The purpose of this research was to examine the impact of superintendent leadership practices on collective bargaining practices, procedures, and outcomes.
The target population of superintendents in the State of Illinois (N = 850) were requested to participate in the first phase of this study by completing the Leadership Practices Inventory and providing demographic information; 212 responded (25% response rate). The typical respondent was male (70%), with an average age of 49.7 years, and 6-7.99 years of experience (37%). Most (84%) had participated in collective bargaining, and 44 percent indicated they used interest-based bargaining and another 32 percent used a win-lose approach. One participant from each leadership practice participated in an in-person interview.
The most frequently practiced leadership behavior was Enabling, followed by Modeling, Encouraging, Challenging, and Inspiring. Average scores from the superintendent respondents were generally higher when compared to the Kouzes Posner normative database, with the greatest gap for Inspiring a Shared Vision. No significant differences were found between the leadership practices of those engaged in interest-based and win-lose bargaining tactics. No statistically significant difference between the leadership practices of participants were found on the basis of age, gender, or years of experience. Little evidence was found from the qualitative data that the leadership practices of superintendents are reflected in the language adopted in the new collective bargaining agreements.