Transformational vs Transactional Leadership

Leadership, Maslow's hierarchy of needs, Transformational leadership

Transformational versus Transactional Leadership

Leadership and Team Development-Fall 2011


This research paper addresses various aspects of transformational and transactional leadership styles. It mainly presents a comparative overview of these leadership styles. Further, it talks about an example of each transformational and transactional leadership in real-world. This leads to mentioning various applications that each leadership style finds in today’s business. Analysis of strengths and weaknesses or potential growth areas of both leadership styles is mentioned to help in better understanding of the subject. At last, the paper concludes with some discusses if knowing one’s leadership style and leadership style of your leader is important or not.

In today’s volatile economy, the business is rapidly changing and getting more competitive with each passing day. Therefore, in order to survive in this market, the organizations need to continuously come out with innovative solutions. In these situations, transformational leaders play a vital role by encouraging creativity from their followers and maximizing their performance and productivity. On the other hand, transactional leaders are needed to maintain the stability and achieve goals on a regular basis. In order to analyze or compare these two styles of leadership, a brief introduction to both the styles is needed.

Transformational Leader
According to Bernard Bass, “Transformational leadership is 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.” Transformational leaders are characterized by the following four major characteristics of their leadership also known as four I’s: 1) Idealized influence or Charisma

According to Bass,...
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