Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education



First Advisor

Dr. Shelly Fransen

Second Advisor

Dr. Merlyn Johnson

Third Advisor

Dr. Danny Humble


Due to the challenges schools and school administrators face in the 21st century, transformational leadership is considered the most effective approach to school leadership (Bonsu & Twum-Danso, 2018; Longwell-McKean, 2012; Valentine & Prater, 2011). The purpose of this explanatory, sequential, mixed-methods study was to investigate the importance of cultivating transformational leadership qualities and traits within secondary school principals through professional development opportunities, networking experiences, and mentorships. There has been a lack of research on the need to train in transformational leadership and whether or not it positively influences follower outcomes (Peters, 2014; Tafvelin, 2013; Udin, 2020). Phase one data were collected from secondary school principals who were members of the Southwest Missouri Association of Secondary School Principals via a survey. Phase two focus group discussion questions were developed after analysis of survey responses. Analysis of focus group discussion data revealed five emergent themes: feedback, vulnerability, intentional relationships, professional growth, and COVID-19. Implications of this study include secondary school principals cultivating transformational leadership qualities and traits through one or more of the four components of transformational leadership; transformational leadership qualities and traits can be cultivated within secondary school principals through professional development, networking, and mentorships; and school districts should provide professional development, networking, and mentorship experiences for secondary school principals that focus on transformational leadership qualities and traits.


Copyright 2022, Christian S. Overstreet.

Included in

Education Commons