Transformational Leadership

Topics: Leadership, Situational leadership theory, Management Pages: 9 (2756 words) Published: February 5, 2012

The biggest empire in the world was built during the late 11th. It was started by someone who were nothing and subsequently become someone who world would not forget. He is Genghis Khan, one of the greatest leaders in the world. Besides him, there are many famous leaders in the world who has contributed and influenced in many aspects of life. Winston Churchill, Martin Luther King, Jr, Mahatma Gandhi, Napoleon, Adolf Hitler or our own father are maybe people whom we considered as a great leader.

Their achievements could not be separated from how they manage people around them, motivate, and being someone who can act as a role model for them. And that leadership is about. Yes, it needs skills to do that and it is not as simple as we turning the palm of our hand. There are some processes should be gone through which can’t be done instantly. It needs some valuable and positive changes among people. However, leadership can be learned, understand and develop among people.

Leadership can be categorised into two styles. The first style is called transactional leadership while the other one is called transformational leadership. And on this occasion, the transformational leadership will be explained further. What is transformational leadership, why is it important to organisation, what are the types of its leaders, how do the transformational leaders behave and why resist following the leaders.


Bass (1990) defined transformational leadership as a form of leadership that occurs when leaders broaden and elevate the interests of their employees, when they generate awareness and acceptance of the purposes and the mission of the group and when they stir their employees to look beyond their own self-interest for the good of the group.

And transformational leadership focuses on how the followers can be motivated, guided and directed to achieve the goals of the work by the leaders (Sullivan & Decker, 2005). They further emphasized that generating employee’s commitment to the vision is the goal of transformational leadership. Additionally, according to Kelly-Heidenthal (2004), ‘transformational leadership is based on the idea of empowering others to engage in pursuing a collective purpose by working together to achieve a vision of a preferred future’. Transformational leadership goes beyond transactional leadership and motivates followers to identify with the leader's vision and sacrifice their self-interest for that of the group or the organization (Bass, 1985).

Usually, managers controlled most activities, telling each person what, when and how to do each task. In transformational leadership, managers trust their subordinates and leave them space to breathe and grow. This seems that transformational is more developmental and constructive form of leadership for both individual employees and the organization as a whole. In other words, transformational leadership leaves the idea that leaders are expecting to have responsibility to coaching, mentoring and motivating their followers in order to develop them while they are pursuing the goals. One example is Sam Walton, founder of Wal-Mart, who often visited Wal-Mart stores across the country to meet with associates to show his appreciation and integrity for what they did for the company. Sam Walton gave “rules for success” in his autobiography, one of which was to appreciate associates with praise (Walton, 1996).


Factors such as rapid technological change, heightened levels of competition, a rising flow of products from newly industrialized countries, and changing demographic structures made transformational leadership plays important roles in management. Shortly, it helps to improve and bring positive outcome up to organisation.

Most of the research on the transformational paradigms has proved outcomes on job satisfaction and performance (both subjective and objective)...
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