Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: Among the many leadership approaches there are a few that rise above the rest. One is transformational leadership. Below is one of the best introductions to this style of leadership. The article also includes one of its major aspects, which Carly Sime calls it’s secret. Read and be introduced.
Carley Sime, Forbes Magazine, 2/5/19.
Of the many styles of leadership transformational is perhaps the most coveted. Transformational leaders enhance morale and motivation among followers, they are able to encourage them towards working for a collective good and beyond working solely out of self-interest. The effects of transformational leadership are highly desirable for the followers and the organization itself. Transformational leadership has a high payout as it positively impacts innovation, the heart of success and growth within an organization. It also increases organizational performance as well as job performance and satisfaction too. This could easily be seen as the holy grail of leadership, especially when compared to the transactional kind we have all probably known. Transactional leaders tend to over-rely on their authority as a means to get followers to perform. They’ll tell you what to do and use reward and punishment as their main leadership tools.
Agreeable individuals find ease in showing consideration for others and in the case of transformational leaders, they have idealized influence over their followers. This means they behave in a way that gains the admiration and respect of those around them and sets them apart as trustworthy and a role model.
When we pair agreeableness with extraversion we can see why these traits are positive predictors of transformational leaders. However, there is something else that sits below any traits, actions or behaviors that predict this kind of leadership. That something is self-esteem and it often doesn’t get the airtime it deserves considering it sits underneath the things transformational leadership is built upon.
Self-esteem in this context refers to a person believing in themselves as a significant, worthy and also capable member of a team or organization. A person with high self-esteem has self-respect and can accurately assess strengths and weaknesses. A person with low self-esteem is the opposite, they see themselves as inadequate and unworthy and are also unable to accurately assess their strengths and weaknesses. Leaders with high self-esteem may find transmitting enthusiasm and positivity to their followers more natural too.