Shared roles of leadership in a rebranding initiative of an international school in Singapore

1. INTRODUCTION (500 words)

The introduction will outline the change culture that this international school is undergoing currently and will further narrow down the rebranding structure and philosophy of this school from the perspective of the school leader. The literature on cultural leadership theories in higher education focuses on how organizational change is affected by identity politics, notions of loyalty, values of leaders, and types of institutional culture, climate, and history (Kezar, Carducci, & Contreras-McGavin, 2006). Hence the study will focus on how the school leaders are bringing about a change in identity in the school’s organisational culture. And as a consequence, how is this change in identity impacting the various stakeholders

Research Questions

1. What are the attitudes of school leaders towards implementing a change of branding in international schools?

Decision making process
– Decision making process in implementing a change culture:

Risk management
– Risk management that leads to effective change

2. What is the impact of this change on the various stakeholders (staff, students, parents) at the school?

Leadership as a change culture
Understanding the leaders behind the change of name (Instructional leadership model and transformatonal leadership style). School leaders as change agents based on their leadership style.

2. LITERATURE REVIEW (1500 words)

Conceptual framework:
The background of this research will lie behind the theoretical framework of transformational leadership as well as culture change in leadership/ Leadership models ( i.e., the strategic leadership needed to bring strategic change). Transformational leadership can be defined in terms of articulating a compelling vision for followers (Bass, 1985). It energizes people by providing them with an exciting vision for the future rather than providing them with rewards and punishments (Bartram & Casimir, 2007). It occurs when leaders and followers are united in their pursuit of higher level goals which are common to both (Sergiovanni, 2005).

Semi structured interview of the 3 school leaders and Marketing Director of the International School in question.
( I have to set up some structured questions and would appreciate some help in that matter) Each interview is meant to last about 45 minutes and being a qualitative research method, I will have to transcribe the interview as well and decode..

4. FINDINGS (1000 words)

The findings will show that the changes brought about were smooth because of communication between the “transformational leaders” and all stakeholders (staff members, parents ) etc..

5. DISCUSSION (1000 words)

I’m not sure what to write here..





Shared Roles of Leadership in a Rebranding Initiative of an International School in Singapore



Shared leadership alludes to the distribution of leadership roles across the organization, which is important in the delivery of services and management of change in learning institutions. This research focused on researching this phenomenon in the context of the rebranding of an international school in Singapore. With the progression of education in Singapore, it is important that educational institutions meet the learning needs as well as organizational objectives in the competitive education sector. This research was achieved through a qualitative research approach that entailed conducting interviews with three respondents from the French International school in the country. The research established that leadership across the organization was inherent in the achievements made in the rebranding process. The participants stated that there was a positive attitude associated with changes that improved the working environment and organizational performance. Nevertheless, the engagement of leaders across all levels was influenced by their relevance to the changes being made. With rebranding being led by the management, the most important roles were delegated to those in the administrative teams, but students, parents, and teachers had an opportunity to engage, where their roles were relevant to the objectives.

Keywords. Shared leadership, Change management, Rebranding, Leaders, International schools, Stakeholders.

Shared Roles of Leadership in a Rebranding Initiative of an International School in Singapore


Reviews by Naidoo, Gosling, Bolden, O’Brien, and Hawkins (2014) show that in the recent past, there has been increased interest in the need for branding in the education sector. Rebranding has emerged as a strategic move across the world, with institutional leaders taking it as a means of marketing products and services to the target customer base and as a way of strategizing organizational change. The need for quality education, coupled with the globalization phenomenon, has increased the number of international students seeking educational opportunities in Singapore. This has made it imperative for leaders in the education sector to formulate a solution that is effective in engaging all stakeholders, which include students and teachers in the international school setting (Stubbs & Warnaby, 2015). According to Reyes (2015), the economic development experienced in the country has influenced reforms in the education sector. The author argues that educational achievements in the nation can be compared with international benchmarks, which highlights the importance of international school settings in the country. Furthermore, Reyes (2015) states that there is a balanced spread of major ethnic groups in schools across the country. This is echoed in the fact that in 2006, the Progress in International Literacy Studies (PIRLS) ranked Singapore among the top three performing nations. Subsequently, strategic planning and change management need to be implemented in the education sector (McRoy & Gibbs, 2009).

Naidoo et al. (2014) show that leaders are increasingly engaging in changing the brand image of their institutions through construction, communication, and other initiatives that contribute to competitiveness and improved performance. In this context of change, Reyes (2015) reviews that the decentralization of leadership has been experienced in Singapore’s educational setting with the intent of increasing on-site autonomy. Nevertheless, this has presented substantial policy implications and various challenges for school leaders. This has been achieved through distributed leadership in the school system. Larsen and Rieckhoff (2014) state that distributed alludes to the process of leadership practice through an integrated approach that takes to account the thinking, behaviors, and situations of the leaders. The distribution of leadership entails the inclusion of all stakeholders, who include the management, educators, students, parents, and other key constitutes in the organization. With the notion that all stakeholders are engaged in the leadership efforts in the branding or rebranding initiative, there is little resistance to change. Additionally, this offers a better opportunity for the organization to benefit from maximum contribution, skills, and talents among the different stakeholders.

The application of distributed leadership in schools facilitates the engagement of an array of stakeholders that includes principals, vice principals, and other middle leaders in achieving the organizational objectives. Insights from Reyes (2015) show that the leadership or administration in the education setting has a substantial impact on the overall organizational performance. This makes it imperative to determine if the leadership or administration has a meaningful causal influence on outcomes in different organizational aspects (Harris, Leithwood, Day, Sammons, & Hopkins, 2007). In this context, leadership in the branding and rebranding of international schools impacts on various constituencies. The educators are key stakeholders in any learning environment. Like the management, the educators contribute to and are affected by change associated with rebranding. The delegation of responsibilities and the engagement of educators in decision making ensure that they are aligned with the objectives. The brand of the learning institution is offering the learners an identity that they associate with when learning and after school. Subsequently, there is a need for the management to involve learners through the distribution of leadership to minimize resistance to change among the learners as well as their parents or guardians.

From this perspective, this study intends to investigate the impact shared roles of leadership in a rebranding initiative within a French international school in Singapore offers an opportunity to understand the important aspects associated with leadership roles and the distribution of leadership in the school setting and how improvements can be made to guarantee success in the rebranding process. According to Kezar, Carducci, and Contreras-McGavin (2006), insights from the literature on cultural leadership theories show that higher education focuses on how organizational change is influenced by identity politics, loyalty, values embraces by leaders, the different types of institutional culture, climate, and history. In this light, this study focuses on how school leaders can influence change in identity in the school organizational culture, and how the change in identity impacts on different stakeholders in the rebranding context.

Research Questions

  • What are the attitudes of school leaders towards implementing a change of branding in international schools?
  • What is the impact of this change on the different stakeholders (staff, students, parents) at the school?


Singapore is among the leading countries in the provision of education based on international standards (Reyes, 2015). To maintain competitiveness and increased organizational performance, it is evident that schools in the country have to undertake the transformations that impact the organization’s culture, which presents numerous risks. Subsequently, there is a need for effective decision-making that is experienced in a situation of shared leadership roles in the school setting (Pearce & Sims Jr, 2002). This presents an array of risks that should be addressed to identify the opportunities and challenges that might be associated with the rebranding process where the leadership roles are shared (Miller, Merrilees, & Yakimova, 2014). In this context, leadership strategies play an imperative contribution in the cultural change process. According to Merrilees (2017), corporate rebranding offers an opportunity for good business acumen, but it is coupled with numerous challenges that should be addressed for success to be achieved in the organizational setting. These challenges emerge from various factors that impact on the organizational culture in the rebranding process that include the business environment, leadership, communication, and the management of various practices (Hatch & Schultz,2003). The business environment in where the organization operates is central in determining the culture embraced by all stakeholders, including aspects associated with the national culture, economic status, and the types of jobs within the schooling environment (Cortese, 2003). Leadership is subject to the aspects of commitment, respect, and attitudes towards services to all stakeholders. Communication highlights the change process that is most effective with adequate dissemination of information (Walumbwa & Lawler, 2003). Additionally, the change is effective with the commitment of the management to effectively engage in the change or rebranding process.

Decision-making process

Effective decision-making is an imperative aspect of leadership in organizational cultural change. An organizational culture entails various aspects that include the cumulative knowledge in organizational operations, the experience of people within the organization, beliefs, values, attitudes, meanings, hierarchies, religion, time, roles within the organization, spatial relations, material objects, and possessions by the organization, among an array of other factors that can be related or used to define a particular organization (Pfister & Hartmann, 2011; Reynierse & Harker, 1986; Chakravorti, 2011). From another perspective, Chakravorti (2011) alludes that culture entails aspects of communication, cultivated behavior, and the accumulated experience. In this light, organizational culture and the change it experiences are inherent to the leadership and rebranding strategies adopted in the education setting. Schools across the globe are increasingly adopting distributed leadership as a strategic approach that facilitates the effective running of the organization as well as increased efficiency in the adoption of the desired changes (Hatcher, 2005). Through distributed leadership, there is an opportunity to share the leadership roles that contribute to increased efficiency in not only motivating the workforce through autonomy and delegation of responsibilities but also in ensuring accountability in various responsibilities that support the change process (MacBeath, 2005).

The rebranding of international schools contributes to increased competitiveness in the global marketplace and in meeting the changing expectations of the target societies. Fundamentally, it influences a transformation in the organizational culture by influencing a change in the behaviors of the stakeholders engaged in organizational operations. Additionally, rebranding facilitates differentiation of the brand, which enables organizations to benefit from their cultural heritage and identity (Gilstrap & Smith, 2016). Subsequently, the decision-making process is a vital aspect of the achievements made in the rebranding process (Van Riel & Van Bruggen, 2002). This is important in ensuring a constructive link between the internal and external environment where the organization operates. This can be affected by the behaviors and attitudes of the leaders in the company as well as aspects associated with the organizational structure, such as how leadership roles are shared within the organization.

The connection between rebranding and stakeholders

The rebranding of schooling institutions is not only about the character of the organization, but also its reputation in the education sector. Additionally, a strong brand is often regarded as a static aspect of the organization that integrates images, characters, and symbols associated with the organization. However, in the modern-day understanding, rebranding goes beyond these aspects (Sataøen, 2015). This can be credited to the many stakeholders that are involved in the rebranding process. The rebranding process includes a range of activities and requirements that should be coordinated for effective outcomes to be achieved. This implies that the corporate image an institution develops impacts on the consumers’ self-image, which makes effective management important to ensure the satisfaction of all stakeholders. This includes managing the perceived structures of the attitudes, opinions, beliefs, and prejudices associated with the organization (Simões, Dibb, & Fisk, 2005). For the international learning insitutions, there is a need to engage the management team, teachers, students, parents, as well as the relevant government agencies to develop a brand that is adequately acceptable and which improves the image linked with the school. Sharing leadership responsibilities can contribute to the effectiveness of identifying the roles and contributions that can be made by each of the stakeholder groups in the rebranding process (Sataøen, 2015). With increased support in the leadership context, there can be an effective transfer of information, completion of tasks, and inclusion of different ideas that can contribute to success in the rebranding.

Leadership as a changing culture

While all stakeholders have an imperative role in the process of changing the organizational culture, leaders play the most important role through management practices, engagement, and ensuring improved organizational performance. This is largely achieved by ensuring there are effective communication and motivation among the stakeholders influenced by the change. In this light, there is a need for followers to have confidence in their followers (Merrilees, 2017). Additionally, the leaders have to act as role models and be in support of the change being experienced in the organizational setting. In this context, leaders have an impact on the behaviors, systems, policies, and processes concerning rebranding strategies. They also contribute to ideals, goals, values, and aspirations that are embraced by the company as well as act as guides of the underlying assumptions concerning the behaviors that define the rebranded organization. Suggestively, the leaders determine what is right or wrong in the change process and set the measures for the change outcomes (Hatch & Schultz, 2003). Hence, shared leadership is imperative to the rebranding process.

The leadership style employed in the school setting has a substantial impact on the organizational culture, including the attitudes that develop among different stakeholders and the achievement made in the change process (Jung & Avolio, 1999). The two dominant theories in the education sector are instructional leadership and transformative leadership. Instructional leadership focuses on the context that effective leaders are those who focus on teacher instructions and student learning, while transformational leadership focuses on aspects of various leadership attributes and behaviors linked to organizational change (Marks & Printy, 2003). Although instructional leadership is effective in the education setting in increasing student outcomes, there is substantial advocacy for transformational leadership approaches in the implementation of change. Conversely, transformational leadership emerges as the most appropriate approach for sharing leadership roles and effective transformation of learning institutions (Robinson, Lloyd, & Rowe, 2008). This can be credited to the fact that instructional leadership lacks a uniform conceptual model that can be applied in transforming organizations. Through transformational leadership, leaders at all levels of the company can engage as agents of change to foster incremental and reliable outcomes in the transformational process.

Conceptual framework

Rebranding offers organizations the opportunity to strategically engage in the change process that can meet the customer expectations and gain competitive advantage. Insights about transformational leadership show that it offers a theoretical framework that can be adopted by leaders in educational organizations to facilitate effective management of change (Marks & Printy, 2003). This is premised on the idea that transactional leaders tend to exchange one organizational aspect from another, while the transformational leaders seek to implement the potential motives that can lead followers to identify opportunities or solutions that satisfy the needs of all stakeholders. From this perspective, transformational leadership results in strategic leadership, which influences strategic change in the organization. According to Bass (1985), transformational leadership entails articulating a compelling vision that can be pursued by all the followers. This form of leadership also motivates people by offering a vision for the future rather than compromising their commitment and engagement with rewards and punishment (Bartram & Casimir, 2007). Transformational leadership is experienced when the leaders and followers are united in their pursuit of shared higher-level goals (Sergiovanni, 2005). In this light, the following conceptual framework (figure 1) was adopted in this study:



Figure 1. Conceptual framework

Drawing from the figure above, a positive transformational leadership approach in the school setting is imperative to a rebranding of international schools by integrating an array of factors that promote the sharing of leadership in the organization. This includes strategic thinking and business orientation, which ensures that there are viable organizational objectives, a developmental orientation that guarantees focus on the change process, influence orientation that ensures all stakeholders are on board in the change process, and role modeling to guarantee that other individuals in the organization act based on the values, beliefs, and perceptions adopted by individuals in leadership. These factors are linked to the performance and positive climate for change in the organization and the different factors that lead to a positive contribution among individuals who are engaged in leadership roles. Subsequently, the integration of these factors results in increased organizational performance that leads to effective implementation of change in the rebranding process.


Research philosophy

There is an array of research philosophies that have emerged over the years in scientific research. These philosophies highlight the beliefs and assumptions made by research in different disciplines when conducting research. The major research philosophies that have been adopted in different disciplines are the positivist research philosophy and the interpretivist research philosophy. These two competing and mutually exclusive research philosophies have been used in different studies and influenced the development of other research philosophies. The interpretivist approach focuses on interpreting the elements of the research and integrating the human interests in a particular investigation (Black, 2006). Suggestively, interpretivism believes that reality is socially constructed. Drawing from these insights, the interpretivist approach was adopted in this research. In this light, the research engaged in the study as a social actor who appreciates the differences between people. This implies that the research assumes that the insights and experiences of one individual contribute to the research, and they are different from those others engaged in the study. The interpretivist approach advocates for the application of qualitative research methods that are subjectively enabling the researcher to engage with the research participants in data collection.

Research method

Premised on the interpretivist research philosophy, this research was accomplished through a qualitative research method. The qualitative research approach entails subjectively gathering data that involves interacting with the research participants and the study setting. Qualitative data focuses on the experiences of the research respondents by addressing the feelings, opinions, beliefs, and other unquantifiable aspects that emerge in the interaction between the researcher and the respondents. Unlike quantitative research that focuses on measures and other quantifiable aspects of the data, qualitative research is diverse, which offers the researchers an opportunity to explore different aspects of the issue under investigation (Thornhill, Saunders, & Lewis, 2009). For this research, a qualitative approach was important to integrate the different aspects of leadership and its influence on the change process that occurs in the rebranding of international schools. By employing this method, the investigator was able to gather comprehensive information from the research participants through the data collection method and the observations made in the research process.

Research design

The research design applied in this investigation was a case study of the French international schools in Singapore. Case studies are effective in conducting qualitative research, which requires an in-depth focus on the issues under study. Fundamentally, case studies facilitate focus on a particular case or entity in a real-life situation. This guarantees that the data collected is credible and necessary to achieve the objectives of the research. Case studies are important in qualitative research because they offer an opportunity to generalize the situation experienced in one case to other cases (Thornhill, Saunders, & Lewis, 2009). Nevertheless, this also presents a limitation of this approach, considering that no organization is similar to others. Subsequently, the use of a single case study in this study was in line with the application of qualitative research, which is credible and reliable when a single organization is addressed in the research.

Research population and sampling

This research intended to draw insights from individuals who have experience in the rebranding process of French international school in Singapore. By engaging in a case study, the researcher focused on respondents in leadership positions in French international schools in Singapore. This was important to gather insights about the sharing of leadership roles and how these individuals contribute to the change process. In this light, the key inclusion criteria were for the individuals to be in leadership positions in the particular school or marketing directors, who had the experience in the rebranding process.

Sampling was important, considering that this is a qualitative research that can be affected by data saturation due to the engagement of a large number of respondents (Thornhill, Saunders, & Lewis, 2009). Additionally, there was a need that the persons engaged in the investigation had the knowledge and will to respond to the issues under investigation. In this light, a purposeful sampling approach entails engaging individuals that can appropriately respond to the issues under investigation. Through purposeful sampling, the researcher selected three individuals in school leadership or marketing director positions that were deemed appropriate to offer appropriate insights into the investigation. The three respondents offered a large volume of data that was considered enough for developing a compressive account about the issues under investigation.

Data collection

Numerous approaches can be adopted in the gathering of qualitative data. For this research, unstructured interviews were administered to the participants. Interviews allude to a range of means employed in the collection of qualitative data through purposeful discussions between the respondents and the researcher. The unstructured interviews offered open questions that were focused on investigating different issues that contributed to the issues under research (Thornhill, Saunders, & Lewis, 2009). The open questions were focused on developing new insights that highlight the originality of the research. Additionally, the open questions offered an opportunity for further inquiry on issues that were not clear in the responses offered to the respondents. The interviews took about 45 minutes for each respondent. The data was gathered by taking shorthand notes and recording the Zoom meetings.

Data analysis

The qualitative data collected was analyzed through a thematic approach. This entailed reading and transcribing the data to make it easier to engage in the analysis. Upon familiarizing with data, the themes were identified in a strategic approach to ensure that the patterns and trends in the data were appropriately identified. The themes were developed and eventually triangulated with insights emerging from secondary data to develop a comprehensive account.

Ethical considerations

Researchers must engage in the human subject and their organizations to uphold the inherent ethical considerations in the entire research process (Thornhill, Saunders, & Lewis, 2009). In this context, the participants in this study engaged voluntarily. The researcher also sought permission to carry out the investigation from the institution where the respondents work. The respondents and the institution remain anonymous to protect their integrity and avoid repercussions that might be linked to the data they offered in this research. The information gathered was also kept under lock and key and will be discarded appropriately upon completion of this research. The respondents were also required to sign consent forms before engaging in this research.


Three interviews were conducted via Zoom, an online conferencing platform. The individuals engaged were a Principal and two communication directors. This section offers a summary of their triangulated responses to the interview. It also includes information that emerged from probing during the interview. The respondents were informed that the interview aimed to investigate the shared roles of leadership in the rebranding of international schools in Singapore. The outcomes of the research are presented in the sections below based on the themes that emerged in the qualitative data.


All respondents in the research were male, which highlights the masculine nature of leadership in the country and shows the possible impacts it might have on the leadership approaches embraced in different institutions. The participants were middle-aged between 36 and 50 years and had an average experience of 18 years in the education sector. Their current roles as principal and communications and event directors put them at the center of management in their respective institutions. This also guarantees that the participants in the study had substantial information about the undertakings of their organizations concerning change experienced during rebranding. Two of the participants were foreign with French backgrounds, while one was a local who had studied education and specialized in languages, including French, which made him appropriate for his role in a French school. All respondents had a bachelor’s degree related to education and management. They also had a background of dealing with multicultural students, which had enabled them to make the achievements they had made in engaging in the management of a multicultural education setting. One of the respondents also had experience working with students outside Singapore, which upon probing highlighted that contributed to a more informed approach in dealing with students from diverse cultural backgrounds.

Perspectives about leadership in rebranding

The respondents all worked in institutions that had a large population of students. Nevertheless, only the principle had direct responsibility for the students, while communications and events directors mandated with the management personnel and other stakeholders to achieve the set objectives in the respective institutions. All respondents were in a consensus that they engaged in various leadership development programs. These were largely achieved through leadership workshops in the house as well as with other institutions in the French international school. The meetings offered guidance on company objectives and strategic engagement of different stakeholders in development projects. As part of the management in their respective organizations, the respondents were also in a consensus on an array of roles such as engagement in setting institutional goals and setting the time required for their achievement, encouraging others to participate in the decision-making process, addressing the needs of their subordinates in a manner that ensures they engage as equals, focusing on improving the achievements of other stakeholders through a personalized approach through inspiration and intellectual situation, and intervening when required to offer others autonomy in how they engage in their specific responsibilities. The respondents acknowledged that educators were key contributors to the achievements made in projects that required the participation of students at some points. Nevertheless, there were some instances where the projects were best accomplished with only the engagement of the administration. In this light, the respondents that the participation of other stakeholders other than the individuals in the administrative team depended on the impact the projects had on different groups in the learning institutions that include the teaching staff, the support staff, parents, and students.

The participants expressed that it was imperative for the distribution of leadership in the organization to be formal. In this light, hierarchy in the organizational setting was perceived to be an important aspect of facilitating the effective flow of information and orders that ensure the organizational goals are achieved effectively. Through a formal approach, there was knowledge of the roles played by each individual in the organization, which is important for individuals in upper management when engaging in decision making. Additionally, in a formal setting, there was more efficiency. This is echoed by sentiments expressed by research participant two stating, “the trouble with schools is there are so many stakeholders and so many inputs to any one decision. So, you need to make sure you understand exactly where along that competency leadership line those decisions are being made or inputted into, so hierarchy does become critical, particularly in a school environment.” The respondents also highlighted a major concern in following the hierarchy, stating that they were more likely to ask for advice from their line managers. Additionally, they identified that in many cases, their managers were individuals older and more experienced than them, which made them appropriate to participate in a case where they lacked the necessary insights to take care of challenges at hand.  The participants also identified that the top management of schools had substantially changed, and teachers were less likely to seek advice from individuals in the communications department under normal circumstances. Nevertheless, the principal reported frequent engagements with the educators. From another perspective, the participants confirmed that there was a free flow of ideas in the organizations that guaranteed engagement with most of the stakeholders at all levels of leadership, even without following the hierarchy established in the organizational structure. Despite this, the participants stated that leadership for the teaching staff was largely limited to the classroom, and their contribution to other organizational aspects were influenced by their level of experience and seniority in the organization. The participants also stated that there were numerous opportunities for knowledge and experience advancement in the institutions that contributed to their personal development and opened up opportunities for promotion in the larger national and international organization of French schools. The respondents argued that leadership in the school setting was substantially different from the corporate sector. Subsequently, the distributed leadership notion in the school setting takes every stakeholder as a leader in the school setting. One of the respondents suggested that it was important for each individual to reflect on their role and prioritize on the contributions they have to the leadership responsibilities that facilitate the integration of efforts in meeting the organizational goals.

Leadership and rebranding

The respondents stated that they had a positive perspective in any activities that led to improvements in the organizational outcomes or an enhanced working environment. Resultantly, there was a positive attitude in the support for rebranding strategies enacted in the institutions. Fundamentally, the respondents suggested that there was substantial support for rebranding initiatives that led to the perception of the organization as an international school rather than what people often perceived it as a French school. By advocating the international dimensions, there was increased engagement with different stakeholders, and it offered an opportunity to expand the target customer base of the school in areas where it operated. The participants also state that the rebranding was achieved with intense agility after conducting research that included surveys among the people and individuals engaged in the change. This was instrumental to meet the objectives set in developing an international image for the institutions. This included influencing change that made the institutions to be perceived from the non-French perspective. Apart from the surveys, the research also included engaging in meetings, campaigns, and other teambuilding processes that involved the entire school community. In this light, the participants stated that the most critical factor to consider in the rebranding process was the feelings that emerged among the community. Taking to account these feelings was central to the resistance to change among all stakeholders. The surveys among the different stakeholders were the source of insights about the market, which streamlined the course of action taken by leaders in making appropriate decisions.



The insights emerging in this research show that there is a substantial distribution of leadership in French international schools. Additionally, each individual in the organizational setting is perceived to be a leader. The engagement of all leaders is achieved through meetings, workshops, and a formal approach that ensures the role of each individual is known. This highlights the importance of accountability in achieving organizational objectives. Bartram and Casimir (2007) allude that there is substantial collaboration and motivation among individuals who are engaged in decision-making. This is aligned to the results of this study that show distributed leadership fosters cooperation through the effective communication and the integration of processes across the organization. According to Chakravorti (2011), leadership is imperative to sustaining the organizational culture embraced by organizations. This is analogous to the idea of leadership embraced in the French International School in Singapore. The leadership has for years, maintained its values and facilitated a leadership approach that ensures these values are embraced by all stakeholders. This is fostered not only through the recruitment approach but also the ideologies held in accomplishing project objectives in the institutions. This is reflected in the engagement of many stakeholders before making decisions. Additionally, the transformational decisions are made in consensus and across the large national organization. This has ensured that the changes made in each institution are synchronized to communicate a unique and similar organizational identity across the country. This is achieved through leadership workshops and the free flow of ideas across the organization, which are presented and discussed in meetings.

The research participants implied that they had a positive attitude towards changes that led to positive changes in the organization. This included changes that led to the improved achievement of the organizational objectives and changes that enhanced the working environment. According to Chua Reyes (2015), a positive attitude among leaders influenced support of the change process among subordinates in the implementation of different organizational change programs. Drawing from the different accounts emerging in this research, the positive attitude towards rebranding was imperative in developing an international image for the French International School in Singapore. By achieving a positive brand attitude, the institutions were able to foster the marketing of the institution. This is reflected by the positive word of mouth and brand loyalty emerging from the workforce (Gilstrap & Smith, 2016). Notably, the participants in the study showed substantial attachment to the institutions they represented. They also held the notion that what makes one individual act positively can be distributed to other players and their responsibilities to the change process and the ultimate goal of the organization. Particularly, this transfer of responsibilities and motivation to act positively is reflected in the sharing of ideas and the involvement of different stakeholders in decision-making. A positive attitude towards rebranding was also evident in the trust that emerges among individuals in different leadership positions. According to Hatcher (2005) and Jung and Avolio (1999), a leadership approach that fosters trust among different stakeholders is instrumental in achieving organizational objectives. This is evident in the French international schools, whereby the participants showed trust to seek advice from those in higher positions of management and those who had more experience in the institutions in light of making appropriate decisions. This fostered a standardized approach in addressing challenges, laying out, and strategizing on the performance of the rebranding processes in the specific institutions. From this perspective, the distribution of leadership in the French international school was aligned with sentiments experienced by Larsen and Rieckhoff (2014) that show such an approach contributes to the enhancement of knowledge among the stakeholders involved, innovativeness, and support by reducing the resistance to change.

The development of a positive attitude among the individuals in strategic positions in the schools has an opportunity to contribute to the overall achievements made in the transformation of the institution. In this context, the development of a brand that portrays the organization as an international school despite being named French international school offers clear insights to the objectives on the institution that can lead on to increased enrollment of new students and support from both parents and government institutions in meeting the overall education goals across the country. The participation of an array of stakeholders in making the rebranding decisions and in driving the rebranding objectives increases transparency through good communication and effective identification of potential challenges and how they should be taken care of in the short and long run.

MacBeath (2005) and McRoy and Gibbs (2009) confirm insights presented by respondents in this research that, unlike the corporate sector, there are many stakeholders to consider when making a change in the education setting. According to the participants in this research, some changes only need the cooperation of individuals in the administrative roles, while some activities require the participation of other stakeholders that include the students, parents, and teaching staff. For the rebranding process, most of the responsibilities lie on the administrative staff. In this light, all participants in this study had an imperative role to ensure accountability in the decision making and activities upheld in the organization. Accounts from the participants show that maintaining the hierarchy of the organization was of critical importance in the engagement of all stakeholders. By following the hierarchy, there was an effective flow of knowledge, information, and ideas, as well as accountability. According to Merrilees (2017), it is important to engage individuals who have the relevant experience to guarantee effectiveness in the change process. With these considerations, the French International school ensured there was prioritization among the stakeholders to ensure that only individuals who could contribute to the necessary change were engaged. Nevertheless, the engagement of the specific leaders in the institutions also took to account that they represented the needs and opinions of other people who were subordinates in their respective fields.

In this light, the study shows that the issues faced in the rebranding process include the resistance to change, which was addressed by ensuring equitable representation in decision-making as well as the activities involved in the transfromation process. Another challenge was in developing a convincing brand that captures the values of the organization, which was accomplished by ensuring there was a diversity among the people engaged in the process and participation of individuals based on their capacity to maximize the outcome of the change process.



This research intended to investigate the shared roles of leadership in the rebranding initiatives of an international school in Singapore. The research focused on a case study of the French International schools in the country. This was achieved through an interpretivist research approach that entailed conducting a qualitative inquiry. This involved administering interviews with individuals in management positions in the school with the intent of determining their attitudes towards rebranding and the impact the process had on different stakeholders. The interviews have engaged a principle and two communication and events directors in the schools. This offered an opportunity to understand the implications the management has on the change process as well as determine the impact on other stakeholders. The study established that there was a consensus among the research participants that leadership is inherent in the achievements made in the rebranding process. In this case, the rebranding was focused on establishing the French school as an organization that offered international education. The findings establish that there were constructive attitudes towards the strategic change in the organization. This was based on the fact that changes led to an improved work environment and contributed to the achievement of the company objectives. Leadership was more effective in the organization because the responsibilities were shared. By the distribution of leadership, the management offered an opportunity for increased participation of different stakeholders, sharing of knowledge and ideas, and motivation for different individuals to contribute to the change initiatives. Nevertheless, the research highlights that it was necessary for a formal approach in the engagement of different individuals in the change process. This was important to understand the roles of each person and guarantee accountability. In this light, some activities were best accomplished with only the administrative team conducting the changes rather than engaging an array of stakeholders that included teachers, students, and parents. Teachers were important in their leadership roles when students were required to engage in the change process.

Based on the insights gathered, it is important that managers in international schools seeking to engage in rebranding establish a common ground where all stakeholders can contribute to the changes made. This includes engaging leaders in different circles as representatives of a larger population. Workshops and meetings can be utilized to communicate the changes being employed and ensuring that ideas and opinions of different people are taken to account. Also, the research shows that establishing a comprehensive communication system is important for achieving the set objectives. This can be accomplished by utilizing the available, effective, and liable internet-based technologies such as social media that are also less costly in reaching a large population of stakeholders.


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