What is getting transformed in Transformational Leadership?


Whenever I take Transformational Leadership topic, one or the other person eagerly asks – “What is getting transformed?”. I thought it would be nice to share my answer views in a post quoting few references.

James MacGregor Burns says:

Transforming leadership occurs when one or more persons engage with others in such a way that leaders and followers raise one another to higher levels of motivation and morality by transforming leadership which ultimately becomes moral in that it raises the level of human conduct and ethical aspirations of both the leader and led and, thus, has a transforming effect on both.[1]

Transformation will elevate and discipline the inner soul of both leader & follower.  Hence goals, values, principles, motivation and morality of both leader and follower will be one and the same at one point of time — it is like one soul two body. In such case, no supervision needed — each one knows what to do in different situations.  This is the ultimate goal of leadership.

Due to difference in human thinking & nature,  each one of us differ in skill level to perform an activity. Kelley (1995) indicates that leadership and followership are equal but different activities often played by the same people at different times. Individuals who assume leadership roles have sound visioning, interpersonal and organizational skills, and the desire and willingness to lead. Effective followers are distinguished by their capacity for self-management, strong commitment and courage.[2]

Summation of Transformational Leadership was given excellently in Reference [2].  It is a nice gist and has almost all activities of Transformational Leadership.

1. Leaders have high moral and ethical values.
2. Leaders express genuine interest in followers.
3. Leaders have an inspirational vision.
4. Genuine trust exists between leaders and led.
5. Followers share leader’s values and vision.
6. Leaders and followers perform beyond self-interest.
7. Participatory decision-making is the rule.
8. Innovative thinking and action is expected.
9. Motivation is to do the right thing.
10. Leaders mentor.

References:
1. James MacGregor Burns, Leadership , New York: Harper & Row, 1978), pp.4, 20

2. Transformational Leadership by Colonel Mark A. Homrig, 21 Dec 2001. Retrieved on 08th Jan 2009 from http://leadership.au.af.mil/documents/homrig.htm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s