Personality and leadership behavior of New Jersey school board presidents

Frank Anthony Calabria, Fordham University


This study used Cattell's Theory of Personality and Hersey and Blanchard's Three Dimensional Theory of Effective Leadership to determine the self-perceived personality traits, group maturity, and leadership style, behavior,and effectiveness of New Jersey School Board Presidents. Furthermore, this study sought to determine if age, sex, number of years serving on the board of education, education, type of board, recruitment of new board members, partisanship, reason for serving, are related to the board president's group maturity, leadership style, behavior, and effectiveness. Finally this study sought to determine if board members perceptions corresponded with the president's perceptions of group maturity and leadership style, behavior, and effectiveness. Conclusions. (a) a definite pattern emerged with regard to personality as well as definite leadership styles; (b) no significant relationship existed between leadership styles, group maturity, leadership effectiveness, and personality; (c) sensitivity, conscientiousness, the ability to take responsibility, and controlled behavior are strong indicators of leadership effectiveness; (d) there was no significant relationship between age, sex, type of board, recruitment, partisanship, and reason for serving with leadership style, effectiveness, or group maturity; (e) there is a significant relationship between the perceptions of board members and presidents on all variables. Recommendations. (a) this study should be replicated using a larger more varied sample; (b) the scope of the samples taken should be widened to include leaders in a variety of professions, government agencies and businesses; (c) similar studies be conducted using other measures of personality; (d) new instruments be developed and validated to study personality and leadership; (e) similar studies be conducted using one or more existing instruments; (f) this study be conducted using other theories of leadership; (g) educators and board members should be aware of the various constant traits of personality among board presidents; (h) board presidents should continually examine their leadership behavior to enhance their effectiveness; (i) board presidents evaluate the board members as to their perceptions of leadership style, behavior, and effectiveness; (j) workshops be initiated to assess leadership behavior and board members perceptions to help bring about greater cohesiveness; (k) a universal model of behavior be noted by superintendents as to board president and board member behavior; (l) this study be reviewed and disseminated to potential board presidents. (Abstract shortened with permission of author.)

Subject Area

School administration|Educational psychology

Recommended Citation

Calabria, Frank Anthony, "Personality and leadership behavior of New Jersey school board presidents" (1991). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI9136317.