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Impact of principal's leadership style on teacher motivation

Dissertation
Author: Saleh Elzahiri
Abstract:
This phenomenological qualitative study examined the impact of leadership styles on teacher motivation. The current study focused on the exploration of the lived experience of participants regarding the effectiveness of school leadership. The process of data collection contained two main methods; interviews and focus groups. Ten school principals were interviewed and 80 teachers participated in focus groups to discuss the possible impact of the type of leadership style on teacher motivation from the perspectives of principals and teachers. The findings of the study showed the importance of integrating multiple leadership styles in a school for an effective leadership practice. Findings also showed that effective leadership styles such as, transformational and situational leadership approaches could constitute an important factor to increase teachers' job satisfaction and motivation. Suggestions for future leadership practice and further studies are included in the study.

TABLE OF CONTENTS LIST OF TABLES ............................................................................................................... viii CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION .......................................................................................... 1 Background of the Problem ................................................................................................... 2 Problem Statement ................................................................................................................. 5 Purpose of the Study .............................................................................................................. 6 Significance of the Study ....................................................................................................... 7 Significance of the Study to Leadership ................................................................................ 8 Nature of the Study ............................................................................................................... 10 Research Questions ............................................................................................................... 14 Theoretical Framework ......................................................................................................... 14 Definitions of Terms.............................................................................................................. 16 Assumptions .......................................................................................................................... 17 Limitations and Delimitations ............................................................................................... 17 Summary ............................................................................................................................... 18 CHAPTER 2: LITERATURE REVIEW ............................................................................... 20 Principals’ Preparation and Leadership Effectiveness............................................................ 20 Integrating Leadership Theory in Leadership Practice……………………….……….......... 23 Principals’ Leadership Practice and Behavior Theory........................................................... 26 Principals’ Views of the Effectiveness of their Leadership Behavior.................................... 27 Leadership Style’s Impact on Teachers’ Job Satisfaction.......................................................31 Teachers’ Perceptions of Principals’ Leadership Styles………………………………….….32 Factors of Motivation in Educational Leadership................................................................... 36

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Impact of Leaders’ Personal Characteristics on Leadership Practices ................................... 39 Transformational Leadership Style and Teachers’ Motivation .............................................. 41 Teacher’s Views of Leadership’s Democratic, Cultural, and Personal Values………………43 Conceiving Leadership Style Effectiveness from Principals and Teachers’ Perspective…....45 Teacher-Leaders as an Element of Educational Leadership Practice...................................... 47 Core Job Characteristics: Teachers’ Views of Principals’ Leadership Characteristics…....... 50 Conclusion .............................................................................................................................. 53 Summary ................................................................................................................................. 54 CHAPTER 3: METHOD......................................................................................................... 57 Research Method and Design Appropriateness ...................................................................... 57 Research Questions ................................................................................................................. 61 Population……………………………………………………................................................ 62 Sampling Frame ...................................................................................................................... 62 Informed Consent......................................................................................................... 63 Confidentiality.............................................................................................................. 64 Data Collection......................................................................................................................... 65 Focus Groups................................................................................................................ 66 Interviews......................................................................................................................68 Instrumentation. ....................................................................................................................... 70 Validity and Reliability. ........................................................................................................... 71 Convergence with other sources................................................................................... 72 Extensive quotations from field notes and interviews.................................................. 73 Verification................................................................................................................... 73

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Translation .................................................................................................................... 75 Data Analysis ............................................................................................................................ 75 Data transcription............................................................................................................77 Data organizing…………………………………………………………………………….…….78 Analysis procedures…………………………………………………………………….……….78 Interpretation of data……………………………………………………………………….…...79 Summary……………………………...………………………………………………….…… 80 CHAPTER 4:RESULTS……………………………………………………………………….82 Demographic Analysis………………………………………………………………………....83 Data Gathering Methods……………………………………………………………………….86 Interview process………………………………………………………………………87 Focus group process………………………………………………………………………….…89 Initial Data Categories………………………………………………………….……………….……….91 Clarification of Themes………………………………………………………………….…......93 Theme 1: Effective Leadership………………………………………………….……..93 Sub theme 1: Concepts of effective leadership……………………….....……..94 Sub theme 2: Elements of effective leadership…………………….……….….94 Theme 2: Leadership Approaches……...………………………………………….…..95 Sub theme 1: Single versus multiple leadership styles………………….……..95 Sub theme 2: Theoretical and practical approaches…………….……………..95 Theme 3: Perceptions of Leadership…………………………….…….……..........…..96 Sub theme 1: Differences and similarities of perceptions…….………….……96 Sub theme 2: Positions and demands…………………………..……….....…..97

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Theme 4: Shared Leadership…………………………………………….….........……97 Sub theme 1: Leadership responsibilities………………………….…………..97 Sub theme 2: Leader's role……………………………..….………….…..…...98 Theme 5: Motivational Leadership……………………………...…………….…........98 Sub theme 1: Personal characteristics……………………...……….……...….98 Sub theme 2: Transformational leadership………………………….......……..98 Summary…………………………………………………………………………………..…..99 Conclusions…………………………………………………………………………….……..100 CHAPTER 5: CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS...........................................101 Research Method…………………………………………………………………....…..……101 Conclusions………………………………………………………………………….….….....102 Effective Leadership……………………………………………………………...…..104 Approaches of Leadership…………………………………………….……….……..105 Perceptions of Leadership……………………………………………….………..…..107 Shared Leadership……………………………………………………….………..…..109 Motivational Leadership………………………………………………….………..…112 Implications……………………………………………………………………….……...…...115 Implications for General Practice…………………………………...…………….…….….....118 Recommendations for Future Research……………………………………………......…...…119 Final Summary……………………………………..………………………………..….…......120 REFERENCES…………………………………………………………………….…………....……....122 APPENDIX A: PRINCIPAL INFORMED CONSENT: PARTICIPANTS 18 YEARS OF AGE AND OLDER……………………...…………………………………………..…….....136

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APPENDIX B: TEACHER INFORMED CONSENT: PARTICIPANTS 18 YEARS OF AGE AND OLDER…………………………………………………………………………………...…138 APPENDIX C: PRINCIPAL LEADERSHIP INTREVIEW QUESTIONS…….....….…..….140 APPENDIX D: PARTICIPANT INTRODUCTORY LETTER.…………...………….……...142 APPENDIX E: FOCUS GROUPS' QUESTIONS...……………………………………….....143 APPENDIX F: TABLE 3 INERVIEWEES DEMOGRAPHIC DESCRIPTION…..………...144 APPENDIX G: TABLE 4 FOCUS GROUP DEMOGRAPHIC DESCRIPTION………....…145

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LIST OF TABLES Table 1 Summary Demographic Data of Interviews………………………………………....………85 Table 2 Main Themes……………………………………………………………………………..……...90 Table 3 Interviewees Demographic Description……………………………………………....143 Table 4 Focus Group Demographic Description…………..……………………...…………..144

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CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION Studies have showed the importance of a principal’s role in school reform and staff development programs (Elenkov & Manev, 2005; Glover, 2007). Establishing a positive relationship between principals and their teachers is a very important strategy in educational leadership. According to Elsegeiny (2005), principals spend most of their time in leadership activities and their involvement in classroom learning has become limited. Moreover, principals’ leadership responsibilities have become more challenging than ever before, requiring implementing collaborative leadership practice. Leadership development programs are an essential element of school reform that has gained the attention of many educators and researchers (Can 2009). Leadership styles that involve shared leadership practice by empowering teachers are among effective leadership methodologies that motivate teachers (Davis & Wilson, 2000). On the other hand, empowering teachers by sharing leadership responsibilities can be a major source for conflict between principals and their teachers (Davis & Wilson). Further, some studies showed a strong connection between a teacher’s commitment and school improvement programs that justified the need to focus on teachers’ perceptions of effective leadership practice (Kitsantas & Ware, 2007; Richards, 2007). In other words, teachers’ view of principals’ leadership practices may have a direct impact on their performance and help improve students’ achievement (Richards). Chapter 1 provides an overview of the research problem and explains the importance of discussing the relationship between principals’ leadership styles and teacher motivation (Gordon, 2003). To explore the roots of the research problem, chapter 1 discussed the theoretical concepts of school leadership and the practical interpretation of principals’ leadership practices. In addition, chapter 1 illustrated the nature of the study, as well as the background of the research

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problem and introduced the research questions. A brief discussion of the study’s scope, limitations, and delimitation took place to provide a clear understanding of the nature of the study and the construction of the research sample. Background of the Problem Lack of teachers’ performances is an important factor in the lack of students’ achievements and more than one factor negatively influences teacher performance. For instance, teacher job dissatisfaction constitutes a major cause for teacher lack of performance. According to Can (2009), several factors cause teachers’ job dissatisfaction. Low salaries, overcrowded classrooms, difficult to accomplish standards, lack of parental support, and work conditions directly influence the level of teacher satisfaction (Can). Unfortunately, there is a lack of information in the literature about the impact of teachers’ perceptions of principals’ leadership behaviors on teacher motivation (Gordon & Patterson, 2006). Because of the increasing demand of high quality education, more standards and requirements have taken place that have made the school system become more complicated and added more responsibilities to what teachers and principals already have. Leadership practice of school principals not only affects teachers’ performance but also influences students’ achievements. The impact of principals on students’ achievements is not as direct and obvious as that of teachers; nonetheless, principals affect student’s achievement through their teachers by motivating teachers to be effective educators (Marks & Printy, 2006). Reaching a high level of achievement for students is a result of a positive interaction between teachers and principals. According to Danielson (2007), knowledge about teachers’ contributions to school leadership are not clear because of the lack of opportunities to integrate teachers’ experience in leadership practice and reform. More research about teacher-principal

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interaction will provide a better understanding of a possible integration of both teachers’ and principals’ perceptions in leadership development programs (Cunningham & Sherman, 2008). Creating a positive leader-teacher relationship and interaction is an essential quality of educational leadership that principals can implement to motivate teachers to improve the effectiveness of their teaching practice. Many school principals implement one-way communication and require the same work procedures from all teachers that influences the way teachers interact with principals and other teachers (Zainal, 2008). As part of school reform and leadership development, many principals’ preparation programs have focused on the leadership qualities principals need to encourage teachers’ involvement in school reform (Presthus, 2006). School leaders’ abilities to create positive work climates could make school leadership practice more effective. In fact, school principals are solely responsible for acquiring necessary leadership competences to drive changes in their school’s performance (Abu Bakar, Abu Samah, Afshari, Fooi, & Su Luan, 2008). Many studies have linked the success of any school system not only to the appropriateness of leadership styles that take place but also to the leadership ability of individuals who execute leadership strategies (Gordon & Patterson, 2006; Zainal, 2008). Unfortunately, a unified definition of leadership effectiveness does not exist, and to distinguish individuals’ views of effective leadership, both teachers and principals’ perceptions are important. Any reform in school leadership strategies must compare the perceptions of teachers to those of principals. Studies suggested that leadership effectiveness depends on not only leader’s behavior but also on the match of the teacher’s perception to that of the principal’s (Burke, Feinberg, & Ostroff, 2005; Davis & DeValerio, 2006). The way teachers view principals’ leadership practices may determine the nature of the relationship between teachers

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and principals. In fact, teachers’ perceptions of principals’ leadership behaviors can provide a valid source of feedback principals can use to improve their leadership effectiveness. Furthermore, teachers’ perceptions of principals’ leadership behaviors contribute effectively to the process of selecting and recruiting principals for school leadership positions (Cranston, 2007). Principals’ lack of essential leadership skills is one problem many school systems face. Many leadership programs in educational institutes lack the ability to link leadership theoretical concepts to real life practice (Sherman, 2008). Many school principals do not take leadership courses in colleges and obtain most of their leadership skills from their personal observation and principal internship programs (Fleck, 2008). New principals depend on training through the principal internships provided by senior principals, and with the change in principals’ responsibilities, leadership preparation programs need to be relevant to the field training. In Yemen, as in many developing countries, research-based leadership programs have not gained the attention of the educational system (Elsegeiny, 2005). Unfortunately, the available literature focuses on Western perspectives of school leadership practice and the information about “cross-national contextual differences that affect leadership effectiveness” (Brown & Conrad, 2007, p. 181) in the literature is not sufficient. Ineffective leadership practice as a factor of teachers’ lack of motivation and job satisfaction in Yemen is not as obvious as other factors are because, the educational system in Yemen faces more important challenges such as, lack of resources and unstable environment. As a result, the impact of principals’ leadership practice has not gained the attention of many educators in Yemen. Further, studying the relationship between principals’ leadership behaviors and teacher motivation needs to address the relevancy between

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the factors of teachers’ lack of motivation, such as work condition and low salaries, and principals’ leadership practices. Problem Statement The problem is that ineffective leadership practice by some elementary school principals in Yemen has negatively influenced teacher motivation. Teachers are not actively involved in school reform and development programs. Principals need to exhibit new leadership practices that will improve teacher effectiveness. Many factors influence teacher job satisfaction, including work conditions, low salaries, difficult mandated standards, lack of parental support, overcrowded classrooms, and teachers’ relationships with school administrators (Can, 2009). Among the factors of job dissatisfaction, teachers’ perceptions of principals’ attitudes and leadership styles is an important factor. Studies have proven the existence of the relationship between principals’ leadership practice and teachers’ perceptions of effective leadership (Elenkov & Manev, 2005; Richards, 2007). In fact, principals’ leadership styles may play a major role in teachers’ involvement in school reform and development programs (Birky, Headley, & Shelton, 2006). Research has provided evidence that teachers’ dissatisfaction influences the efficiency of in-classroom instruction, and as a result, student achievement (Saint, 2007). Teachers’ relationships with school principals are an essential factor of job dissatisfaction and a major cause of teacher attrition (Can, 2009). Teacher attrition is a consequence of inadequate leadership conduct that creates serious challenges for an educational system that already suffers from a teacher’s shortage. The lack of scientific research leading to implementing new and effective methodologies has influenced the efforts to reform leadership practice within educational systems (Cranston, 2007).

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This qualitative phenomenological study explored the influence of principals’ leadership style on teacher motivation by examining teachers’ and principals’ perceptions of existing leadership practice. The study used qualitative approach for data collection and analysis. Exploring real life experience of professionals from the field is a main function of qualitative method that was suitable for complex issues such as school leadership (Gilboa, Hesse, Lobdell, & Mendola, 2005). The process integrated in-depth interviews with 10 school principals and focus groups involving 80 teachers from 10 private schools in a large school district in Yemen. Selected participants are educators who have at least five years of experience in education. In addition, targeting the largest school district in Yemen is important because it contains mixed society classes that could help generalizing results for other school districts in Yemen. More importantly, the selected school district has the largest number of private schools in the country. Purpose of the Study The purpose of this qualitative phenomenological grounded study was to examine the impact of principals’ leadership practice on teacher motivation and to determine to what extent implementing different leadership styles can enhance principal leadership effectiveness. The study explored elements of effective leadership practices from the perspective of teachers and principals. The study tested the relationship between principals’ leadership conduct and teachers’ job satisfaction and performance. The study examined the link between teachers’ perceptions of principals’ leadership practice and other factors that influence teachers’ job satisfaction, such as low salaries, overcrowded classrooms, difficult to accomplish standards, lack of parental support, and work conditions. This study used a qualitative research method to explore leadership theories and practices that can help motivate teachers and increase teachers’ involvement in learning activities. The

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study evaluated the leadership practices of ten school principals in ten elementary schools in a large school district in Yemen. All selected principals participated in individual one-on-one interviews. In addition, 80 teachers, 8 teachers from each selected school, participated in focus groups. The purpose of interviews and focus groups was to explore teachers and principals’ perceptions of the existing leadership practice in elementary schools, and examine the leadership styles that principals can use to improve leadership effectiveness. To determine the effectiveness of leadership styles already in place, the study helped principals evaluate their leadership practice by comparing their perceptions of leadership effectiveness to that of teachers. The study analyzed principals’ perceptions of their leadership styles and measured the outcomes using teachers’ assessments of their leadership practice in comparison. Throughout the process, the study examined the impact of the leadership techniques principals implement on teachers’ motivation in Yemen. The qualitative method was an appropriate method to collect and analyze data for broad topics, such as school leadership. School leadership is a complex issue that requires a deep understanding of the existing leadership practice and to explore in depth the school leadership phenomenon, a qualitative approach was more suitable for the study than quantitative (Creswell, 2005). In-depth interviews, as well as focus group interviews, helped exploring leadership effectiveness concepts from two different perspectives. While, one-on-one interviews with principals helped define effective leadership practice from an administrative perception, focus groups provided an opportunity to acquire teachers’ perceptions of effective leadership. Significance of the Study Examining the relationship between principals’ leadership styles and teachers’ perceptions of principals’ leadership practice explained the importance of integrating teachers’

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perceptions in leadership development and reform. The lack of practical training and relevancy in principal preparation programs has influenced principals’ abilities to transform leadership theoretical knowledge into practice (Gordon & Patterson, 2006). Many of the current leadership preparation programs focus on the top-bottom direction of the interaction between principals and teachers (Fleck, 2008). The notion that leaders are the key factor in effective leadership has been the focus of the literature and leadership development programs (Gordon & Patterson, 2006). The literature and leadership preparation programs focused on leaders as a key factor in leadership effectiveness and ignored teacher perspectives of effective leadership practice. For a collaborative work environment, principals need to integrate effective leadership practice and benefit from skills and experiences of all staff within their schools. In other words, leadership approaches that incorporate teacher leadership perceptions enable school principals to evaluate current leadership practices and integrate new methodologies in school leadership (Johnson, 2008). Most of the knowledge found in the literature reflects the impact of teachers’ perceptions of leadership behavior of principals from a Western perspective (Brown & Conrad, 2007). The study discussed the same topic from a cross-national perspective and examined teachers’ perceptions of leadership conduct in a developing country. Examining the effect of the leadership behavior of principals in Yemen filled a gap in the literature and added another view of implementing different leadership practices in different cultures. Significance of the Study to Leadership Cranston (2007) discussed the impact of effective leadership practice on employees’ performance and suggested more in-depth investigations of the issue of leadership style as a motivation factor. Studying the relationship between principals’ leadership styles and teachers’ motivation bought an attention to the influence of personal and professional leadership qualities

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on leadership effectiveness (Can, 2009). The significance of the study comes from its relevancy to a new approach of research. The study focused on studying educational leadership within the interaction between principals’ leadership practices and teachers’ perceptions of effective leadership (Johnson, 2008). For school leaders, identifying effective and ineffective teachers is an essential leadership skill that allows principals to design leadership strategies based on skill inventory of teachers (Jacob & Lefgren, 2008). Understanding the way teachers perceive principals’ leadership practices was vital for examining the effect of certain leadership qualities on teacher motivation. School leadership has been a main issue of leadership theory and practice throughout the development of leadership studies (Gordon & Patterson, 2006). Effective leadership practice in schools takes place when both principals and teachers share leadership responsibilities (Marks & Printy, 2006). Sharing responsibilities through a positive interaction between principals and teachers introduces an effective collaborative leadership approach (Franco & Hambright, 2007). In schools, operational and instructional leadership exist collaboratively in two levels: leader- teacher and teacher-student (Hoerr, 2008). The transition of leadership methodologies through both levels is dynamic and reflects the nature of team leadership approaches (Loeser, 2008). The dynamic interaction between different levels in school leadership can provide a general understanding of the nature of collaborative leadership in social organizations (Hoerr). Examining leadership effectiveness from the perspective of teachers is important to leadership preparation programs because teachers’ feedback helps identify essential skills for effective leadership (Lovegrove, 2008). Not only could the content of teachers’ feedback make a difference, the concept of considering teachers’ perceptions of effective leadership practice affects the design and strategy of leadership preparation programs (Daresh, 2007). The study

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could contribute to an unconventional approach of leadership that focuses on educational leadership instead of educational administration. Many leadership preparation programs have introduced new types of principal preparation programs that reshape principals’ preparation processes “through new collaborative opportunities” (Orr, 2006, p. 494). Nature of the Study The current qualitative study examined the existence of the relationship between principals’ views of their leadership practice and teachers’ views of their principals’ leadership styles. The study also examined the influence, if there was any, of teachers’ perceptions of principals’ leadership behaviors on their job satisfaction. By analyzing the responses of participants to interviews and focus groups questions, the study revealed the relationship between effective leadership styles and teacher motivation. In addition, using a qualitative approach for the study was adequate to analyze themes of the phenomenon through exploring the practical experiences of principals and teachers. Different situations and cultures could affect human behavior that makes a qualitative approach more suitable to explore teachers’ perceptions in different settings using multiple sources of information (Burke, et al., 2005). A qualitative study allows a space for interaction between participants and moderators and provides an opportunity for reflection (Creswell, 2005). The reason for selecting the qualitative method was to explore general themes by examining individuals’ experiences and observing participants’ behaviors in different situations (Burke et al., 2005). Current literature has discussed many factors that influence teacher performance, including leadership practice, from a non-cultural perspective, mostly from the Western perspective (Brown & Conrad, 2007). In fact, information about the leadership behavior in elementary schools in Yemen in the literature is very little, therefore, making the

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nature of the study exploratory. In addition, there is a lack of information about the impact of principals’ leadership behaviors on teacher motivation. According to Beanlands and Vishnevsky (2004), qualitative research is an adequate research method when there is little information about a phenomenon. An important limitation of qualitative research is that the method depends on participants’ individual descriptions of a phenomenon, and findings may not be applicable for others out of the research study setting (Beanlands & Vishnevsky). As the purpose of the study was to explore common themes and broad understandings of the perceptions of both teachers and principals, quantitative research was not an appropriate method in collecting and analyzing data. Using an instrumental approach would not fit the purpose of the study and the structure of participants for two reasons. First, obtaining accurate statistical data for a quantitative study is difficult in a developing country such as Yemen that has unstable and undeveloped educational system. Second, there was a lack of educational research in the selected geographic location. As a result, finding a tested instrument for the study was very difficult and the time frame of this study will not allow developing and testing a new instrument. In addition, exploring the perceptions of mostly experienced teachers and principals requires purposeful sampling selection that best fits the qualitative rather than the quantitative approach (Creswell, 2005). Exploring the impact of principal’s leadership style on teacher motivation required an examination of the phenomenon from the perspective of teachers and principals. Therefore, the population of the study consisted of 10 elementary school principals and 80 elementary teachers. The sample size of one principal and eight teachers from each school was suitable for data collection methods for two reasons. First, the typical number of participants in focus groups is 5- 12 people (Camara, Drummond, & Jackson, 2007). Second, schools in Yemen must separate

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female students and teachers from male students and teachers, as the law requires; therefore, selecting four female and four male teachers from each school provided an opportunity to address gender factor. Participants were principals who have been in the same title for at least seven years and teachers with at least five years of teaching experience. Purposeful selection of sampling provided a better opportunity to explore the phenomenon based on sufficient practical experience (Creswell, 2005). Assistant principals and administrators other than principals did not participate because the purpose of the study was to explore the direct relationship between principals’ leadership behaviors and teacher motivation. As an exploratory study, data collection focused on exploring general and broad themes of the phenomenon using participants lived experiences. The study consisted of two main strategies of data collection: interviews and focus groups. Ten elementary school principals participated in interviews to explore their perceptions of effective leadership practice and the possible implementation of such practice in motivating teachers. The design of interview question depended on the research questions, the research problem statement, and the purpose statement. Eight teachers from each of the ten elementary schools participated in focus groups. Focus group’s questions examined teachers’ perceptions of effective leadership conduct based on teachers’ perceptions of principals’ leadership behaviors. The process and the questions of interviews and focus groups integrated the components of transformational leadership style as an example of effective leadership strategy (Wai-Yin Lo, 2005). Examining principals’ leadership performance based on components of transformational leadership style helped to determine the extent to which principals’ current leadership conduct was effective. According to Drysdale and Gurr (2008), leadership behaviors of not only principals but also many school administrators follow the trend of transformational leadership

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style. The design of the focus group questions helped teachers identify the effectiveness of principals’ leadership practices by comparing principals’ current leadership practices to a transformational leadership style. Exhibiting transformational style’s components was rational when leaders tend to reflect their perspectives of leadership strategies and model them for subordinates (Rose, 2007). In addition, using transformational leadership as a model for effective leadership drove the process of recording and organizing teachers’ responses into themes describing essential components of transformational leadership style. To test the validity of the interview and focus group’s questions, principals had the opportunity to review the final draft of the interview recordings to validate the accuracy of the information. In addition, comparing teachers’ responses to principals’ responses was an essential step of the process of data analysis. In fact, determining the extent to which teachers’ responses match or differ from principals’ responses was vital to identify the effect of each perception on the other. Further, comparing teachers and principals’ responses to previous knowledge in the literature about effective leadership practices could be a valid method to test and validate interview and focus group’s questions. The nature of the study, including the research method, sample type and size, data collection method, and data analysis method matched its purpose. The design and process of data collection helped present outcomes as a list of general themes. Findings of the study appeared in textual format as general themes and suggestions in chapter four. The findings of the study provided a clear explanation of the phenomenon and determine the extent to which implementing effective leadership styles motivates teachers.

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Research Questions The purpose of this study was to determine the impact of principals’ leadership styles on teachers’ motivation. The design of the research questions helped ease the process of examining the impact of teachers’ job satisfaction on teacher motivation. Research questions discussed two major factors: first was the relationship between principals’ leadership styles and teacher motivation. The second factor was the relationship between teachers’ job satisfaction and their motivation and involvement in learning activities. The research study explored the following questions: 1- What is the relationship between the leadership style of a school’s principal and teachers’ motivation? 2- How do teacher perceive the effectiveness of their principals’ leadership practice? 3- What influence does teachers’ job satisfaction have on motivation and willingness to implement creative teaching methodologies? 4- What does effective leadership mean to principals and teachers in private schools in Yemen? 5- What is the difference between teachers’ perceptions and principals’ perceptions of the efficiency of current leadership practices in private schools in Yemen? Theoretical Framework The theoretical framework of the study came within theories in educational leadership and leadership development and innovation. During the past two decades, research has focused on teachers’ involvement in leadership practice as an essential part of the process of school reform (Birky et al., 2006). Studies in educational leadership and leadership developments have linked leader-teacher collaboration to successful school leadership practices (Birky, et al.;

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Cunningham & Sherman, 2008). According to Can (2009), human studies have discussed human personality and the influence of individuals’ differences and uniqueness on their performance and effectiveness. Effectiveness of principals’ leadership practice relies on either changing the work climate to encourage teachers’ innovation or adjusting the leadership strategy to fit different work situations (Elsegeiny, 2005). Integrating leadership theories into practice in educational leadership is not different from that of other fields. It depends on principals’ talents and skills that can determine the extent to which such a leadership style matches the needs of a school setting (Gunbayl, 2005). Many people, including politicians, have shown an interest in integrating new leadership styles into school leadership conduct (Jantzi & Leithwood, 2006). Nonetheless, individual differences among school settings make transforming leadership theoretical knowledge into practice a challenge. In fact, the problem in educational leadership is not the lack of theory but in finding the adequate methodology to transform leadership theory into practical leadership strategies (Cunningham & Sherman, 2008). Principal preparation programs are an essential factor in leadership development in educational leadership. Unfortunately, many leadership preparation programs lack relevancy and the ability to connect the information principals receive in preparation programs to leadership practice (Cunningham & Sherman, 2008). The lack of practical training in leadership preparation programs has influenced principals’ leadership skills and has increased the “attrition rate of new teachers and principals” (Knox, 2005, p. 60). Implementing a combination of different leadership styles rather than using a single leadership method is an effective alternative to traditional leadership techniques (Drysdale & Gurr, 2008). In addition, the focus of many

Full document contains 158 pages
Abstract: This phenomenological qualitative study examined the impact of leadership styles on teacher motivation. The current study focused on the exploration of the lived experience of participants regarding the effectiveness of school leadership. The process of data collection contained two main methods; interviews and focus groups. Ten school principals were interviewed and 80 teachers participated in focus groups to discuss the possible impact of the type of leadership style on teacher motivation from the perspectives of principals and teachers. The findings of the study showed the importance of integrating multiple leadership styles in a school for an effective leadership practice. Findings also showed that effective leadership styles such as, transformational and situational leadership approaches could constitute an important factor to increase teachers' job satisfaction and motivation. Suggestions for future leadership practice and further studies are included in the study.