Research Article: 2021 Vol: 24 Issue: 6
Obaid bin Abdullah Al-Subaie, Department of Educational Administration, College of Education, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Saudi
Citation Information: Al-Subaie, O.B.A. (2021). Leading organizational trust in educational institutions: A proposed leadership model. Journal of Entrepreneurship Education, 24(6).
This study aimed to present a proposed model for leading organizational trust in educational institutions, based on the importance of trust in achieving the goals of the organizations, and the importance of the leader's role in building and strengthening organizational trust. The researcher relied on the descriptive approach based on the method of analysing the literature related to the topic of organizational trust. To build an integrated model for the leadership of the trust system in educational institutions that can be guided by leaders in promoting trust behaviours within these institutions, by working according to the framework of a system geared towards strengthening organizational values that establish the concept of trust in the context of the prevailing human relations within educational institutions. The study aims to present a model for leading the trust system in educational institutions consisting of five main dimensions centred on the leader's ability to build and strengthen: (trust in himself, trust in his employees, trust of employees in themselves, the trust of employees in leadership, and trust of employees in each other), as well as the model provided a description of leader behaviour directed towards strengthening the system of trust in educational institutions in each of the five dimensions.
Organizational Trust, Leadership of Educational Institutions, Proposed Leadership Model.
The topic of organizational trust is one of the most important topics that have received great attention recently by researchers and those interested in developing organizations, especially those interested in studying organizational behavior, as a result of the rapid and successive transformations taking place in the modern era, and the accompanying orientation of organizations towards continuous change on multiple paths. In turn, prompting the necessity of transforming the forms of organizational leadership models from traditional models to modern models in which caring for the human element is the top concern, this requires building an organizational culture that promotes the appropriate organizational climate for the growth of relationships and the spread of human values among employees.
Therefore, Bou Halima et al., (2019) emphasizes that the existence of a climate of trust and participation is the basis for the success of individual and group relationships, which has become a necessity in light of the future organizations that are characterized by a high degree of human interactions, as the level of organizational trust is a basic requirement to face the challenges of adapting to the speed of change in the environment, and an important factor in determining the employees' attitude towards the change process. According to Batrancea et al., (2019), "trust moderates the role of power, namely that the effect of high power versus low power is stronger under the condition of high trust compared to a situation of low trust".
The importance of trust in institutions in general and education institutions, in particular, is emerged as it is one of the most important factors in supporting relationships between employees at all levels, and it is one of the main pillars that help organizations develop operations and achieve their goals. When an atmosphere of trust prevails in the institution, individuals can disclose their thoughts and feelings, and learn from each other. On the contrary, the lack of trust in institutions impedes communications, frustrates cooperation, and limits opportunities for knowledge sharing. (Issa, 2018). According to Salamzadeh et al., (2016), trust is one of the major competences of leadership.
Hence, organizational trust has received the attention of researchers and those interested in developing institutions in general and educational institutions in particular. Due to the large number of studies conducted in this field, the researcher will be limited to presenting the most important and recent studies directly related to the current study, which are studies that dealt with organizational trust in education institutions, with emphasis on what serves the objectives of this study and is consistent with the nature of their methodology, as follows:
1. Some studies have investigated the reality of organizational trust in educational institutions, as (Al-Qahtani & Al-Fayez, 2019) conducted a study aimed at revealing the level of organizational trust in secondary schools in Abha city and Khamis Mushait Governorate, the results of the study showed that the level of trust in school principals was moderate. Also, Al-Shetwi (2016) conducted a study aimed at identifying the degree of organizational trust from the point of view of public secondary school teachers in Riyadh. One of the most prominent results of the study was that the degree of organizational trust from the point of view of secondary school teachers was of a moderate degree. Al-Otaibi & Al-Harahsheh (2016) conducted a study aimed at identifying the level of organizational trust of school principals in the Ahmadi Governorate in Kuwait and found that the level of trust was moderate.
2. Among the studies that went beyond recognizing the reality of organizational trust to revealing the nature of the relationship between organizational trust and some other organizational variables, Al-Amiri & Salama (2020) conducted a study to identifying organizational trust and its relationship to job performance of employees of the Directorate General of human resource development at the Ministry of Education in Oman, the study found that there is a statistically significant correlation between organizational trust and employee job performance evaluation. also, Abdullah (2017) conducted a study aimed at identifying the degree of organizational culture, the degree of job involvement among faculty members and their assistants at the University of Beni Suef, and revealing the nature of the relationship between them, it revealed a high degree of trust and a high degree of job involvement. The results of the study showed a statistically significant relationship between organizational trust and job involvement. Raczynski et al., (2019) also conducted a study aimed at comparing the level of trust in schools in the "Valparaiso" region in Chile and "Illinois" state schools in the United States of America, and identifying the degree of correlation between the level of trust with the school leadership and the degree of cooperation between teachers in the relevant contexts, and identifying aspects of similarities and differences between the two contexts in the relationship of the level of trust, the size of students in schools, and their economic and social levels. The results of the study showed the role of trust in improving the level of schools, and the degree of cooperation between their employees in each of the schools, "Valparaiso Region" and "Illinois" state schools, despite the difference in the environment, culture and geography of the place, as well as the significant correlation between students' social and economic level and the level of trust between the teacher and the parent. Al-Zahrani and Sayegh, (2019) conducted a study aimed at identifying the degree of leadership in public education school leaders in Quwaiyah governorate, and the degree of organizational trust of teachers and school leaders, also to reveal the nature of the relationship between them. The study concluded that school leaders practice the dimensions of distributed leadership with a low degree, the organizational trust was at a low level as well, and that there is a statistically significant correlation between distributed leadership and organizational trust. Al-Huwaiti (2018) also conducted a study aimed at identifying the level of organizational trust in public primary schools in Tabuk and its relationship to job satisfaction among teachers. The results of the study concluded that the level of organizational trust in primary schools in Tabuk was high from the teachers’ point of view, the job satisfaction was also high, and that there was a positive correlation between the level of organizational trust and job satisfaction. Banat (2016) conducted a study aimed at identifying the level of organizational trust of primary school principals in the International Relief Agency in Gaza governorates and its relationship to the organizational climate prevailing in them, the study concluded that the level of organizational trust was significantly high, the prevailing organizational climate was very large. There is also a positive statistically significant correlation between the level of organizational trust and the quality of the organizational climate from the point of view of leaders. Al-Rashidi & Salama (2015) conducted a study aimed at revealing the degree of organizational trust in Kuwaiti universities and their relationship to the motivation of faculty members from their point of view. The study concluded that organizational trust in Kuwaiti universities was high, the degree of motivation was also high, and that there is a positive statistically significant correlation between trust in Kuwaiti universities and the motivation of faculty members. Faraj (2013) conducted a study aimed at identifying the degree of application of the heads of academic departments in the universities of Makkah Al-Mukarramah region to organizational justice and its relationship to the organizational trust of faculty members. The study concluded that the level of organizational justice and organizational trust was high and that there is a correlation between organizational justice and trust. Noah (2013) conducted a study aimed at identifying the degree of organizational trust practice among secondary school principals in Makkah and identifying the degree of teachers ’practice of organizational citizenship behavior from the point of view of principals and teachers. The study found that the degree of practicing organizational trust and organizational citizenship was high and that there was a positive correlation between them.
3. Some studies have dealt with the relationship of some organizational variables to organizational trust in educational institutions, as Saad & Abu Karim (2019) conducted a study aimed at identifying the level of administrative transparency among the heads of academic departments and its relationship to the degree of organizational trust of faculty members in private Jordanian universities from their point of view. The study concluded that the overall degree of administrative transparency was high, that the level of organizational culture was also high, and there was a positive statistically significant correlation between the degree of administrative transparency and the degree of organizational trust. Bin Talib (2018) conducted a study aimed at identifying the degree of the servant leadership's contribution to achieving the organizational trust of secondary school leaders in the governorates of Hawtat Bani Tamim and Al-Hariq from the teachers' point of view. The results of the study showed that the degree of servant leadership’s contribution to achieving organizational trust was high from the point of view of Teachers. Abdo & Al-Shurti (2015) conducted a study aimed at investigating the degree of organizational support and its relationship to the level of organizational trust in the official Jordanian universities. It concluded that the total degree of organizational support and the level of organizational trust in Jordanian universities were average and that there is a statistically significant relationship between the level of organizational support and organizational trust in Jordanian universities. Li et al., (2015) also conducted a study aimed at uncovering trust as a mediating variable in the relationship between school leadership practices and professional learning for teachers in primary schools in Hong Kong. The study concluded that the effect of teachers’ trust as a mediating variable in determining the nature of the relationship between leadership practices and the level of professional learning of teachers.
4. Some of the studies focused on the role of the leader in building and strengthening organizational trust and the factors affecting that, as Kosonen & Ikonen, (2019) conducted a study aimed at identifying how to build organizational trust at the Finnish University of Applied Sciences. The results of the study showed that discursive leadership has an important role in building trust in higher education institutions, especially in times of crisis, and trust is one of the most important elements that should receive the leadership's attention in higher education institutions. Also, Dalati et al., (2017) conducted a study to reveal the effect of the leader’s trust and knowledge exchange on employee satisfaction in Syrian universities. The study concluded that trust in the leader, behaviors, and knowledge sharing is positively related to employee job satisfaction. Also, Kwan (2015) conducted a study aimed at revealing the effect of trust as a mediating variable on the relationship between educational leadership and transformational leadership on the performance of students in secondary schools in Hong Kong. The results of the study indicated a weak relationship between educational leadership practices and students’ performance in schools with a low trust level, the study emphasized the necessity of reconsidering the role of transformational leadership in improving students' performance by enhancing trust in the educational environment. Northfield (2014) conducted a study aimed to reveal the role of new leaders in building trust with employees during the first phase of their school leadership in the province of "Nova Scotia" In Canada, the results of the study showed that trust leadership is done through friendship, credibility and professional reputation of the leader, a process that requires continuous effort and time, in addition to employing the leadership skills such as interaction and communication skills to instill trust in his followers also, by carrying out his roles and responsibilities with the highest degree of competence. The study of Browning (2014) aimed to reveal the transformational leader's role in building trust between him and those working in educational institutions and heads of school boards in Australia, the results of the study showed a strong relationship between transformational leadership and trust, as the results confirmed the relevance of the transformational leader's attitude to enhancing the level of trust. Zeinabadi & Rastegarpour (2010) conducted a study aimed at identifying the factors that affect teachers' trust in school leadership through revealing the effect of the transformational leadership variables and procedural justice on teachers’ trust in Tehran schools, the results of the study showed that transformational leadership has a direct and indirect effect on trust in school leadership. The results also confirmed that procedural justice has a partial effect as a mediating variable on the relationship between transformational leadership and teachers’ trust in leaders. Sendjaya & Pekerti (2010) also conducted a study in America aimed to examine the effect of servant leadership on subordinate's trust in their leaders, in two educational institutions, where measures of servant leadership behavior and subordinate trust in their leader were applied. The study found that servant leadership is an important indicator of trust, as servant leadership behaviors contribute significantly to subordinate trust in their leaders, and subordinates who observed higher servant leadership behavior in their leaders had significantly higher trust levels compared to those who observed low servant leadership behavior in their leaders.
From the previous presentation of the studies that dealt with organizational trust in educational institutions, it is evident that the researchers agree on the importance of organizational trust, as some studies have moved towards verifying its availability in educational institutions based on their importance, while this importance has emerged through the direction of many studies to reveal the nature of the relationship between Organizational trust and some other organizational variables, as studies have confirmed a positive relationship between organizational trust and many important organizational variables, which confirms the importance of improving and enhancing organizational trust in educational institutions. As evidenced by previous studies, the role of leadership in building and strengthening organizational trust in educational institutions has been confirmed, noting the scarcity of Arab studies that have dealt with this topic. It is also noted from the review of previous studies that it is limited to dealing with organizational trust in the field of trust of employees in the leader or the leader’s trust in employees or trust among employees, while previous studies did not address the dimension of self-trust at the level of leaders and subordinates, which represents - from the viewpoint of the researcher - the real basis for improving the level of trust in all dimensions of human relations prevailing in educational institutions, and it was not directed to study the role of leaders in strengthening these relationships, this is the difference of this study from previous studies, as this study differed in its approach regarding the issue of organizational trust, as previous studies relied on the descriptive approach, in its two types of survey and correlation, to study the reality of organizational trust and its relationship to other organizational variables. While the current study relied on the method of analyzing the phenomenon by tracking the development of its concept and analyzing the reality of its application in light of previous theoretical literature, leading to the presentation of a new model contributing to improving the level of trust leadership in educational institutions. What distinguishes the current study from previous studies as well is that it deals with Organizational trust from a comprehensive integrated perspective of the nature of relations prevailing in educational institutions through five dimensions that constitute the system of trust in these institutions.
This study benefited from previous studies in dealing with the concepts related to organizational trust, and its extents in educational institutions, which helped the researcher build the proposed leadership model for leading the trust system in educational institutions.
Based on the foregoing, the researcher believes that it’s time to go beyond the research on the importance of organizational trust, and its relationship to organizational variables, to search for means by which educational institutions can contribute to improving the level of organizational trust, by strengthening the role of leaders in building organizational trust. The challenge facing organizational trust and limiting its popularity in our educational institutions is the absence of a model that can guide leaders in promoting trust behaviors within these institutions, which the study seeks to highlight by presenting an integrated system of organizational trust, leaders' efforts can be directed towards strengthening it.
The prevalence of the concepts of trust and their adoption in educational institutions can only be achieved through a leadership model that works according to a system directed towards strengthening organizational values that establish the concept of trust in the context of the prevailing human relations within Educational institutions.
According to Salamzadeh (2020), the theoretical contribution of this study stems from the following considerations. First, this study examines new relationships among different dimensions. Second, it proposes a new model for leading the trust system in educational institutions.
The article first clarifies the problem of the study and depicts the research questions and the importance of the study. The author then describes the methodological design and the theoretical framework of the study. Finally, the author concludes the article with a discussion of the proposed model for leading the trust system in educational institutions and the theoretical and practical implications of the study.
Based on the great importance of the topic of trust, represented by the literature and studies confirming it as basic input and an important factor in improving the level of performance of organizations in general, and education organizations in particular, and based on the importance of the human element and the role of leaders in improving the performance of institutions in all Tracks, it can be said that the effectiveness of organizational trust in educational institutions will only be achieved through building a leadership model that leaders can start from to practice their roles in leading and strengthening the trust system in these institutions.
In light of the need for our educational institutions to enhance the concepts and practices related to the value of the trust at all levels, which was revealed studies such as (Al-Zahrani & Sayegh, 2019; Al-Qahtani & Al-Fayez, 2019; Al-Shetwi, 2016; Al-Otaibi & Al-Harahsheh, 2016) and given the absence of a scientific theory or direction in leadership - to the best of the researcher's knowledge - that deals with the issue of trust at all levels of relationships within the organization, thus the need for a study that deals with this issue will present a model that contributes to improving the level of trust leadership within educational institutions is confirmed. Presenting the trust model leadership in educational institutions will help in developing the organizational behavior of both leaders and employees in these institutions, where trust is one of the most important factors related to the success or failure of educational institutions to achieve their goals.
1. What is meant by organizational trust? How did the concept of organizational trust develop in contemporary managerial thought?
2. What is the importance of organizational trust? What is the relationship between organizational trust and Leadership in Educational Institutions?
3. What is the proposed model for leading the trust system in educational institutions?
1. To learn about the concept of organizational trust, and its development in light of contemporary management thought.
2. To recognize the importance of organizational trust and its relationship to leadership in educational institutions in light of theories explaining the role of leaders in enhancing organizational trust.
3. To propose a model to lead the trust system in educational institutions.
The study is important because it provides a model for leading the trust system in educational institutions, and it is expected that it will contribute to the following:
1. Improving the skills of leaders by strengthening the trust system in educational institutions, through their ability to enhance the dimensions of trust on all paths of relations within educational institutions.
2. Improving the level of satisfaction of both leaders and those working with them, and the consequent improvement in the level of practices, leading the educational institutions towards quality and excellence.
3. Developing the organizational behavior of both leaders and employees in these institutions, where trust is one of the most important factors related to the success or failure of educational organizations in achieving their mission.
4. Promoting the organizational culture based on the value of trust, and the organizational values that contribute to the formation of a positive organizational climate within educational institutions.
Leading the Trust System: In this study, the leadership of the trust system means the leader's ability to influence those working with him, by building and strengthening the value of trust as a basis for all concepts that govern the practices of both the individual and the group, and nature of relations within educational institutions are determined by it.
Leadership Model: The leadership model in this study means the framework in which the behavior of the leader directed towards building and strengthening the trust system within educational institutions is determined according to the following five dimensions: (The leader's self-trust, the trust of the leader in the employees, the trust of employees in themselves, and the trust of employees in leadership, and the employees trust in each other), which the researcher called the trust quintet.
The study is limited to dealing with the issue of trust in educational institutions, at the level of human relations in the light of which the behavior of each of the leaders and followers forms within the framework of the trust system that is determined in the following dimensions: (The leader's self-trust, the trust of the leader in his employees, the trust of employees in themselves, and the trust of employees in leadership, and the employees trust in each other).
The Theoretical Framework of the Study
The First Topic: Organizational Trust in Contemporary Management Thought
Before discussing the concept of trust, the issue of trust must be addressed in terms of its emergence, as the logic indicates and the literature confirms that the emergence of trust was linked to the development of societies, as it is as old as the first forms of human bonds. As for trust at the level of organizations, (Mahmoud et al., 2018; Abu Shawish, 2013; Banat, 2016) agree that the scientific interest in organizational trust appeared at the beginning of the fifties of the last century as a major topic in psychology, also (Erikson) indicated that individuals differ in their tendencies to trust others. Concepts of trust also emerged in sociology at the beginning of the sixties when (Goffman, 1963) who has pointed to the essential role of trust in maintaining social processes.
The first ideas related to the concept of trust within organizational contexts were presented by (Luhman, 1979) who emphasized the importance of trust within organizational relationships, and during the seventies, the concept and role of trust emerged within organizational contexts, when there was increased interest in the participation of employees within the idea of democracy as an essential step to improve the quality of work, where it helps to achieve administrative coordination. The concept of trust witnessed a remarkable development with the development of managerial and organizational thought, as the traditional school focused on the formal aspects of the prevailing organizational relations (authority, division of labor, the scope of supervision) which limited the development of trust within the organization. while the humanitarian school focused on informal aspects and paid Special attention to cooperative activity between individuals and considered it the essential element in achieving goals, thus the concept of organizational trust emerged during that stage.
In light of what has been presented about the emergence of the concept of trust, it is noted that its concept in organizations is related to the ideas of the school of human relations that paved the way for the emergence of the behavioral approach in contemporary management thought, and the modern theories and trends that followed that concerned with studying the organizational behavior description, and accordingly this study will depend on this concept to deal with the topic of trust leadership in educational institutions.
Concept of Organizational Trust
The definitions provided by the researchers for trust notes that there is difficulty in reaching a specific definition for trust, and perhaps this difficulty is a result of the overlapping structure of this concept, its multiplicity of uses, levels, and types. The researchers also differed in their approach to the concept of trust as a result of their different fields and scientific specializations, as was the case in researchers have addressed the concept of organizational trust. The following are some of these definitions:
Trust is defined as an unwritten psychological and emotional contract between two parties, which is adhered to behaviorally and procedurally, so that it represents the main criterion in judging the actions of the two parties, and evaluating the quality and nature of the relationship between them, and results in mutual trust between the two parties (Atris, 2016).
Trust is defined according to the Oxford Dictionary (Oxford) as the positive feeling that a party has towards the other party in terms of performing the agreed actions.
As for trust at the organization level, the researchers' focus has shifted to explaining the concept of organizational trust as representing the degree of individual faith and acceptance of the decisions and policies set by the organization’s management, which it implements and administers fairly for all parties (Al-Jundi, 2016).
Organizational trust is defined as employees' belief in organizational leadership, and the belief that organizational procedures will benefit both employees and the organization alike, and it is closely related to job satisfaction, organizational commitment, clarity of role, and good performance (Jill & Theresa, 2015).
Organizational trust is also defined as the positive expectations, beliefs, and feelings that individuals carry towards the organization to which they belong, and related to the applied administrative practices and behaviors, in which adherence to public and administrative private moral values, and keeping away from everything that harms public interests, is taken into consideration. (Al-Nuwaiqa, 2013). From the previous definitions, it is noticed that some of the researchers see that trust represents a psychological trend related to the characteristics of people, their expectations, and there are those who see that it represents a social trend related to the nature of relationships, principles and values that govern relationships between individuals, and there are those who see it as a behavioral trend related to the ability to choice and decision-making, and in light of this, it can be emphasized that organizational trust is an interconnected concept that is integrated into many approaches associated with psychology and sociology and organizational behavior, and accordingly, the researcher went beyond the complexity of the concept of organizational trust and its limitations to present a simplified model in the light of which the nature of trust relationships within the institutional organization can be understood and the behavior of leaders can be directed towards building and strengthening them.
Dimensions of Organizational Trust
Researchers' classifications of the dimensions of organizational trust in educational institutions varied, and the reason for this may be due to the nature of the objectives through which the researchers addressed organizational trust. (Ahmed, 2014) classified the dimensions of trust into systems and leadership, relationships, concern for employees, concern for work, and employee empowerment. Several researchers such as (Banat, 2016; Al-Otaibi, 2019; Al-Qahtani & Al-Fayez, 2019; Bou Halima et al., 2019) have classified the dimensions of trust into trust in administrative policies, trust in innovation and self-fulfillment, and trust in prevailing values, and trust in the flow of information. (Al-Amiri & Salama, 2020) added the trust in employees. Also, a group of researchers such as (Al-Rashidi & Salama, 2015; Atris, 2016; Al-Shetwi, 2016; Al-Khafifi, 2017; Amer, 2018; Bin Talib, 2018) have tended to classify the dimensions of trust into Trust in senior management, trust in the direct superior, and the trust in colleagues with a difference in some formulas among researchers, and (Al-Huwaiti, 2018) added on the three previous dimensions, the trust in the work environment and organizational decisions, as well as (Al-Rashdi & Abdul-Hadi, 2019) added the dimension of trust in the availability of information.
In light of the foregoing, it is noticed that most researchers have classified the dimensions of organizational trust into three dimensions: (trust in colleagues, trust in direct superior, and trust in senior management) and this classification is considered one of the most famous and most common classifications, the following is a presentation of the most prominent trust indicators related to each of these dimensions, as reported by (Abdullah, 2017):
1. Trust in colleagues, and is reflected in the following indicators:
• The employee feels that his colleagues are keen on his interest, and are ready to sacrifice for him.
• Not feeling embarrassed when asking for help from colleagues.
• Mutual trust between colleagues, and dealing with transparency.
• Exchange of information between colleagues
2. Trust in the direct superior, and is reflected in the following indicators:
• The direct superior enjoys skill and morals and is informed of all the details of his work.
• The direct superior dealt with employees' problems as if they were his own.
• The direct superior’s interest in the personal and functional needs of the employees, and his interaction with them.
• The direct superior was keen to reinforce points of agreement and distance from points of disagreement.
• The direct superior enjoys being accepted by the employees.
• The direct superior’s concern for the happiness of employees and raising their morale.
• The direct superior was keen to achieve fairness in dealing with employees.
• The direct superior’s inclination to forgive employees.
3. Trust in senior management, which is reflected in the following indicators:
• Taking care of the interests of employees, and taking into account their rights and needs when making decisions.
• Achieving justice among employees, and applying regulations and laws to everyone.
• Providing assistance to all employees.
• Appreciating the employees' efforts and their new ideas.
• Striving to expand the circle of communication with employees, and to know the details of work.
Through the previous presentation of the dimensions of organizational trust according to the most famous classifications, the researcher believes that this classification can be used in determining the dimensions of the proposed leadership model for leading the trust system in educational institutions, by focusing on the first and second dimensions because of their connection to the network of human relations within the educational institution, in addition to the dimensions that will be included in the proposed leadership model, and whose effectiveness depends on the effectiveness of the behavior of those who lead these institutions.
Organizational Trust Models
There is a set of organizational trust models presented by thinkers and researchers in this field, such as the mentioned in (Ahmed, 2014):
1. The trust spiral model: It is a model presented by (Zands, 1996) to enhance mutual trust between the two parties, in which trust develops through a mutual circular process to strengthen relations, and it starts from the expectations of one of the parties about the behavior of the other and then progresses according to a spiral movement up and down depending on certain drivers of trust such as (revealing information, sharing influence, or exercising control).
2. The Integrative Trust Model: It is a model presented by (Mayer. Davis & Shoorman) to describe trust and how it is formed between individuals (trustee and trustor) and that the level of trust and the level of perceived risk in a particular situation will lead to the risk in the relationship between the two parties.
3. Trustworthy behavior model: It is a model presented by (Whitener, Brodit, Korsgarad & Warner's, 1998) to describe administrative procedures that represent the basis of trust. The administrative activities represent the basis of trust, the manager is primarily responsible for initiating the formation of trust relationships, where the model was based on the interpretation of administrative trust relations and the theory of social exchange that describes the social exchange and social relations between two parties to form the trust.
Toway also presented a model of trust consisting of three elements: (the ability to trust, the ability to recognize competencies, and the ability to recognize intentions) (Al-Ghanim, 2018). The researcher benefited from these models in building the model that resulted from the present study, as the proposed model combines the previous models regarding the integration and interaction between the proposed model’s elements, in addition to focusing in the new model on the pivotal role that the leader plays to lead the trust system in the educational institutions.
Types of Organizational Trust
After reviewing the theoretical literature about the classifications of types of organizational trust, it is observed that researchers have differed in their classifications due to the different perspectives through which they view trust. After reviewing several classifications, Al-Shetwi (2016) reached a classification that represents a common denominator among all classifications as the following:
1. Personal trust, divided into two parts:
A. Vertical trust, which is the superior's trust in the subordinate, or vice versa.
B. horizontal, which is the trust towards co-employees. personal trust includes: (exposed trust, friendship-based trust, competence-based trust, and contractual trust).
2. Institutional trust, which is trust in the organization to which the subordinate belongs. Institutional trust includes: (vertical trust, contract-based trust, competence-based trust, and professional trust). The relationship between the types of organizational trust is reciprocal and complementary, as it is difficult to separate them, as each type affects the other, whether the effect is negative or positive.
Organizational Trust Rule
Researchers in the field of developing organizational trust agree that there is a set of rules that organizations must observe as requirements to achieve an advanced level of trust, the most important of these rules as mentioned by (Al-Qahtani & Al-Fayez, 2019; Amer, 2018; Banat, 2016; Abu Shawish, 2013) are as follows:
1. Not to over-trust others: It is not wise to trust people whom we do not know, their behavior has not been observed for enough time, and there are no common goals with them.
2. Trust requires identification in institutions: trust in the ability of employees and their commitment to achieving goals requires that the organization work on redesigning processes and tasks in proportion to the nature of employees, this contributes to enhancing mutual trust between them, and focusing on evaluating results more than monitoring the task.
3. Trust requires the ability to learn and adapt as the consecutive circumstances and changes require that the institution can make a change, strengthening the ability of groups and individuals to adapt to these variables.
4. Trust requires firmness: institutions must take care of choosing employees who can think and regenerate, and coexist with expectations, and when employees prove inability to achieve the aspirations of the institution, it must abandon them and search for others.
5. Trust requires organizational integration: Trust needs organizational integration as there are groups within the organization that can be trusted to find solutions to the problems facing the organization, especially at the level of relations between its employees.
6. Trust requires communication: Personal communication is an important requirement to enhance trust between leaders and employees, and between employees and their co-employees in the organization, so the organization should be keen to hold more personal meetings to enhance the goals and develop business strategies.
7. Trust requires a multiplicity of leaders: the multiplicity of leaders represents an important starting point for managing independent units in trust-based institutions, and this is achieved through the leaders' ability to practice methods of participation empowerment and distribution of leadership.
Based on these rules, the researcher believes that leadership is the main factor in establishing and maintaining these rules. Therefore, the efforts and behavior of leaders in educational institutions must be directed towards paying attention to what contributes to the achievement of these rules and to beware of everything that leads to breaking these rules, because this will undermine efforts to build and maintain organizational trust.
The Second Topic: The Importance of Organizational Trust and Its Relationship to Leadership in Educational Institutions (The Importance of Organizational Trust in Educational Institutions)
The importance of organizational trust is highlighted in studies confirming the positive relationship between organizational trust and many organizational variables, such as organizational creativity, performance, job satisfaction, organizational citizenship behaviors, and organizational loyalty. On the other hand, studies also confirm the existence of a relationship between the absence of organizational trust and some other organizational variables, such as job burnout, work turnover, and organizational conflict (Abdullah, 2017), and this is what emerged from the presentation of previous studies that dealt with the relationship between organizational trust and several variables at the level of educational institutions.
Coleman (2012) also emphasizes the importance of organizational trust in improving efficiency through the growth and support of informal personal relationships that support formal relationships within institutions. Also, trust has many roots associated with strengthening communication and supporting large-scale dialogue, cooperation, and exchange of information, creating change, and reducing misunderstanding.
Trust is also one of the basic foundations on which social capital is based, as its importance in educational institutions is evidenced by increasing trust between individuals, the presence of common values and goals, and the formation of positive relationships that contribute to experiences exchange, improving the efficiency of teamwork and enhancing the ability to solve problems (Hawala & Al-Shorbaji, 2014).
At the level of educational institutions, the importance of trust is evident through its impact on improving human relations, which is one of the necessary factors, as it works to increase the effectiveness of relations between members of educational institutions, as well as contributes to enhancing freedom of expression and unlocking their potential energies, and employing them voluntarily in the service of the educational institution (Rostami et al., 2015). Hence the importance of trust between educational leadership and teachers is one of the essential features of high-performance educational institutions (Tonissen, 2015).
For the educational institution to be able to improve its performance and to achieve high and distinct productivity, it must work to achieve integration between its employees, especially concerning their roles, and this integration will not be achieved unless the trust is achieved in the light of which the existing work proceeds with mutual trust between employees so that everyone trusts a person in the organization in that the other individual performs his role perfectly (Al-Ghanim, 2018).
Studies of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development have shown that high-performing countries focus on creating cooperation and trust between teachers, which leads to more skilled education and strong student achievement. American researchers have also found that academic achievement is much stronger when teachers work in collaborative and confident teams (Darling-Hammond, 2014).
In light of the advanced presentation of the importance of organizational trust, it can be said that educational institutions are among the most in need of organizational trust, as they are primarily human institutions. Their input is human and their operations depend on humans, as well as their output is human, which confirms the importance of improving the nature of relations within institutions and establishing the principle of trust at all levels.
Trust and Organizational Culture in Educational Institutions
Organizational trust is one of the most important elements affecting the formation of organizational culture, like many beliefs, values, trends, and positive feelings that the individual carries towards the organization in which he works, and towards colleagues and principals are formed, and these beliefs, values , and trends are always related to the behavior and practices of the leaders of the organization, in which the commitment to moral values must be taken into account (Al-Ghanim, 2018). Leaders who exhibit moral behaviors, are more prone to be more innovative in their work (Goodarzi et al., 2018).
Trust is one of the most important features of a strong culture in educational institutions, as it represents an important factor in building a cooperative and positive educational culture, for the school leader to create a successful organizational environment, he must build trust between him and the teachers, as it leads to improving relations between them to ensure cooperation and interaction, and also encourages teachers to take risks and work longer hours, and establish an attractive environment in which everyone looks to come to work, based on trust and cooperation, which is one of the main pillars that enable institutions to achieve excellence, and this, in turn, leads to creating attractive learning opportunities for students (Modoono, 2017).
Hence (Brown, 2018) believes that trust is the most important element in building relationships and improving learning. Once you include trust in the school’s culture, you can have more powerful conversations to help everyone grow and improve. The purpose of schools is to develop a place where students are provided with high levels of learning, to achieve this, we must establish meaningful relationships based on trust, trust is security, trust is comfort, trust is the feeling that someone supports you, and trust is an environment in which individuals can do their best.
From the above, it is clear that trust is the most important value that the institutions' efforts should be directed towards strengthening it to build an effective organizational culture through which the level of organizational behavior can be improved in order to bring it to success and excellence, where the trust system in institutions is formed in light of the organizational culture directed towards strengthening organizational values as the source and end of all organizational values in this field.
The Relationship Between Organizational Trust and Leadership in Educational Institutions
The issue of the correlation of the level of development and progress of institutions with the development of the level of leadership is no longer a matter for discussion, as the literature that deals with the topic of organizational development agree on the importance of the role of leadership, the basic function of the leader within the organization focuses mainly on strengthening unity and achieving cohesion and trust, through the ability to influence followers and motivate them towards achieving goals. Trust and leadership are two related concepts, as trust is one of the most important features that leaders should have self-trust and trust in others.
In order to clarify the nature of the relationship between leadership and trust, the author will review the most important theories in light of which this relationship can be explained:
First: Behavioral Theory
In light of the emergence of the human relations movement, researchers’ interest has been shifted towards studying leadership behavior based on the assumption that the leader’s behavior has a direct effect on the workgroup. What is known as the behavioral school of leadership emerged, and by analyzing what was included in the theoretical literature related to the behavioral school, the most prominent theories that dealt with the issue of trust in this school can be presented as follows:
A. Likert theory that deals with trust in terms of the leader's level of trust in subordinates according to the nature of the leadership style, which he divided into three types:
1. The exploitative authoritative system (does not trust a subordinate).
2. The benevolent-authoritative (the trust of the master in his servant).
3. The consultative system (great but not complete trust and still wants to control decisions).
4. Democratic system (full trust in subordinates in all matters).
B. The managerial network theory developed by Blake Robert and Mouton Jane, in which the leadership styles were divided into five styles, the best of which was the ideal leader who cares about achievement through committed individuals, and the interaction and interdependence between individuals leading to trust and respect.
Second: The Attitude Theory
It affirms that the most effective way to lead depends on the nature of the situation, and among the most prominent theories that dealt with the issue of trust in this area are the following:
1. The situational theory of Fiedler, where he developed a model in leadership based on the suitability of the situation to the leadership style, in which the relationship between the leader and the subordinates where the subordinates' acceptance of the leader appears is one of the most important situational factors that are stipulated for this model because that indicates the extent of availability trust between superiors and subordinates.
2. The Path-Goal theory developed by House Robert, where this theory is based on the expectancy theory of motivation. This theory identifies four models of leadership behavior that can all be used by the leader (Directive behavior, Supportive behavior, Participative behavior and the achievement-oriented behavior), Where the leader shows high trust in his subordinates in achieving these goals.
The concept of trust and its relationship to leadership also emerged in a group of theories that represented the new approach to human relations, the most prominent of which are: Douglas Mcgregor's theory X-theory-Y, and Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs theory - and William Ouchi's Japanese Z theory.
As for the level and approaches and modern trends in contemporary management and leadership thought, the topic of trust has received increased interest. The researcher noticed from tracing the most famous trends in the modern models of management and leadership their great focus on the issue of trust, as this has appeared in several recent trends in management, including Knowledge management, management empowerment, and management with love. The issue of trust has also emerged as a fundamental factor in many leadership models, including (transformational leadership, distributed leadership, servant leadership, and ethical leadership).
Through the previous presentation of the most important theories through which the relationship between leadership and trust in institutions can be explained, it becomes clear how much the shift towards organizational trust is a basic value around which modern models are centered in the leadership of educational institutions, where trust represents the essence of organizational behavior in which the behavior of both leaders and followers is shaped and the organizational values that should prevail in educational institutions have emerged. Hence the current study relies on the behavioral theory emanating from the approach to human relations in developing a model for leading the trust system in educational institutions.
Therefore (Al-Ghanim, 2018) and many researchers emphasize that trust is a key feature associated with leaders, which is reinforced by honesty and integrity as an inevitable and essential feature of leadership. When individuals trust the leader, they love to work with him and respond to his command, and that is their trust that their rights and interests will be of interest, thus the leadership is primarily responsible for building trust in the organization.
The Professional Standards for School Leadership in the United States of America (2015) emphasized the role of school leadership in building trust between the leadership and teachers and administrators to enhance professional capabilities and improve practices (Seventh Standard)
Accordingly, the importance of leaders ’direction to build and develop trust in educational institutions is emphasized by practicing new methods that go beyond showing trustworthy behavior to providing an organizational climate that enhances and supports trust and helps spread its culture within the institution. Among of the most important methods that leaders can follow to build and strengthen trust in educational institutions as mentioned by (Banat, 2016; Al-Otaibi, 2019; Mahmoud et al., 2018) are the following:
1. Maintaining promises and fulfilling them.
2. Ensuring honesty
3. Maintaining consistency between words and actions
4. Expressing feelings honestly
5. Flexibility in dealing with others
6. Ensuring listening to others
7. Practicing open communication
8. Consistency principle
9. Demonstrating a passion for work
10. Committing to transparency.
Looking at the previous methods, it is noticed that they focused on trust between the leader and the subordinates, but there is another dimension that is no less important than this dimension, which is the leader's self-trust, which is one of the most important features of a balanced and strong personality and is the most important source for the leader's ability to lead trust in educational institutions.
Hence, the success of educational institutions in achieving high levels of performance is closely related to the level of organizational trust prevailing in the educational institutions, where the performance of employees and their level of productivity is linked to the level of prevailing organizational trust, which in turn depends on the ability of the leadership of these institutions to practice their roles in building and strengthening trust in educational institutions, this was evidenced by the previous studies presented by (Kosonen & Ikonen, 2019; Dalati et al., 2017; Kwan, 2015; Li, et al., 2015; Northfield, 2014; Browning, 2014; Zeinabadi & Rastegarpour, 2010).
In light of the previous presentation, it can be said that there is a failure in the literature to deal with the issue of trust at all levels of relationships within the institutional organization, as dealing with the issue of trust was limited to the partial treatment, represented by the implicit or explicit reference to this topic as a dimension, requirement, or result of a theory or trend that aims to improve the level of leadership practice in organizations, which confirms the need for a comprehensive leadership model through which the role of leaders can be developed in the field of organizational trust in educational institutions.
The Third Topic: The Proposed Model for Leading the Trust System In Educational Institutions
The General Objective of The Proposed Model
To provide an intellectual framework to improve the role of leaders in building and strengthening the organizational trust system in educational institutions, by improving the level of their practices in the field of building and strengthening trust at the level of the leader and the level of human relations within these institutions.
Detailed Objectives of The Proposed Leadership Model
1. Improving the level of self-trust of leaders of educational institutions.
2. Improving the level of trust of educational institution leaders in the employees.
3. Improving the level of trust of employees in educational institutions in their leadership.
4. Improving the level of self- trust of employees in educational institutions.
5. Improving the level of trust of employees in educational institutions with each other.
The Intellectual Premises of the Proposed Leadership Model
The proposed model for leading the trust system in educational institutions takes the following starting points:
1. Emphasizing the importance of the human element, as it represents the real capital that educational institutions should focus on taking care of.
2. Emphasizing the importance of human relations as an entry point for improving the level of performance of employees in educational institutions as social institutions whose level of performance depends on the progress in strengthening relations between its members at all levels.
3. Emphasize the importance of leadership in influencing employees and the ability to build and enhance organizational trust that contributes to creating an organizational climate that leads employees in educational institutions towards quality and excellence.
4. Emphasizing of modern leadership theories and trends the strong relationship between leadership and organizational trust, as studies confirm the strong relationship between trust and transformational leadership, distributed leadership, servant leadership, ethical leadership, and other recent trends in the leadership of educational institutions.
5. Emphasizing the importance of organizational trust in developing the performance of educational institutions, as studies confirm that there is a strong relationship between the level of organizational trust and several other organizational variables such as performance and job satisfaction, organizational climate, organizational creativity, organizational citizenship behaviors, and organizational loyalty.
Dimensions of the Proposed Leadership Model
The proposed model for leading the trust system in educational institutions consists of five dimensions, as shown in the following Figure 1.
Figure 1 The Model of Leadership of the Trust System in Educational Institutions (Leading With Trust Quintet).
It is clear from the previous model, which represents the form of the proposed model for leading the trust system in educational institutions, that it consists of five main elements that represent the dimensions of the trust system. It is also clear that the nature of the relationship between these dimensions is an interaction and complementarity relationship, and that the source of the influence around which all dimensions are centered is the behavior of the leader, the following is a presentation of the dimensions of the proposed model:
1. The leader's self-trust. (It is the basis of leadership, hence without trust, there is no leadership).
2. The leader's trust in the employees. (It is the starting point for employees' excellence and creativity).
3. The trust of employees in the leader. (It is the motivating force towards performing tasks).
4. The self-trust of the employees. (It is the source of efficiently performing tasks).
5. The trust of employees in each other. (It is the focus of the positive organizational climate).
Requirements for The Leadership of The Trust System in Educational Institutions
First: The requirements related to the leader's self-trust, which means the leader's ability to enhance and maintain his trust in himself, and among the most important of these requirements are the following:
1. Sense of honesty and sincerity in performing work.
2. Ambition and optimism that tomorrow will be better than today.
3. Clarity of vision, and the goal that the leader seeks to reach.
4. Reflection on oneself and assessing the strengths and weaknesses points and dealing with them positively.
5. Dealing with weaknesses as challenges that can be addressed and overcome, leading to distinction.
6. Avoiding fear of failure, and considering previous experiences as opportunities for learning and growth.
7. Accepting criticism and being open to others, and considering this as an entry point to improve practice.
8. Acknowledge mistakes and learn from them.
9. Adopting new and varied strategies in performing the tasks.
10. Changing behaviors in line with human nature.
11. Working on developing the level of knowledge, skills, and abilities in his field of work.
12. Working on building positive relationships based on gaining the respect of others and gaining their appreciation.
Second: Requirements related to the leader's trust in employees, and they mean the leader's ability to enhance and maintain his trust in employees, and among the most important of these requirements are the following:
1. Good thinking, and starting from positive perceptions and impressions about others.
2. Focusing on results rather than performing tasks.
3. Taking into account the compatibility between employees' tasks and their capabilities.
4. Taking into account the individual differences between employees, when assigning tasks to them.
5. Working to achieve compatibility between the goals of the employees and the goals of the educational institution.
6. Accepting employees’ mistakes and dealing with them wisely.
7. Involving employees in making decisions related to the educational institution.
8. Ensuring the development of employees' performance and improving their professional growth.
Third: The requirements related to the trust of employees in the leader, and they mean the leader's ability to promote employees, and the most important of these requirements are the following:
1. Humility and good manners.
2. Integrity stemming from credibility in speech and action.
3. Appreciating the employees ’feelings, and interacting with them.
4. Preserving employee secrets.
5. Helping employees discover their potential.
6. Making employees feel fairness, whether at the level of tasks or incentives and rewards.
7. Openness to employees, and strengthening of communication channels between the leader and employees.
8. Paying attention to the personal and employment needs of employees, and working to satisfy them as much as possible.
9. Defending employees and preserving their rights.
10. Taking care of the happiness of employees and raising their morale.
11. Paying attention to improving the level of job security for employees.
Fourth: The requirements related to the self-trust of employees, and they mean the leader's ability to enhance and maintain the employees’ self-trust, and among the most important of these requirements are the following:
1. Praising the employees and encourage them to do more.
2. Making employees feel the importance of the role they play.
3. Respecting employees and appreciating them.
4. Allowing employees to correct mistakes, and consider them as an entry point for improvement.
5. Granting employees more freedom to choose the methods they deem appropriate to perform their tasks.
6. Enabling employees to take decisions related to the work assigned to them.
7. Recognition and appreciation of the achievements of employees.
8. Create situations in which employees feel the challenge, and work to help them overcome them.
Fifth: The requirements related to the employees’ trust in each other, and the most important of these requirements are the following:
1. Encouraging cooperation and promoting teamwork.
2. Enhancing the principle of clarity and transparency among employees
3. Emphasizing the importance of frankness and disclosure between employees.
4. Maintaining mutual respect among all employees.
5. Ensuring that labor problems are contained, direct intervention to solve them.
6. Enhancing communication channels between employees, and creating an appropriate environment for that.
7. Taking care of the informal organization, and employing it in strengthening the formal organization.
8. Encouraging the organization of informal meetings between employees.
9. Supporting social communication initiatives between employees and their participation.
10. Creating opportunities through which altruistic values can be promoted among employees.
11. Promote the principle of mutual dependence between employees, and encourage them to exchange ideas and information with each other.
12. Creating an organizational climate in which employees feel brotherhood and familiarity.
13. Enhancing the value of belonging to the educational institution, and advancing the public interest over personal interest.
In light of the presentation of the dimensions that make up the proposed model for the leadership of the trust system in educational institutions, it is clear that there are a set of characteristics that the leaders of trust in educational institutions must have, in addition to that the model is based on a set of organizational values in the light of which the organizational culture should be formed in the educational institutions.
In conclusion, this study has a number of implications for future research. The author suggested that further mixed and quantitative studies on organizational trust could be conducted to examine the effectiveness of the proposed model. The study also has a number of practical implications for educational leadership. The author recommends the need for professional training programs to inspire the leaders to fulfill the requirements for enhancing the trust system in educational institutions.
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