Leadership Style

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My Desired Leadership Style the Transformational Leader

Cristina Robinson

Florida State College at Jacksonville

Abstract

I aspire to be a transformational leader. Transformational leaders possess the unique to inspire their subordinates to be the best they can be. This leadership style can be used for good or bad some Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Adolf Hitler were both transformational leaders. No matter what the circumstances are that motivate a transformational leader, they must possess values that guide them through their leadership. There is no cookie cutter example of a transformational leader each leader has their own way of doing things but an authentic transformational leader must utilize certain skills, competencies, experiences, knowledge, and traits.

I personally believe that it is very important for a leader to have a versatile leadership approach. As I have developed my leadership skills over the past few years I have experienced uncomfortable situations and different personalities than my own and I have had to evolve my or change my leadership style based on the circumstances that I was faced with. Although I have had to adopt some characteristics or traits from other leadership styles I believe my core leadership style would be considered transformational leadership. Based on what I know about myself and what I have learned from others is that I am currently a transformational leader, but I desire to be a better transformational leader.

What is a Transformational Leader?

Transformational leadership is a type of leadership style that leads to changes in those who follow. A leader who is transformational motivates by transforming the identities and goals of individuals to coincide with those of the group (Lovaglia, Lucas, & Baxter, 2012). Transformational leaders have the innate ability to inspire their followers into action to achieve a common goal. For example during the 2008 presidential campaign Barrack Obama used his transformational leadership style by inspiring many, who had never voted before to get out and vote. Through his inspirational speeches, grassroots movement to register voters, and his seemingly American Dream come true life story he was able to, for a short period of time inspire and motivate an otherwise jaded and broken country that had been fractured among racial and economic lines for years to believe in and demand change. Transformational leaders are generally energetic, enthusiastic and passionate, and they invoke a since of ownership and pride in their followers. When faced with a problem or issue within an organization the transformational leader can create relay a message so that it is either accepted with enthusiasm or without contention. Instead of trying to force change on their subordinates the transformational leader creates an atmosphere of even exchanges of thoughts and ideas toward the changes. This type of leader seeks to motivate followers by transforming their conceptions of self and their private goals to coincide with the larger purposes of the group. Rather than working for money, employees work to be part of the success of a larger mission.

The concept of transformational leadership was initially introduced by leadership expert and presidential biographer James MacGregor Burns. According to Burns, transformational leadership can be seen when "leaders and followers make each other to advance to a higher level of moral and motivation." Through the strength of their vision and personality, transformational leaders are able to inspire followers to change expectations, perceptions and motivations to work towards common goals.

Later, researcher Bernard M. Bass expanded upon Burns original ideas to develop what is today referred to as Bass’ Transformational Leadership Theory. According to Bass, transformational leadership can be defined based on the impact that it has on followers. Transformational leaders, Bass...
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