Transformational Leadership Assignment Essay

Transformational leadership is a leadership that creates positive change in the followers, they take care of each other’s interests and work in the group as a whole. James MacGregor was first who brought the concept of transformational leadership. Transformational leadership is used for creating high-performance workforce which is very important.

Transformational Leadership starts with the development of a vision, a view of the future that will excite and convert potential followers. This vision may be developed by the leader, by the senior team or may emerge from a broad series of discussions.

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The important factor is the leader buys into it, hook, line and sinker.

The next step is the sale of a vision. This takes energy and commitment, as few people will immediately buy into a radical vision, and some will join the show much more slowly than others. Transformational Leader has to be very careful in creating trust, and their personal integrity is a critical part of the package that they are selling.

In parallel with the selling activity is seeking the way forward. Some Transformational Leaders know the way, and simply want others to follow them. Others do not have a ready strategy, but will happily lead the exploration of possible routes to the Promised Land. The route forwards may not be obvious and may not be plotted in details, but with a clear vision, the direction will always be known.

The final stage is to remain up-front and central during the action. Transformational Leaders are always visible and will stand up to be counted rather than hide behind their troops. They show by their attitudes and actions how everyone else should behave. They also make continued efforts to motivate and rally their followers, constantly doing the rounds, listening, soothing and enthusing.

The transformational approach depends on winning the trust of people – which is made possible by the unconscious assumption that they too will be changed or transformed in some way by following the leader.

Transformational leadership can be found at all levels of the organization: teams, departments, divisions, and organization as a whole. Such leaders are visionary, inspiring, daring, risk-takers, and thoughtful thinkers. They have a charismatic appeal. But charisma alone is insufficient for changing the way an organization operates. For bringing major changes, transformational leaders must exhibit the following four factors:

• Inspirational Motivation:

The foundation of transformational leadership is the promotion of consistent vision, mission, and a set of values to the members. Their vision is so compelling that they know what they want from every interaction. Transformational leaders guide followers by providing them with a sense of meaning and challenge. They work enthusiastically and optimistically to foster the spirit of teamwork and commitment.

• Intellectual Stimulation:

Such leaders encourage their followers to be innovative and creative. They encourage new ideas from their followers and never criticize them publicly for the mistakes committed by them. The leaders focus on the “what” in problems and do not focus on the blaming part of it. They have no hesitation in discarding an old practice set by them if it is found ineffective.

• Idealized Influence:

In this leaders act as role models that followers seek to emulate. Such leaders always win the trust and respect of their followers through their action. They typically place their followers needs over their own, sacrifice their personal gains for them, ad demonstrate high standards of ethical conduct. The use of power by such leaders is aimed at influencing them to try for the common goals of the organization.

• Individualized Consideration:

Leaders act as mentors to their followers and reward them for creativity and innovation. The followers are treated differently according to their talents and knowledge. They are empowered to make decisions and are always provided with the needed support to implement their decisions.

Constructive Conflict:

Conflicts are the lifeblood of high performing organizations. Disputes, disagreements and diverse points of view about strategy and implementation create energy, bring about change, stimulate creativity and help form strongly bonded teams in full alignment.

Organizations that encourage people to raise difficult issues find that doing so leads to innovation, new goals and the changes needed to achieve them. This approach has been adopted by many of the world’s largest multinationals, as well as law enforcement agencies, humanitarian agencies and governments.

Confronting conflict does have risks, however. If not properly managed, and if the result is winning-lose, the process can undermine teams and can damage mutual respect, alignment, engagement and trust. However, there is every reason to believe that all conflicts can result in win-win outcomes.

Effective Communication:

For communication to be effective, the listener must understand the meaning of what was said by the speaker and should be able to express it. The listener must understand the meaning good enough to respond on it. Ineffective communication occurs when the meaning is not understood by the listener.

It is the manager’s job to evaluate the performance of each employee. No doubt there will be times when an employee is not meeting the expectations of the job. As a result a poor performance appraisal will need to be written and given to the employee. It can be an uncomfortable and upsetting situation for both the employee and the manager.

If the employee receiving the poor performance appraisal is surprised, then the manager has failed. An employee should not learn of their short comings for the first time via a performance appraisal. Instead, look at it as a summary of communication that must occur before the evaluation is done.

The more transparent management is regarding an employee’s performance the more likely an employee will be able to make positive changes.

• Communicate Clear Goals and Expectations

Goals and expectations should be set before a review period begins. The goals should be based on specific job duties, as well as personal development. Involve the employee in setting the goals to ensure they are comfortable with meeting the challenges.

• Discuss Employee Performance Regularly

Ideally, management should meet with staff on a monthly basis to go over results. Every employee will benefit from on going communication. This is not just for those people who are struggling. It may sound like a big time investment, but it does not need to be. Keep the meetings short and to the point. This is meant to be an update, not a full performance appraisal meeting. Hit on any issues, and balance the meeting out with positive feedback. If the employee performance requires lengthy discussion then a more formal meeting may need to be scheduled.

• Document Employee Communication Sessions

Keep records of discussions regarding performance. Place a copy in the employees file, and send a copy to the employee. Do not do this only for conversations about poor performance. Records need to have balance with positive behaviour observations as well. Some employees may see record keeping as a form of disciplinary documentation. It is important to explain that it is not the intention. By summarizing the communication in writing any misunderstandings can often be resolved quickly. It also provides a starting point for future discussions.

Question 2

Both the Maslow’s and the Herzberg’s use a hierarchical scale (where one stage must first be fully completed before proceeding to the next stage).

The argument that both of them are based on is “we behave as we do because we are attempting to fulfil internal needs.” (Bartol et al., 2005) i.e. needs theory

They both specify the criteria as to what motivates people. However, this is controversial because entrepreneurs and people from different cultures have different values and norms, and therefore has different criteria or has criteria which are perceived as more important e.g. Greek and Japanese employees stated that safety and physiological needs are more important to them, whereas employees from Norway and Sweden saw belongingness needs as being more important.

To better understand the employees attitudes and motivation, Herzberg developed the motivation and hygiene theory to explain these results. Herzberg called motivators the satisfiers and hygiene the dissatisfies factors. Following are the main factors causing dissatisfaction and satisfaction.

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