Influence of managerial skills on performance of heads of departments in public secondary schools in Nairobi East District
Nguu, Margaret Ruguru
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The purpose of the study was to investigate the influence of managerial skills on the performance of H.O.D's in Nairobi East public secondary schools. The study was aimed at determining the extent to which leadership skills; conceptual skills, human skills and technical skills affected performance of H.O.D's with a view to recommending solutions. The target population was all HODs in public secondary schools in Nairobi East District, Kenya. The study adopted a census survey in which data was collected by means of questionnaires and interview schedules. Data was analyzed using descriptive statistics and inferential statistics generated from Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS). The study findings revealed that managerial skills such as leadership skills, human skills, conceptual skills and technical skills are important in improving performance in secondary schools. The managerial skills are not mutually exclusive thus heads of departments and other administrators in secondary schools must apply different skills for effective leadership. School administrators need to be competent in coordinating departmental activities in the school, have the ability to inspire loyalty among staff, good human relation skills and effective communication skills on matters related to their area of leadership. School administrators can improve performance of their schools through conceptual skills such as the ability to solve problems arising in the course of duty and the ability to analyze situations, determine cause of problems and cultivate good work relationships. Effective management requires good negotiation skills, good listening skills, the ability to solve conflicts and the ability to motivate staff. Effective administrators are those who effectively teach their subject of specialization, keep records of work covered regularly, keep records of schemes of work of subjects in the department and keep records of continuous assessments and external examination. The study findings indicated that majority of HODs are not technologically updated and have not kept abreast of Educational Management Information Systems (EMIS). The study recommends continuous training of school administrators in managerial skills, effective monitoring and evaluation of implementation of policies that govern adoption of Information Communication Technology (lCT) in schools and continuous in-service training to update managerial skills. The study recommends further investigation on influence of managerial skills in other areas in Kenya, including primary schools, in order to make better generalizations.