Exploration of the Influence of Principals' Soft Skills on Student Achievement

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Evangelista, Eric
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The examined problem was principals' lack of soft skills such as teamwork and adaptability, which can affect student achievement. Specifically, this qualitative research explored how principals used soft skills such as teamwork and adaptability to influence student achievement scores with a qualitative phenomenological design. The ABC Public School System consists of 20 principals, specifically, nine elementary school principals, five middle school principals, and six high school principals. The targeted sample was an equal allocation stratified random sample consisting of two principals per stratum, with a total sample size of six principals. This research used a virtual individual interview instrument to collect the data and MAXQDA (Creswell & Creswell, 2020) to analyze the information from the recorded and transcribed interviews to generate themes related to the principals' soft skills of teamwork and adaptability. The beneficiaries of this study are the commissioner of education, board of education, and other school community stakeholders, as they are responsible for making informed decisions when transferring and hiring principals for the school district. This study provides several recommendations for further research, such as examining the perception of teachers of their soft skills of teamwork and adaptability and their influence on student achievement scores with a qualitative approach and exploring the difference in student achievement scores before and after the pandemic, which is beyond the scope of this research. For the recommendations for action, practitioners can use their soft skills of teamwork and adaptability during faculty meetings. Soft skills are essential to educational leadership, as skills such as teamwork and adaptability can influence student achievement scores, which in turn can determine the effectiveness of principals as leaders.
soft skills, principals, student achievement, adaptability, teamwork, effective leader