Transforming Leadership in Higher Education Institutions

Maintaining quality in education requires us to follow the Bible’s instruction to work enthusiastically as though we are working for God rather than for human masters.

School Environment August 1, 2019

Challenged by the dynamic international context of education, administrators of highly competitive tertiary institutions seek to modify policies in order to sustain quality education. Various scholars state that educational administrators find it difficult to spread out values and goals among academic staff in tertiary education mainly because of the absence of a positive organizational culture and leadership style. This is the pillar of Total Quality Management implementation in universities and colleges.

However, Total Quality Management does not find an appropriate path to practical implementation due to the absence of a particular leadership style. Specifically, there is a lack of necessary authority to deploy values and goals through the layers of institutional departments. Hill et al. (2015) deduce that there is also a demand for an organizational culture that could function as a kind of control because administrators influence the kind of norms and values that develop in an institution. Furthermore,  according to a 2012 article in the International Journal of Academic Research in Business and Social Sciences,total and continuous quality improvement is a progressive journey but not a destination because it has neither gained an explicit beginning nor a foreseen output.” Thus, Total Quality Management, as a construct of educational management, is a useful rubric in determining how to do the institutional planning and to observe and practice benchmarking while considering the university’s levels of capability and cope-ability.

Members of an institution show adaptability of the organizational culture through their involvement, consistency, and by being supportive of the mission. Of equal importance is their response to the way school administrators communicate with them in different leadership styles, while accomplishing their individual tasks. This is necessary in order to have a continuous improvement for successful Total Quality Management in education. However, inevitably, situations of communication with unclear instructions and misrepresentations between subordinates and administrators will arise. When this happens, loyalty and commitment toward the institution lessen, prompting faculty to become apathetic in accomplishing their jobs.

In creating an organizational culture, the most essential requirement for success is to overly attend to leadership styles, worker mindset, and culture in order to ensure the organization’s success and overall transformation. If all involved are not willing to change their mindsets towards continuous improvement, the organization may be held back from achieving their end goal. Administrators particularly are included in this and must walk the talk they are requiring from the institution.

It is therefore recommended that administrators look into the significance of having full commitment concerning the Total Quality Management process. This means applying a transformational leadership style and providing tertiary institutions with a range of Total Quality Management ideas from which to select those that best fit their situations. Leaders must provide a concrete tool, wherein teachers can draw the importance of their support and commitment for continuous improvement through effective Total Quality Management training programs. Every school individual must exercise continuous improvement and self-evaluation for the approach to succeed.

Above all, maintaining quality in education requires us to follow the Bible’s instruction to work enthusiastically as though we are working for God rather than for human masters (Colossians 3:23).


Aldaweesh, M., & Gallear, D. (2013). The Effective Implementation of Total Quality Management and Leadership in Saudi Universities: A Review and Framework to Enhancing H.E. Strategy. European, Mediterranean & Middle Eastern Conference on Information Systems.

Hill, C. W., Jones, & Schilling, M. A. (2015). Strategic Management Theory: An Integrated Approach (11th ed.). Stamford, CT: Cengage Learning.

Zakuan, N. & Jalil, R. (2012). Critical Success Factors of Total Quality Management Implementation in Higher Education Institution: A Review. International Journal of Academic Research in Business and Social Sciences, 2(12), 19-32.


Tess Belarmino

Teresita, MAED, Ed. D. candidate, and TEFL/TESOL certified teacher, is an English instructor at the Adventist University of the Philippines. She has been an English teacher for 12 years, and has also served as a Language Center Coordinator, Spanish teacher, resource speaker, professional development coordinator, Sabbath School teacher and community extension worker.


  • | September 17, 2019 at 9:51 pm

    I have read it….very well written…the thoughts are so clear and vivid and an ideal towards achieving successful TQM.

  • | September 22, 2019 at 4:44 am

    I agree . . . . in-service training programs must be conducted for effective implementation of the TQM. And yes! Administrators should set the pace, and be visible, steady models for its success.

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