The primary purpose of this study was to determine the behaviors of an ethical leader as perceived by tenured and tenure-track faculty at a research university (RU/VH) in the southeastern portion of the United States. The researcher utilized a researcher-designed survey instrument which consisted of twenty possible behaviors of an ethical leader and selected demographic characteristics.
Examination of the study results revealed that the majority of respondents were male (66.20%) and tenured (75.00%). Additionally, the largest group were Professors (49.60%), and had been at the study institution for less than l0 years (38.20%). The characteristics that were most related to the overall behaviors of an ethical leader were age and gender of the respondent. Older respondents and those that were identified as female had higher perceptions of the behaviors of an ethical leader in higher education.
Behaviors can be directly observed, and therefore, the researcher recommends that further research be conducted to determine the level of relationship between the ratings of traits and behaviors. If a strong relationship is found between these characteristics (traits and behaviors) the development of a measuring instrument to make direct observations of an individual's behaviors can possibly be developed as surrogate measures of a person's traits.
Additionally, since female faculty seemed to have more clearly focused perceptions regarding the behaviors of an ethical leader, the researcher recommends that the University increase the emphasis on diversity (especially gender diversity) in all aspects of the organization. The increased diversity would include increasing the number of females hired in the tenure-track position, more females in various committee services (especially in hiring university leaders), and promoting more females to serve in leadership positions, especially, senior executive positions.
Hubchen, Jonathan; Wyatt, Samuel L.; and Burnett, Michael
"Ethical Leadership: A Study of Behaviors of Leaders in Higher Education Today,"
The Journal of Values-Based Leadership: Vol. 17
, Article 15.
Available at: https://scholar.valpo.edu/jvbl/vol17/iss1/15