No matter what continent you live on, the people there are hungry for hope!  The world is constantly looking for a leader whose message is more than rhetoric but embraces the ability to produce change.

Polling young minds today, it doesn’t take long to hear the sense of hopelessness emanating from their lips.  The attitude of living life just for today is a result of little or no hope for a better tomorrow.  This may seem beyond our scope of individualized leadership but let’s take it one step further.  What has driven this attitude?

For nearly fifty years leadership studies have focused on leadership as an “exchange process,” better known as transactional leadership.  Transactional leaders promise rewards to their followers in exchange for performance.  (You do this for me and I’ll do this for you!)

In more recent years Transactional leadership has given way to a more engaging style which seemingly has a more appealing attraction.  James MacGregor Burns was the first to use the term Transformational leadership as an alternative to Transactional and here’s three reasons why…

1.  Transactional leaders work within the situation; Transformational leaders change the  situation.

2.  Transactional leaders accept the rules and values; Transformational leaders seek to better them through change.

3. Transactional leaders talk about payoffs; Transformational leaders talk about goals.

Bernard Bass suggests, “transformational leaders motivates others to do more than they expected to do, by raising their awareness of different values, by getting them to transcend their self-interests for the cause and by expanding their portfolio of needs and wants.”

In short, Transformational leaders use their leadership platform to bring about positive change first in the followers which translates into a better employee and organization.  As a leader of a small company or just a manager within a company, your leadership should be producing positive change or you will just continue to create a transactional mindset and go nowhere.

Jesus Christ was a Transformational leader!  His desire for his followers was to make them just like himself.  One day Jesus said to his followers; “Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet.  I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.”  (John 13:14-15)

Leaders transform by example…let your employee’s see yours!

Contribution By : Dr Charles Cope