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Transformational Leadership Essay

2139 words - 9 pages

Schools are influenced by varied internal and external factors in a constantly changing environment (Navickaite & Janiunaite, 2012). There is a growing consensus among stakeholders that the current progression of education must change drastically. Educational policy makers and leaders are examining an array of school improvement efforts, including rigorous curriculum; alignment of state and national standards and organizational restructuring. According to Fullan (2001), the more complex society gets, the more sophisticated leadership must become. School leaders wrestle with the intricate challenge to implement reform efforts, increase student achievement, serve the individual ...view middle of the document...

Review of Literature
Transformational leadership was elucidated as a theory in the leadership literature during the late 1970s and early 1980s in the political arena. In the past 30 years, an extensive amount of empirical research has accumulated on transformational-transactional leadership theory. Transformational and transactional leadership was introduced by Burns in 1978, and later wholly developed by Bass (Bromley, 2007). Conger and Kanungo (1998) noted the difference between the two types of leadership lies in what leaders and followers are able to offer one another. Transformational leaders increase morale, motivation and morale of followers; whereas, transactional leaders promotes compliance of followers through rewards and punishment (Bass, 1999). Transactional leaders accept and maintain the status quo. In contrast, transformational leaders change organizational culture by presenting new dogma and goals, and by changing how followers define their roles. Changes in society and the education realm have resulted in the need for leaders to become more transformational and less transactional to remain effective (Bass, 1999).
Transformation Leadership: Four Tenets
A transformational leader cultivates leaders in the school environment and purposefully stimulates changes and innovations by inspiring follows to improve themselves and take accountability for the school’s outcomes (Navickaite & Janiunaite, 2012). Bass and Riggio (2006) stress that transformational leadership inspires the followers to increase their activity, reach more ambitious goals, not to be afraid to make courageous decisions. Transformational leadership centers on shared needs, aspirations and values. The basis of transformational leadership lies in converting followers into leaders and moral agents. It involves assessing staff members’ mental models, satisfying their needs, valuing and inspiring them (Balyer, 2012). Kruger, Witziers, and Sleegers (2007) state the effects “of transformational leadership clearly showed that transformational leadership has a positive impact on teacher motivation, professional growth, and on a variety of organizational conditions, including school culture, contributing to educational change in schools”. Transformational leadership theory has evolved to describe four dimensions of behaviors exhibited by leaders: idealized influence or charisma, inspirational motivation, intellectual stimulation, and individualized consideration (Avolio, 1999).
Idealized Influence
Idealized influence is a component of transformational leadership and “refers to charismatic actions of the leader that are centered on values, beliefs, and a sense of mission” (Antonakis et al., 2003). Kelloway et al. (2003) adds that idealized influence is displayed when leaders act in a consistent way and are seen as dependable and reliable by those who follow. Idealized influence demonstrates the capability of building trust and is a radical factor in organizational change. ...

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