The Impact of Transformational Leadership

In this new era, transformational leadership is something that many people think of and would like to experience contact with. Not everyone can become either a transformational leader or transactional leader. To me, I believe the Behaviour School of Taught that either transformational leadership or transactional leadership can be trained for the leaders.

Meanwhile, a group of followers will be in a position inferior than the leader. This group of followers are usually the workers in an organization that received influence from the leaders. Managers stand in the middle of the hierarchy to manage and execute the influence of the leader.

The questions are always being which type leadership is better. Is it transactional leadership or transformational leadership? Can transformational leadership improve the lives of the followers? How significant of the transformational leadership to an organization?

In my opinion, transactional leadership was suitable to be applied in Malaysia from 1957 to 2007. This is because within the 50 years of Malaysia after independent; the majority of Malaysians mentality were very simple and structural. Since 2008, many Malaysians had awakened and their mentality changed to dynamic and active. Thus, transformational era has begun and transformational leadership will be playing a pivotal role.

To me, a transformational leadership must not afraid of changes and also not being selfish. Failure to adopt these behaviours, the person will fail miserably as a transformational leader. After having these behaviours, the transformational leader must follow the guidelines stated by Bass (1985).

Transformational leaders arouse emotions in their followers which motivates them to act beyond the framework of what may be described as exchange relations. The followers must not be in the first place being informed that their effort and reward as these will be subjective based on outcome. The leaders must be fair in the evaluation. If the leader is not fair, then a transactional leadership will be more suitable in this scenario.

Transformational leadership must also be proactive and forms new expectations in followers. When there is a new expectation, only then, the followers will change their attitude for improvement. The leaders are distinguished by their capacity to inspire and provide individualized consideration, intellectual simulation and idealized influence to their followers. If you expect the followers to stimulate intellectually by themselves, then it is better they become the leader instead of you. As a leader, you must take the first steps in most area.

Transformational leaders create learning opportunities for their followers and stimulate followers to solve problems. The learning opportunities will provide a good platform for the followers to improve their working skills and also train them with the problem solving skills. This will greatly change the followers to be better workers and are ready for more important tasks or promotion in place.

Relationship between a leader and follower must be strong, thus the leaders must possess good visioning, rhetorical and management skills to develop strong emotional bonds with followers. When strong bonding being achieved, the followers can be easily influenced by the leaders. Again, the leaders must not take advantage for their own benefit from the strong bonding; instead strive for the high performance of the followers.

The leaders motivate followers to work for goals that go beyond self-interest. This is in contrast with transactional leadership where it depends on the leader’s power to reinforce subordinates for their successful completion of the bargain. Relationship between a leader and the follower must not be counted on rewards / money / bargain but must come out from the true friendship / emotions behaviour. Only then, the followers will contribute beyond their self-interest.

As everyone knows, the world is currently facing likelihood of higher inflation on goods and services. This creates hardship for followers who earn low wages and some of the middle class. Followers can take the opportunity of working together with the transformational leader to improve their skills and also income. This can help them to cover the increase cost of living in Malaysia.

The followers are also less subject to exploitation because the transformational leaders understand their needs and work toward the follower’s betterment. The exploitation can be the form of low wages and poor working conditions etc. The followers will gain job satisfaction and become highly willing to contribute to the organization. The effect is also being felt by the follower’s family members. This will create healthy families for the follower’s children to grown up.

The organization also received benefit by having transformational leaderships. The leaders approach onto the followers will enable the workers to give a high level productivity. When productivity increases, the organization revenue also increases. At the same time, when the workers job satisfaction is high, the staff turnover will be greatly reduced. When staff turnover reduced, the organization operating expenses will also be reduced.

In every society, the working cultural is not the same. This is mainly due to diverse background of the followers. Different cultural has different leadership effectiveness. This is very subjective because there is no 100% sure that transformational leadership is more effective than transactional leadership or vice-versa. My opinion is that, there is a need of mixture of leadership styles in most society. Anyhow, I believe that transformational leadership is the best leadership style that can create a harmony and empowerment between the working class and the top business management.

In the end, all elements are interconnected. It started with the transformational leader influence the followers to upgrade their skills and well beings. When the followers achieved this, the organization will increase the net profit due to the followers’ contributions on the work quality. Eventually, the local society can live in harmony and prosperity among all the stakeholders. The final outcome will be on the country. This will spur the economic growth of Malaysia and improve the life of every Malaysians in terms of high income and high social welfare.

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