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Transformational leadership theory is one of the most widely accepted and implemented theories in modern leadership. Stemming from Burns’ (1978) seminal work in the field in his book “Transforming Leadership,” the theory described a continuum from the transactional leader (give me this and I will give you that), and the transformational leader (let’s make one another better, and build a better organization together). On the complete opposite side of the continuum from transformational leadership is non-leadership, or laissez-faire leadership. Pointing to Mahatma Gandhi as a classic example of a transformational leader, Burns (1978) described a leadership style referred to by Northouse (2018) as “the process whereby a person engages with others and creates a connection that raises the level of motivation and morality in both the leader and the follower.” In making the connection between this type of leadership and Gandhi as an example, Northouse states that “Gandhi raises the hopes and demands of millions of his people and in the process was changed himself.”
Read below and write an essay about transformational leadership.
1) Perform research and describe a team or organization that uses a transformational approach.
2) Compare the transformational environment you outlined above to a non-leadership environment (laissez-faire).
3) What are the key differences between the two approaches?
4) In terms of morale, productivity, and overall commitment, what do you think the key differences are between organizations that use a transformational approach and those with non-leaders?