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Friday, July 13, 2012

Relationship and Management Theories - Leadership

Transformational Leadership (Relationship Theories)

Relationship theories (also known as “Transformational theories”) focus upon the connections formed between leaders and followers. These leaders motivate and inspire people by helping group members see the importance and higher good of the task.

In James MacGregor Burns concept of „transforming leadership he states “leadership is relationship of mutual stimulation and elevation that converts followers into leaders and may convert leaders into moral agents”. “It occurs when one or more person engage with others in such a way that leaders and followers raise one another to higher levels of motivation or morality”. This theory assumes that awareness of task importance motivates people and a focus on the team or organization produces better work.

Transformational leadership is about the ability of the leader to motivate and empower their followers:

The goal of transformational leadership is to ‘transform’ people and organisations in a literal sense – to change them in mind and heart; enlarge vision, insight, and understanding; clarify purposes; make behaviour congruent with beliefs, principles, or values; and bring about changes that are permanent, self-perpetuating, and momentum building” (Bass and Avolio, 1994).

The main elements of a transformational leadership are:

 Creating a strategic vision that portrays a clear picture of realistic attractive future. It helps in bonding the employees together towards achieving the organizational goal.

 Communicating the vision helps in putting things in process.this helps in making the employees understand the significance of the visionary goal.I also proper framing builds up an emotional appeal.

 Modeling the vision-It means walk the talk. The leaders actually enact it by doing things that symbolize the vision.

 Building the commitment to the vision –This may have several methods like using words, symbols stories that may build a contagious enthusiasm and energize people to adopt the vision as their own.

Elements of transformational Leadership

Building the commitment to the vision

Modeling the vision

Communicating the vision

Creating a strategic vision

Transformational leadership is frequently contrasted with “transactional leadership where the leader gains commitment from followers on the basis of a straightforward exchange of pay and security etc. in return for reliable work. Transformational Leaders are often charismatic, but are not as narcissistic as pure Charismatic Leaders, who succeed through a believe in themselves rather than a believe in others. Transactional leadership conjures a managerial image, while transformational leadership evokes images of extraordinary individuals such as Martin Luther King, Jr., or Ghandi.

Transactional leadership

Transactional leadership is based in contingency, in that reward or punishment is contingent upon performance. Management theories (also known as “Transactional theories”) focus on the role of supervision, organization, and group performance.

The transactional leadership style was first described by Max Weber in 1947 and again by Bernard M. Bass in 1981. Hollander (1964; 1978a) and Jacobs (1970) espoused an exchange, or transactional, theory of leadership, which brought followers into focus by highlighting power relations, and the negotiations necessary among people of unequal power and different agendas.

The transactional leadership style developed by Bass is based on the hypothesis that followers are motivated through a system of rewards and punishment. The transactional leader's view of the leader / follower relationship is one of quid pro quo - or this for that. If the follower does something good, they will be rewarded. If the follower does something wrong, they will be punished. In addition to contingent rewards, transactional leaders are said to "manage by exception", which refers to the idea that they are less interested in changing, or transforming the work environment, or employees, but seek to keep everything constant except where problems occur (e.g. lack of goal attainment).

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