political officials with
the statewide interests of the legislative and executive branches of government" (p. 71).
Palmer (1984) reinforced the work of Smith and Terry. He said the president will
be required "to study the implications of impending socioeconomic changes, determine
institutional responses to these changes, and secure the commitment of the college
community to implementation of these responses" (p. 122).
Bush and Ames (1984) stressed the importance of technology. Advances in
technology and the impact of these advances on fiscal and human resources create
additional stresses on developing new funding sources and on creating new processes for
human resource development.
Major research of the 1980s and 1990s explored the role of the president and
college leadership by focusing on perceptions of leaders, by surveying those individuals
or groups of individuals perceived to be effective leaders, by testing particular leadership
theories, or by analyzing the literature.
Vaughan (1986) analyzed and described what presidents and others believe is
important in an effective presidency. Vaughan surveyed over 800 presidents of public
two-year colleges asking them to identify the two top community college leaders in their
state. Of the 75 presidents who emerged, 68 participated in a leadership survey and also
nominated top national leaders. Ten presidents emerged as national leaders. Vaughan also
interviewed trustees, spouses, faculty members, administrators, and other national
educational leaders. Vaughan concluded that the primary factor determining effective
presidencies was leadership. The presidents ranked integrity, judgment, courage, and
concern for others as the top personal attributes; they identified producing results,
selecting qualified people, resolving conflicts, communicating effectively, and motivating
others as necessary skills and abilities. The primary leadership roles of the president were
identified as taking responsibility for establishing and interpreting the mission of the
college, for defining the community college mission, and for assuming the responsibility
for seeing that the mission is carried out and understood by the college's many publics.
Vaughan also stressed the role of the president as an educational leader and as the person
responsible for setting the campus environment or mood. The president is also required to
be an external leader who works with state legislators, business leaders, special interest
groups, other educational institutions, local politicians, and other groups.
J. L. Fisher, Tack, and Wheeler (1988) asked 28 private foundation
administrators, 35 higher education scholars and 400 randomly selected presidents of
two- and four- year public and private institutions to identify the five most effective
college presidents in the nation using their own definitions of an effective president. Out
of a possible 3,300 presidents, the respondents identified 412. These 412 effective
presidents and a random sample of the 3,300 not named as effective were asked to
complete a 40-item questionnaire, the Fisher/Tack Effective Leadership Inventory. The
Inventory focused on defining effectiveness in terms of characteristics and styles using
five factors: management style, human relations, image, social reference, and confidence.
Analysis by each of the five factors revealed a significant difference between the
responses of effective and representative presidents on the confidence factor but not on
the other four. Analysis of items within the factors revealed no significant difference
between the two groups on any items in the human relations or image factors. However,
there were significant differences on items within the factors related to management style
and social reference. The effective presidents were found to be less collegial and more
distant; to be more inclined to rely on respect than affiliation, to be more inclined to take
risks; to be more committed to an ideal or a vision than to an institution, to believe more
strongly in the concept of merit pay; to work longer hours, and to be more supportive of
organizational flexibility than rigidity.
The researchers conducted interviews with 18 of the most frequently nominated
presidents. Those interviewed represented all four sectors: two- and four-year, public and
private institutions. Analysis of the interviews identified three personal values critical to
their philosophy. They were completely committed to what they do, expressing a strong
belief in the value of higher education; they genuinely respected others; and they believed
in themselves and others. The presidents displayed the following abilities and skills. They
were intelligent and astute. They generated unlimited ideas about how to improve higher
education, and they had a deep understanding of their own institutions. They did not take
things personally; they had an intuitive ability to analyze, and they recognized
opportunities and seized them. The researchers indicated that their analysis of the
presidents' leadership styles generally supported previous studies. Effective presidents
are action oriented; they accept authority and responsibility in governance; they work
long hours; and they see the lighter side of things. Their human relations skills reveal
they are warm, outgoing people; they maintain self-control; they use power with finesse;
and they are visible but share the credit. The philosophical nature of these leaders reveals
that they are dreamers, but they have a vision, and they are reflective. They think
carefully, use information, and integrate knowledge of data into their planning.
Roueche et al. (1988) conducted a study to identify the best transformational
community college presidents and to describe what those leaders do and how those
affected react to those behaviors. Their study was designed to determine whether
transformational presidents in community colleges behave similarly or dissimilarly from
peers when influencing and empowering others. Based on their study of modem theory,
they believe that effective leadership can be learned, and their goal was to develop a set
of behavioral attributes common to transformational leaders (Roueche et al., 1989).
The first stage of their study was designed to identify those leaders who have
demonstrated transformational leadership qualities. They defined transformational
leadership as "the ability to influence, shape, and embed values, attitudes, beliefs, and
behaviors consistent with increased staff and faculty commitment to the unique mission
of the community college" (Roueche et al., 1989, p. 12). They asked over 950
chancellors, presidents, and state directors of community colleges to nominate up to five
individuals from their state and/or region that they believed exemplified this definition.
They then studied how this group performed and how they empowered others to perform.
The 296 leaders who emerged were asked to write about their educational
leadership philosophy, to provide examples, and to complete a three-page questionnaire.
These leaders were also asked to nominate one or two exceptional community college
CEO's in the nation (Baker, Roueche & Rose, 1988). This second process resulted in a
group of 50 outstanding CEO's, whom the researchers called "blue chippers" (1989,
p.12). Baker et al. then studied this group in depth using interviews, evaluations, and
survey instruments to document the characteristics, values, expectations, behaviors, and
strategies of these leaders.
Roueche et al. (1989) developed five themes common among these
transformational leaders: influence through teamwork and shared decision-making,
people orientation, motivation, strong personal values, and vision of what can be.
Hammons and Keller (1990) reviewed leadership literature to identify possible
attributes and then conducted a national study to identify the competencies and personal
characteristics needed by community college chief executive officers of the future.
Hammons and Keller developed a list of 62 competencies derived from a comprehensive
review of the literature on community college leaders, from selected literature on four-
year institutional leaders, and from selected literature on business sector leaders. The 62
competencies were organized into three clusters: leadership skills, group related skills,
and personal characteristics. Using the Delphi method, Hammons and Keller surveyed a
stratified, random group of 27 community college presidents. This group was asked to
rate and, if needed, expand the list. The three-round process resulted in 43 competencies:
18 leadership skills, 5 group related skills, and 20 personal characteristics:
Leadership skills (18): delegation; personnel selection; decision-making;
interpersonal skills; knowledge of and commitment to mission; leadership; planning;
visionary; organizing; information processing; public relations; professionalism;
finance/budgeting; performance appraisal; analysis; controlling; peer network;
* Group Related skills (5): motivation; use of power; entrepreneurship; integrating;
Personal Characteristics (20): judgment; commitment; integrity; communication;
flexibility; positive attitude; energy; wellness; sense of responsibility; persistence;
risk taking; emotional balance/control; time management; sense of humor; research;
creativity/stability; empathy; introspection; patience; charisma. (pp. 37- 39)
Hammons and Keller (1990) found that current community college leaders agreed
on the competencies needed for the future and recommended that the criteria be used as
selection criteria in future presidential searches.
Amey and Twombly (1992) conducted a meta-analysis of the literature on
community college leadership from the early 1900s to the present. Their purpose was to
analyze the discourse of the literature to "(1) identify the images and rhetoric of
leadership in junior/community colleges; (2) observe the sociohistorical and
organizational context of these images; and (3) examine the effect of images and rhetoric
on leadership behavior" (p. 126). Amey and Twombly reported two major findings. First,
the discourse reinforces the ideology of the community college, particularly the concepts
of constant change and of democratic ideals concerning the community college's role in
society. Second, the discourse reinforces the image of the powerful autocratic leader and
the ideology of a small group of white male scholars and practitioners. The particular
image of leadership that emerges is that of the great man. Amey and Twombly concluded
that the effect of this writing has been to exclude those who do not fit the symbolic image
created by this group of white male authors. They pointed out that only four of Roueche's
blue chippers were women and that Vaughan's chapter on women presidents focuses on
problems women have in becoming presidents rather than on the leadership they offer.
J. L. Fisher and Koch (1996) examined leadership theory and current empirical
evidence to develop principles of effective presidential leadership that apply to particular
aspects of the college presidency.
More than anything else, the problems of higher education involve a crisis
in higher education leadership. Presidents have failed to lead, both because
they do not understand what presidential leadership entails, and because
their governing boards have not made it possible for them to lead. (p. 330)
They believe that effective leadership concerns accountability and that in many
institutions presidential authority has been reduced or eliminated, often by boards that
misplace authority in the hands of groups such as faculty, students, or alumni who cannot
be held accountable for the decisions they make (p. 13).
Their review of the literature led J. L. Fisher and Koch to conclude that the theory
of presidential leadership centers on the concepts of transactional and transformational
leadership. They clearly endorsed the transformational model of leadership. They defined
leadership as "the ability of A to get B to do something that B might otherwise not have
done" (p. 21). Based on the topology developed by French and Raven, J. L. Fisher and
Koch identified the most important forms of presidential leadership in a college or
university (in ascending order of importance):
Coercive, which is the threat or use of punishment by the president;
Reward, which involves the ability of the president to reward and provide
Legitimate, which is the importance of presidential position and which
must be provided by the institution's governing board;
Expert, which is based on the real or perceived knowledge of the
Referent. or charisma, which is based either upon a feeling of trust and
oneness with the president, or a desire for such a feeling, and which
should result in the development of a significant public presence. (p. xii)
J. L. Fisher and Koch claimed that although they encourage friendly, interactive
relationships in college communities, collegial leadership is not possible. They said, "The
president has to create a platform from which to lead the institution effectively" (p. 4).
The authors supported the conclusions of J. L. Fisher et al. (1988) and discussed how
effective presidents should interact with various constituencies and how they should carry
out specific tasks. They concluded the following:
The most important form of presidential power is the president's own
charismatic power.... A charismatic individual usually is capable of
taking over a crowd by means of the power of his or her thoughts, his or
her expertise or performance, and his or her carefully established public
presence. (p. 332)
Campbell and Leverty (1997) sought to identify the attributes of a 21st century
community college leader. They enlisted a group of 14 experts to construct a work profile
for this leader. The group represented a variety of community colleges and included
trustees, presidents, chief instructional officers, business officers, and faculty. Using the
Delphi method, the group further refined the profile. The group used the attributes
described in the Occupational Personality Questionnaire originally developed in 1984 in
the United Kingdom by Saville and Holdsworth, Ltd., as the basis for developing the
The 21st century leadership work profile included the following attributes as
essential: utilizing data/logic, critical evaluation of ideas, and the ability to engage in
forward planning. Working in a nontraditional environment was considered important.
Other relevant attributes in the relationships with people domain included being socially
confident, enjoying negotiating and changing opinions of others, being in control and
able to direct and take charge, using democratic strategies, caring about others, and
enjoying affiliation with others. Other relevant attributes in the thinking domain include
being able to analyze the thoughts and behaviors of others, being conscientious about
details, being intellectually curious and engaging in theoretical thinking, and being
creative and innovative. In the feelings and emotions domain, relevant attributes include
being ambitious and oriented toward achievement, being calm and relaxed and free from
anxiety, being optimistic, and exhibiting emotional control (Institute, 2000).
Wen (1999) surveyed the presidents and CEO's of the nation's 1,271 community
colleges to determine their self-perceived leadership styles. The results, based on
responses from 176 presidents, showed no significant relationship between leadership
style and personal characteristics such as number of years at present position, total years
of experience, and influence on organizational culture. Wen's results indicated that nearly
80% of presidents were male, that they had served as administrators for about 21 years,
and that they had been in their present position an average of 8 years. He also found no
significant relationship between their styles and institutional characteristics such as single
or multi-campus, number of faculty, and geographical setting. Wen used the Leadership
Effectiveness Adaptability Description Self instrument. His results indicated that most
presidents use the Selling style (50.3%) followed by Participating (35.6%). Only 1.2%
used the Telling style, and none reported using the Delegating style. Some (12.9%) did
report using multiple styles with an average of 1.5 secondary styles. Style adaptability,
the ability to vary style appropriately to the situation, was also measured. The majority
(76.3%) of the presidents were Moderate in their ability to adapt. Only 3.7% scored in the
Hood, Miller, and Pope (1999) surveyed 96 community colleges presidents. The
presidents identified the roles of communicator, innovator, and facilitator as most
important to their positions. They identified institutional vision and revitalization as the
most important dimensions of their leadership.
Although they used a variety of approaches and research methods, all of these
researchers, Alfred et al. (1984), Vaughan (1986), J. L. Fisher et al. (1988), Roueche et
al. (1988), Hammons and Keller (1990), Amey and Twombly (1992), J. L. Fisher and
Koch (1996), Campbell and Leverty (1997), Wen (1999), and Hood et al. (1999) relied
on feedback from contemporary leaders, views of leadership experts, particular
leadership theory, and/or a review of the literature to select subjects for study or to define
qualities of leaders.
A major theme in the literature on future leaders and 21st century organizations
concerns the issues of teamwork and of empowering employees. The decentralization of
leadership authority and the facilitation of individual and team learning are needed in the
change process (Lorenzo & Zajac, 1996). Freed and Klugman (1997) stressed the
importance of teams and team work as well as empowering all levels of employees to
achieve quality principles, and Schein (1992) stressed the need to share and manage
jointly to overcome the anxieties associated with change. Wellins, Byham, and Wilson
(1991) researched teams and teamwork in organizations. They surveyed over 500
companies that used self-directed teams, conducted further research in 28 organizations,
reviewed the literature, and drew on their own expertise in the fields of cultural change,
organizational design, and training. They described the traditional organization as a
layered/individual structure in which jobs are narrowly defined as single-tasked. In
contrast, an empowered team organization has a flat team structure and jobs are designed
to be whole process and multiple-tasked. In a traditional organization, management's role
is to direct and control. Leadership is top-down and information flow is controlled and
limited. In contrast, in an empowered team organization, the management's role is to
coach and facilitate; leadership is shared with the team; and the information flow is open
and shared. In the traditional organization, rewards are made to individuals and may be
based on seniority. Managers determine the job process; they plan, control, and determine
how to improve processes. Empowered teams plan, control, and improve job processes in
Bensimon and Neumann (1993) studied leadership teams in 15 institutions of
higher education. They conducted 70 interviews of presidents and other team members at
a group of diverse institutions. The intent of the study was to explore models of
teamwork in higher education, taking into account the leadership orientations of
presidents and their executive officers. Their interest was to examine how presidents and
their designated team members work together; how team members perceive the quality of
their working relationships; how presidents select, shape, and maintain particularly
effective teams; and how teams address conflict and diversity of orientation among team
Their study indicated that the functions of presidential teams are a direct result of
the president's personal leadership philosophy. Bensimon and Neumann (1993) described
three functions of presidential teams. Utilitarian functions are task related and their
purpose is to help the president maintain control over institutional functions. Primary
activities include delivering information, coordinating and planning, and making
decisions. Expressive functions are integrative and associative and their purpose is to
help reinforce a sense of groupness or connectedness among individuals involved in a
joint venture. Primary activities include providing mutual support and counsel to the
president. Cognitive functions are intellective and dialogical and their purpose is to
enlarge the span of intelligence of individual team members, enabling the group to
behave as a creative system as well as a corrective system. Primary activities include
viewing problems from multiple perspectives, questioning, challenging, arguing, and
monitoring. "Real" teams (p. 44) are complex and serve all three functions. "Illusory" (p.
45) teams are only partially utilized and generally lack both cognitive and expressive
domains. Presidents whose personal leadership philosophy is individualistic and
functionalist develop teams that are passive or inert and that function primarily in the
utilitarian mode. A president whose personal leadership philosophy is dependent upon
shared, interactive processes is more likely to develop a team that employs all three
functions and that is active and creative (p. 144).
Knudson (1997) modified Bensimon and Neumann's interview protocols to study
team leadership in community colleges. She studied presidential leadership teams in three
medium-sized midwestern community colleges. Knudson found that all three presidents
used multiple cognitive frames of reference. The presidents placed the greatest value on
the domain of cognitive team functions while team members placed the greatest value on
the domain of expressive functions. The teams were all functionally complex and
exhibited all five of the core cognitive roles and three of the supporting cognitive roles
described by Bensimon and Neumann. Knudson concluded that all three teams were
complex, "real" teams, although each lacked one or more elements of effectiveness.
Napier et al. (1998) claimed that recent change initiatives such as total quality
management have resulted in small incremental changes or worse because of the failure
of leadership. Their research led them to conclude that two elements are critical to
implementing strategic change successfully. These elements are a committed partnership
among executive leaders and a focus on the human dimensions of change. Napier et al.
described the need for an executive leadership team that develops a synergistic
relationship. The team must be a committed partnership among executive leaders.
Leaders must be committed to team learning, to sharing information widely, and to
solving difficult problems collaboratively. They must learn and use "change skills" and
must build the capacity for team leadership throughout the institution.
Continuous Ouality Improvement Leadership
Although almost every study of CQI implementation cites leadership and
commitment of top leaders as major criteria for success, very few studies have examined
leaders in CQI institutions. Brigham and Carusone (1996) found very little literature on
CQI leadership in higher education.
Bensimon et al. (1989) observed that presidents "tend to accept a traditional and
directive view" (p. iv) of their leadership. Few emphasized two-way communication,
social exchange, or mutual influence. Gratton (1993), however, contended that since
continuous learning is the basis for continuous improvement, concepts of leadership must
be viewed differently. Power must be based on personal competence and on working in
partnership with others and must be learned and practiced throughout the organization.
Gratton (1993) connected TQM leadership with Peter Senge's learning
organization. Gratton stated that Deming's fundamental views about continuous
improvement have often been simplified and reduced to demonstrable outcomes such as
improved efficiency or making more money (p. 98). She argued that Deming's principles
require leaders to change processes, relationships, and cause and effect systems and to
develop a vision and desired outcomes. A Deming organization must be committed to
continuous training, education, and self-improvement. Gratton said that Senge offers an
effective design for creating and sustaining an environment for learning. She argued that
the assumption that learning is at the heart of continuous improvement and that learning
creates the future dramatically changes prevailing beliefs about leadership in community
colleges. "Leadership is learned and earned, not assumed. Its power becomes 'power-
with' (working in partnership with others) and 'power-within' (personal competence)" (p.
Several theorists and researchers have sought to define leadership for continuous
quality improvement by placing it in either the transformational or the transactional
model. J. L. Fisher and Koch (1996), who are skeptical of CQI, endorsed the
transformational model in CQI. They stressed the lack of influence possible through the
transactional model and the individual accountability and influence possible through the
transformational model. The work ofJ. L. Fisher et al. (1988) also criticized total quality
management processes. They summarized TQM as a "process-oriented, egalitarian
approach to increasing productivity, decreasing costs, and improving quality" (p. 25).
According to J. L. Fisher et al. (1988), the emphasis on teamwork, sharing responsibility,
and seeking better ways to do things has led to excessive use of resources and time with
minimal success. Instead, they endorsed the transformational leader as president, a leader
who "is a strong, caring action-oriented visionary" who is "more willing to take risks
than the usual president" (p. 57).
Bensimon et al. (1989) suggested that studies should consider that the debate
about transformational versus transactional may not be purely an either/or choice and that
both perspectives may be useful, but in a more complex configuration. Freed and
Klugman (1997) encouraged a more collegial leadership style (transactional) in quality
organizations. They emphasized collaboration, participation, and interaction at all levels.
However, they also described quality leaders as visionary decision makers
(transformational) who based decisions on data rather than intuition. Rather than relying
on charisma though, these leaders developed trust and mutual respect through shared
leadership, communication, and decision-making based on data and assessments.
According to Gratton (1993), individuals, rather than a top leader such as the
president, are assumed to be agents of transformation. Continuous Quality Improvement
organizations must cultivate a systems view and must understand the inner-connectedness
of all processes.
Studies of Leadership and Continuous Quality Improvement
Believing that leadership is the foundation of the change process, leaders at
Virginia Institute of Technology began implementing TQM by forming a task force on
university leadership (Leffel et al., 1991) whose goal was to create a vision for quality
management. The task force was comprised of faculty with expertise in organizational
development. In addition, the Office of Research and Planning and other university
resources provided support and data. An administrative advisory committee was formed
to periodically review the accomplishments of the task force. After reviewing the
literature, the task force adopted John Gardner's model. The task force identified these
leadership tasks: envisioning goals, affirming values, motivating, managing, achieving
workable unity, explaining, serving as a symbol, representing the group, and renewing. In
addition, the task force gathered data from both leaders and followers within the
institution by conducting 78 interviews and organizing 36 focus groups. The task force
concluded that leadership must be a value at all levels of the organization, that followers
must view the management process positively, that strengthening cultural values is a
catalyst for change, that the leader must demonstrate daily the desired behaviors and
values, and that a clear vision and shared values produce a sense of community.
The study also concluded that followers at all levels of the organization are able to
identify the ideal leader's attributes. Attributes include a sense of vision, personal
integrity, ability to nurture, decisiveness, intervention, active listening, assertiveness,
delegation, advocacy, situational leadership, appraisal and feedback, mediation, and
political insight. The profile of the ideal leader also included knowing how organizations
work and having a repertoire of skills to use as appropriate. Leffel et al. (1991) concluded
that these attributes are consistent with those reported by other leadership researchers.
Leffel et al. (1991) also concluded that the majority of administrators were not prepared
to be leaders and that professional development was needed.
As a result of the task force findings and other research at Virginia Tech, Leffel et
al. (1991) identified seven primary responsibilities for leaders involved in a TQM effort.
-define where we are and what we look like;
-define where we are going and how we will move along the road of
continual improvement, and disseminate this vision broadly;
-project and demonstrate by example university values that emphasize
-inspire, motivate, and value all personnel in orchestrating concerted
action along the road to TQM;
-remove organizational barriers between institutional units and levels of
the hierarchy that impede cross-functional teams;
-incorporate learning, problem solving, and risk taking as strong elements
of an institutional culture that seeks TQM;
-celebrate successes. (p. 64)
Although Dever (1997) claimed that Peter Senge's learning organization is
particularly suited to higher education, he recognized that the model rejects the traditional
view of leaders. Dever aligned Senge's description of the leader as designer, steward, and
teacher with what Bimbaum (1988) saw as the limits inherent in the power and influence
of educational administrators. This view conflicts with other studies of higher education
leadership, such as J. L. Fisher and Koch (1996), that advance more activist notions of
what a college or university president can accomplish. Dever argued that the more
restrained mode of leadership advanced by Senge is not a necessary corollary to
successful implementation of models such as the learning organization or continuous
quality improvement. Dever compared Senge's descriptors to the four frames of Bolman
and Deal (1991) and aligned the designer with the structural frame, the steward with the
symbolic frame, and the teacher with the human resource frame. The political frame was
missing from Senge's model. Deal claimed that Senge rejected the traditional heroic or
strong leader because that image reinforces the followers' own sense of powerlessness.
However, Dever argued that such leadership could sustain and augment the followers'
power. Thus, he argued for the strong attributes of the transformational as well as the
transactional leader. "Room needs to be made in the learning organization model to
accommodate the power of the strong individual leader-be it heroically transformational
(admittedly rare) or politically transactional" (p. 61).
Schoening (1994) described his method of instituting change at Independence
Community College in 1992. He worked with faculty, staff, and mid-level administrators
to develop a new mission statement and implementation strategies. Using the new
mission, the president's cabinet and others identified administrative traits or
characteristics that were needed to carry out the college mission and the strategies. They
reviewed supervisor leadership styles and chose participative leadership as described by
Wellins et al. (1991). The college developed a team leadership model that called for an
administrator who could foresee, value, influence, and promote change; facilitate,
support, and coach self-directed teams; expand team capabilities through effective
communication, creativeness, and performance-based team identity; utilize strategic
planning to make the most of team differences; and use continuous performance
personnel practices. The team is consistently focused on foreseeing, influencing and
evolving change; performance based leadership; strategic planning; and continuous
performance improvement. The administrative in-service program and evaluation process
focuses on those same institutional philosophies.
Walters (1995) described a highly collaborative style of leadership that
emphasizes interdependence and shared responsibility among a wide variety of
organizations and groups. The model is not one of "we are the leader and will help you
find the way" but rather one of"we're all in it together, and must jointly find the way" (p.
Studies of team leadership support the concepts of leadership described by Rost
(1990), Senge (1990), and others who are concerned about leadership for the future.
Concepts of team leadership are also consistent with the theories of quality improvement.
The research also indicated that the functioning of teams is a direct result of the
president's personal leadership.
Summary of Review of Literature
The principles of continuous quality improvement have been shown to be
appropriate to educational institutions, and in the last 10 years many higher education
institutions have begun adopting these principles to effect organizational change.
However, the research also indicates that development and successful implementation of
CQI have been slow in education. No institution was able to score high enough on the
rigorous criteria for the Malcolm Baldrige Award to receive the award in its first two
years of availability. However, three institutions received the award for 2001 (Kosko,
2001), after investing years in the process. The research indicates that commitment of top
leadership and effective leadership are critical to the success of implementation of total
quality management. Studies of CQI institutions emphasize shared leadership, personal
competence, visionary qualities, participation and interaction while dismissing qualities
such as assumed power and charisma (Dever, 1997; Freed & Klugman, 1997; Gratton,
1993; Leffel et al., 1991; Walters, 1995).
This chapter explains the research methodology used in this study. The research
purpose, problem, and design are described; the research instruments and research sample
are explained. The data collection methods are explained followed by the methodology
used for data analysis.
Pumose of the Study
The purpose of this study was to develop a theoretical construct of effective
leadership in a community college that has adopted or wants to adopt the principles of
continuous quality improvement. According to Gall, Borg, and Gall (1996), a theoretical
construct is developed by explaining a set of observed phenomena. This study was
designed to gather data to explain the leadership of presidents and senior team members
of institutions that have demonstrated successful implementation of Continuous Quality
Improvement processes. The study presents an analysis of leadership in colleges that
have demonstrated success as measured by the Baldrige Quality Award Education
Criteria. Specifically, this study determined the level of implementation of the 1998
Malcolm Baldrige Quality Award Education Criteria for Performance Excellence in
member institutions of the Continuous Quality Improvement Network. To develop the
theoretical model, leadership styles, team types, personality traits, situational variables,
and intervening variables were explored. Both quantitative and qualitative inquiry
methods were used to determine the leadership and team profiles of the presidents and
senior team members of those institutions that scored highest on the Baldrige Quality
Award Index Rating. The Occupational Personality Questionnaire (OPQ) was used to
determine the critical traits, team types, and leadership styles of the presidents and their
senior team members. Questionnaires and institutional reports and documents were used
to gather information about the situational and intervening variables that are associated
with successful implementation of CQI. Semi-structured interviews were conducted to
further explore the practices of the CEO's and to further understand the organizational
structure. A conceptual model for effective leadership in a community college that has
adopted or wants to adopt the principles of continuous quality improvement was
developed. To determine how the key leaders in the colleges studied contributed to the
successful implementation of CQI, the following major research questions were
* Is there a difference in the situational variables in colleges with similar levels of
implementation of CQI?
* Is there a difference in the personality traits of members of the senior leadership
teams in colleges with similar levels of implementation of CQI?
* Is there a difference in the leadership styles of members of the senior leadership
teams in colleges with similar levels of implementation of CQI?
* Is there a difference in the team types of members of the senior leadership teams in
colleges with similar levels of implementation of CQI?
* Is there a difference in the intervening variables affecting CQI implementation in
colleges with similar levels of implementation of CQI?
These questions constitute the study's propositions, the phenomena to be
examined within the scope of the study (Yin, 1994). For the purposes of this study,
situational variables are those contextual and organizational conditions that exist within a
leadership setting. Researchers (Entin, 1994; Hammons, 1994; Horine & Hailey, 1995)
have identified the motivation for adopting CQI, the organizational structure, the culture
of the institution, time for implementation, and personal factors of the leaders as
important situational factors in the implementation of CQI. Personality attributes to be
explored are grouped into three domains: relationships with people, thinking style, and
feelings and emotions. OPQ data also yielded preferred leadership styles of the presidents
and other senior leaders. The study explored each leader's preferences for five leadership
scales (Bass, 1990) and each leader's ability to adapt style use depending on the
circumstances. OPQ data were also used to determine preferred team types based on
Meredith Belbin's eight team roles for optimum performance, for presidents and senior
team members. Intervening variables are those variables that mediate the effects of
leadership behavior on end-result criteria of leadership success (Yukl, 2001). In
implementation of CQI, intervening variables are likely to include presidential
commitment and involvement, follower commitment and involvement, training,
management of change, and reaction to external events such as legislative or economic
changes (Hammons, 1994; Horine & Hailey, 1995; Van Allen, 1994).
Leadership research has been characterized as being too narrowly focused and as
providing simple explanations (Yukl, 2001). To determine the characteristics of effective
leaders, researchers have studied national leaders as identified by other leaders, analyzed
leadership theory, or surveyed leaders based on a particular leadership approach such as
transformational or transactional leadership. Research has not been conducted by
selecting leaders according to institutional outcomes or assessments such as successful
implementation of CQI principles.
Research indicates that current knowledge of leadership styles is not sufficient to
meet the demands of today's management innovations such as TQM (Haire, 1997;
Jameson & Soule, 1991). In addition, the successful implementation of CQI has been
difficult for many institutions. Seymour (1994) reported that although 7 in 10 educational
institutions surveyed were using principles of total quality management, only 1 in 10
were using those principles extensively. Researchers indicate that implementation takes
time and commitment. Juran traced the disappointing results to "limitations of leadership
by upper managers" (1995, p. 586). Proponents of CQI have emphasized the central
importance of leadership in a CQI organization (Freed, et al., 1994; Leffel et al., 1991;
Norton, 1994; Seymour 1992; Walton, 1986) and have identified general characteristics
important to CQI leadership. These include shared leadership, personal competence,
visionary qualities, participation and interaction (Dever, 1997; Freed & Klugman, 1997;
Gratton, 1993; Leffel et al., 1991; Walters, 1995). However, "very little empirical
evidence exists to help understand how leadership styles best complement and assure
success of CQI implementation" (Haire, 1997, p. 2).
According to Bass,
Some of the variance in who emerges as a leader and who is successful
and effective is due to traits of consequence in the situation, some is due to
situational effects, and some is due to the interaction of traits and situation.
Bass indicated that more qualitative research is needed to address the complexities of
organizations and their leadership. Yukl (2001) suggested that the various lines of
research are gradually converging and that the various approaches should be viewed as
part of a larger network of interacting variables. Yukl proposed that leadership
characteristics and behaviors are both the independent and dependent variables and that
leaders affect and are affected by other variables including the institution's success
This study examined the concept of effective leadership within institutions that
have demonstrated success in implementing and using continuous quality improvement.
The first phase of the study determined the degree of implementation of CQI in the
member institutions of the Continuous Quality Improvement Network using a survey
research design, a method common to investigation of educational issues (Gall et al.,
1996). In this study, the success of the institution was determined by using the
Institutional Self-Assessment (Appendix A), which measured an institution's level of
implementation of the 1998 Malcolm Baldrige Quality Award Education Criteria for
Performance Excellence. To determine situational variables present in each college, an
institutional background questionnaire (Appendix A) was included with the self-
assessment survey. The background survey requested information about the
implementation of CQI at the institution as well as data about the college, the president,
and senior team members. Situational variables included the motivation for adopting
CQI, time for implementation, organizational factors and culture, and personal factors of
The second phase was designed to investigate leadership in colleges with high
levels of CQI implementation. This part used both quantitative and qualitative research
methods to collect and analyze data from the colleges that scored highest on the
Institutional Self-Assessment. According to Yin (1994), the case study method is used
when contextual conditions need to be studied and when "the boundaries between
phenomenon and context" (p. 13) are not clearly evident. This study used an embedded,
multiple-case design (Yin, 1994). An embedded design is used when a case involves
more than one unit of analysis; a multiple-case design is used when there is an interest in
determining replication of phenomena. This study investigated two colleges and their
leaders, each treated as a separate case. The evidence for each case was gathered and
analyzed independently. Results for each case were written individually. Then a cross-
case analysis was written. The conclusions from the cross-case analysis were used to
develop the theoretical construct.
The theoretical framework for leadership developed in this study defined the
leadership attributes consistent with successful implementation of CQI within specified
contextual conditions. The colleges with the highest scores on the Institutional Self-
Assessment were selected as the multiple cases for study. The units of analysis in each
case were the president and the leadership team and certain situational and intervening
factors. Factors investigated were those cited in the literature as affecting
implementation: organizational factors and culture, time for implementation, motivation
for adopting CQI, personal factors of leaders, leadership commitment, training, campus
wide involvement and commitment, management of change, and external events
(Brigham, 1994b; Entin, 1994; Ewell, 1993; Hammons, 1994: Horine & Hailey, 1995;
Marchese, 1993; Peterson, 1993; Van Allen, 1994).
According to Yin (1994), a qualitative research design can be assessed using the
logical tests commonly applied to quantitative research designs. Construct validity can be
increased using three tactics. The first is the use of multiple sources of evidence during
data collection. This study used surveys and questionnaires, document analysis, and semi-
structured interviews. The second is to establish a chain linking the pieces of evidence;
this occurred during collection and analysis of the data and is reflected in the reported
results. The third is to have the key informants review the report to verify the accuracy of
their responses. The respondents were sent their results for review and comment. The
presidents reviewed transcripts of their interviews.
Threats to internal validity in qualitative analysis are most likely to occur when
inferences are made (Yin, 1994). Making correct inferences was strengthened through
careful analysis of interview and documentary evidence, attention to alternate possible
explanations, and tightening of potential gaps in the chain of evidence collected. In
addition, Dr. Dale Campbell, a qualified SHL Test User, reviewed the discussion related
to the results of the OPQ.
External validity, the generalizing of the results, is threatened if the results of the
case study are assumed to apply to a larger population (Yin, 1994). Statistical
generalization is not suitable to case studies. Rather, case studies rely on analytical
generalization, in which a particular set of results may be generalized to a broader theory.
The Occupational Personality Questionnaire was administered to the president
and members of the senior leadership team at each of the colleges that rated highest on
the Baldrige Quality Award Index Rating. Copies of college documents and reports were
also collected from these colleges. Information studied included the organizational chart,
governance structure, committee structure, committee minutes and agendas; the strategic
plan, including statements of mission and philosophy; and performance or assessment
Information was gathered regarding existing situational variables at each of the
highest rated colleges. Situational variables are those contextual and organizational
conditions that exist within a leadership setting (Yukl, 1994). Researchers have identified
the motivation for adopting CQI, the time for implementation, the organizational
structure of the institution, the organizational culture, and the personal characteristics of
the leaders as important to successful implementation.
Information was gathered regarding intervening variables related to
implementation of CQI. Information gathered from the documents and questionnaires
was based on the variables cited in the literature as affecting the successful
implementation of CQI (Brigham, 1994b; Entin, 1994; Ewell, 1993; Hammons, 1994:
Horine & Hailey, 1995; Marchese, 1993; Peterson, 1993; Van Allen, 1994). Intervening
variables included senior leadership commitment to the principles of CQI and
involvement in the process; campus wide training and participation in CQI development
activities; and management of change. Semi-structured interviews were conducted to
clarify and add to information collected from documents and questionnaires (Appendix
The success criterion was defined as the level of implementation of the Baldrige
Award Criteria. The Baldrige Quality Award Index rating of each college was determined
using a self-assessment questionnaire. The survey questions addressed the 18
subcategories within the seven categories contained in the 1998 Malcolm Baldrige
Quality Award Education Criteria for Performance Excellence. The self-assessment was
conducted using a five point Likert-type scale: (1) Strongly Disagree, (2) Disagree, (3)
Neither Agree nor Disagree, (4) Agree (5) Strongly Agree. The responses were then
entered into the Baldrige Quality Award Index Rating Sheet, which weighted the
responses for each of the 18 subcategories according to the Baldrige Education Criteria
point system. Coresky, McCool, Bymes, and Weber (1992) suggested that institutions
use the Baldrige Quality Award Index Rating, based on the Baldrige Award Criteria and
point system, to obtain a baseline from which to begin a CQI program. Paris (1996)
modified the instrument, basing it on the 1995 Baldrige Education Criteria for
Performance Excellence. The Paris survey was developed in association with Dr. George
A. Baker III, Joseph D. Moore Distinguished Professor of Community College
Leadership and Director of the National Institute for Leadership and Institutional
Effectiveness at North Carolina State University. Eight members of the Carolina Quality
Consortium advisory board reviewed the instrument for content and face validity prior to
a pilot test. Upon revision, this group concurred on the validity (Paris, 1996). The
reliability factor of the instrument was greater than .85 as determined by Cronbach's
Coefficient Alpha. Parallel split half reliability resulted in a reliability coefficient of.88
for odd numbered responses and .86 for even number responses. Total reliability was .93
using the Spearman-Brown formula of conversion (Paris, 1996). Paris used the
instrument to determine institutions' current and expected future levels of implementation
of Baldrige criteria. For this study, the Paris instrument was used with updates to reflect
the 1998 Baldrige Education Criteria and point system. Copies of the self-assessment
instrument and the response sheet are included in Appendix A.
The Background Information Sheet (Appendix A) was developed to gather
information about the institution, members of the leadership team, and the reasons) for
adopting CQI. This information was used to provide a descriptive profile of all the
institutions as well as to determine differences in situational variables.
The Occupational Personality Questionnaire (OPQ) was administered through the
Institute of Higher Education at the University of Florida as part of the 21st Century
Educational Profiles Project under the leadership of Dr. Dale F. Campbell, Professor and
Director of the Institute of Higher Education. The OPQ was given to the presidents and
senior leaders in the institutions that scored highest on the Institutional Self-Assessment.
The OPQ measures 30 concepts in three "domains": relationships with people (9
concepts), thinking style (11 concepts), and feelings and emotions (10 concepts). Each
concept model attribute is rated on a scale ranging from a low level of the attribute to a
high level. (See Appendix C.) Support for personality scales as predictors of specific
independent measures of job competency or performance has been demonstrated in
several studies (Saville, Sik, Nyfield, Hackston, & Maclver, 1996). Baron (1996)
concluded that instruments using numerous scales (including the 30 in the OPQ) do
provide interpretable psychometric parameters. Internal consistency reliability for the
OPQ items (N=441) ranged from .54 to .88 with a median of .75 as determined by
Cronbach's Coefficient Alpha (Saville & Holdsworth, 1996). Saville and Holdsworth
stated that a range of .50 to .80 is desirable for measuring broad personality traits
provided that test-retest and alternate form reliabilities are adequate. The test-retest
correlation coefficient for the 31 scales of the OPQ ranged from .69 to .94 with a median
of .84 on a sample (N=86) with a one-month interval between tests (Saville &
A number of studies have been conducted to determine criterion and construct
validity of the OPQ. For example, a study comparing OPQ results with supervisors' job
performance evaluations of 269 senor managers indicated that aspects of personality are
consistently related to job performance. All correlations were significant at the 5% level
(p .05) (Saville & Holdsworth, 1996). Construct validity studies included correlation
with the Jenkins Activity Survey Type A Scale (N=95), with the Sixteen Personality
Factor Questionnaire (N=230), and with the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (N=82), among
others. Results suggested that the OPQ measures essentially what it intends to measure
(Saville & Holdsworth, 1996).
The OPQ also determines an individual's preferred Leadership Styles-using the
five described by Bass (1990): directive, consultative, delegative, participative, and
negotiative. Since these styles are not necessarily mutually exclusive, the OPQ also
measures an individual's adaptability, that is, the capacity to adopt different styles of
behavior in different sets of circumstances.
The OPQ also determines an individual's preferred Team Types-based on
Meredith Belbin's eight team roles for optimum performance: coordinator, shaper,
innovator-plant, monitor-evaluator, resource investigator, complete, team worker,
implementer (Belbin, 1981, 2000). A team role is a cluster of related characteristics; the
OPQ expert system derives the team types from clusters of its 30 concepts. Dulewicz
(1995) developed a correlation matrix for the eight team roles derived from the OPQ and
from another personality questionnaire, the 16 Personality Factor Questionnaire.
Dulewicz found high proportions of significant intercorrelations. He also found
significant correlations between the two questionnaires when relating the same team role
from each. The one exception occurred where the two questionnaires differed in the kinds
of scales used.
Information regarding situational and intervening variables was gathered through
interviews and from institutional documents and reports. Documents included college
catalogs, organizational charts, strategic plans, performance and assessment reports, and
the colleges' websites. The governance structure, committee structure, and some job
descriptions of each college were also examined.
The fourth resource used for data gathering was telephone interviews. The
purpose of these interviews was to further explore the behaviors of the leaders, the CQI
implementation process, and additional information on the intervening variables. A copy
of the interview questions is included in Appendix D.
The research design for this study required a purposeful sampling process (Gall et
al., 1996). The population for the self-assessment based on the Baldrige Education Award
Criteria and the Background Questionnaire consisted of the community colleges in the
Continuous Quality Improvement Network (CQIN). The president, CQIN Institutional
Representative, or other appropriate administrator at each participating college completed
the self-assessment questionnaire.
Development of the leadership model described in this study required a
population of leaders who were committed to and have had success in continuous quality
improvement. The membership of CQIN was selected for this study because of the
organization's commitment to the principles of continuous quality improvement. In
addition, membership requires commitment from top leadership and evidence of that
commitment in the organization. The Continuous Quality Improvement Network was
formed "to assist member CEOs with active organizational transformation via out-of-box
learning and sharing practices" (CQIN, 2001, Introduction, 11) and to develop workshops
and other strategies to aid faculty, staff, and trustees in learning about CQI. It was formed
in 1991 with 13 member institutions. Membership is currently 36 organizations,
including colleges, districts, non-profit organizations, and corporate partners. The
organization invites chief executive officers of community and technical colleges to
apply if they are committed to organizational transformation and measurable, continuous
improvement (CQIN, 2001, Application).
The results of the Institutional Self-Assessment were used to determine the
Baldrige Quality Award Index rating for each of the colleges. The rating sheet provides a
weighted score for each of the 18 subcategories within the seven categories contained in
the 1998 Malcolm Baldrige Quality Award Education Criteria for Performance
Excellence as well as an overall Baldrige Quality Award Index Rating score. The
weighting is the same as the weighting system used in the Baldrige Criteria. Data also
included the range of scores and an overall mean score for all institutions in the study
(Appendix E). The Baldrige Quality Award Index ratings are Category I, Not Yet Quality
Focused; Category II, Commitment; Category III, Significant Progress; and Category IV,
The study's population was further narrowed to the colleges that scored in
Category IV, Quality Focused. The Occupational Personality Questionnaire was
administered to the presidents and senior leaders in those colleges. The total number of
subjects was determined by the actual membership of the leadership teams in the colleges
meeting the success criteria. The presidents participated in the semi-structured interviews.
Presidents of the community colleges in CQIN were contacted and were given a
description of the purpose of the study. They were asked to commit their institutions to
participate in the initial self-assessment and background questionnaire and to agree to
participate in the follow up study if asked (Appendix A).
The self-assessment instrument was mailed to the CQIN representative or other
official designated by the president. Respondents were asked to complete the self-
assessment instrument and questionnaire and to return them in the enclosed self-
addressed, stamped envelope.
Once this data was collected and analyzed, the top colleges were selected for
further study. The OPQ was administered to the president and leadership team members
identified in the questionnaire. Follow-up information and additional documentation were
requested from the president or designee (Appendix B). Information was also obtained
from each college's website. Additional documentation requested from institutions that
were selected for further study included an organizational chart of the institution, a
description of the governance structure, a list of college wide committees and their
functions and membership, the college's strategic plan, and performance or assessment
reports. The results of the OPQ were provided to the participants, and they were invited
to respond with comments or questions (Appendix C).
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