LEADERSHIP Essay Example

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Leadership is the act of making people to follow whereby one is the sole decision maker. Different leaders have different attributes and qualities in their leadership. Successful running of an organization is piloted through the skills and influence of the leader. There are various types of leadership that different scholars have categorized which include charismatic transformational and transactional among many others.

Charismatic leadership

Charismatic leadership is the act of an individual being devoted to sanctity that is exceptional, showing attributes of a hero or unique character that is exemplary of a person and of patterns that are normative or revealed orders by him. Leaders who are charismatic are charming that their followers follow them without questioning. Charismatic leadership succeeds due to the strong appeal of the leaders to the followers’ values whereby this bondage that is psychological between the leader and the follower enables them achieve their goals. The leader contains attributes such as self-actualization, motivation on attainment of power, self enhancement and openness to change. The process of charismatic leadership is viewed as a product that is compound of some factors: the attributes and the leader, situation that is formal that demands a leader of such qualities and the association that exists among followers and their leader. The charismatic leadership undergoes some steps that include identification whereby the leader socializes to get noticed, arousal of activity whereby the leader makes his followers become part of evolution he intends to bring; commitment to his work whereby the leader may jeopardize his own life so as to appear courageous by his followers during his mission; disenchantment whereby since the leader is mortal, he may bring in his leadership routization and some of his followers may find him a loser hence eventually detach from him; dispernalization whereby the leader conducts delegation of some of his work to his followers and the last step is alienation whereby redundancy of the leader occurs (Lewin et al, 1939).

Transformational leadership

Transformational leadership is the approach in leadership that enables individuals upholds change as well as the systems in the social aspect. There are four elements that exist in leadership termed as transformational. This includes: consideration that is individualized whereby the needs of the followers are attended by the leader who also listens to their concerns. The leader keeps open communication and also his followers get to meet challenges placed by him. Another element is the stimulation that is intellectual whereby assumptions are challenged by the leader who is also a risk taker. This creates some form of creativity in their followers who are nurtured to independent thinking. This leadership upholds learning as a value and also situations that are unexpected are viewed as opportunity for learning. The third element is motivation that is inspirational. This involves the creation of a vision that appeals so as inspire followers. The leader sets standards that are high, optimistic communication about goals that are set for future and lays out reasons for the task at hand. Purposeful strong sense should be part of the followers to get motivated. The last element is the influence that is idealized. This brings about ethical attributes that can be emulated from the leader by the followers (Bass, 2008).

Transactional leadership

This type of leadership mainly dwells on performance of the group, organization as well as supervision role. The leader enforces his leadership through making his followers comply to his rules by punishing and rewarding them. The transaction leaders focus on maintaining things as they are and not bringing up any change. They follow up the work of their followers so as to look for any deviations as well as faults. Transactional leadership is best at emergency and crisis situation. It is preferred in situations where a unique style is to be followed in completing a certain project (Bass, 2008). Transactional leadership possesses certain qualities that are action-oriented as well as directive.

Differences in the type of leadership

The difference between transaction and transformational is as follows: in transactional responsive leadership exists whereas in transformational, there is proactive leadership; in transactional leadership, the leader carries out all his duties within the culture of an organization whereas transformational leadership implements ideas that are new so as to change the culture of the organization. Transactional leadership has its objectives achieved through punishing and rewarding of employees whereas in transformational objectives are achieved by followers through ideals that are high and values that are upright, transaction leader appeals to the interest of his followers thereby motivates them while transformational leader encourages his followers to put the interests of the group as first priority thereby motivates them. Charismatic leadership has also unique qualities such as the leader possessing a charm that enables him rule without questions from his followers since the bondage is psychological.

Behavior in transformational theory

According to Yukl (1999), there are some behaviors that he identifies that exist in transformational theory. The multifactor leadership questionnaire measures these behaviors. This is done through administering this leadership questionnaire to the subordinates to rate the frequency of the leader’s usage of each behavior type. The MLQ content varies with time whereby transactional and transformational behaviors are added to the latest version (Bass et al, 1996). Leadership that can be termed as transformational includes considerations that are individualized, stimulation that is intellectual, influence that is idealized as well as motivation that is inspirational (Chemers, 2000).

Criticisms on transactional leadership

Transactional leadership contains certain criticisms. Its definition which is the process of the exchange between the leader and the subordinate does not contain a link that is strong enough between the process and each behavior that are transactional. However, leadership that is transactional contains behavior of the leader which is a collection that is diverse that contains unclear denominator that is common. Contingent behavior that is rewarded contains stuff that are not unclear of which are involved in exchange process that is impersonal. Instead, contingent behavior that is rewarded also involves provision of recognition to followers, whereby it is a unique behavior type (Yukl, 1999). Transactional leadership may be involved in the provision of recognition and praise. The theory behind the response to a problem that is attended only when it is serious by the leader is not proven. A response may not be explicitly measured of which exchange process may be involved. Description of the corrective measures of the leader is not stated. Subordinate performance may be monitored in several ways (Yukl, 2000) whereby transactional leadership can be facilitated.

Understanding of leadership

Leadership is a process that involves influence of social lives whereby an individual come up with strategies as well as supports others to accomplish a similar task (Chemers, 2000). Leadership involves traits, interactions that are situational, function, power, behavior, charisma, visions as well as intelligence. There are certain attributes that distinguish a leader from the rest of the crowd. Some leadership qualities are inherited from families with leadership. Different situations have different leaders whereby an individual can possess different attributes in one situation but cannot possess them in another. Leadership attributes can also develop from different times whereby situations shape up an individual’s thinking. A leader is termed as successful only when he or she achieves the goal of the group he is in charge of. To enable the leader achieve his required goals, he or she should monitor his followers wherever they get stuck, motivate them, intervene to situations that are problematic among others. The leader should act as the role models and set high standards so that the followers would improve or even aim at performing their best.

Analysis of interview about personal idea of leadership

After interviewing 3 people about the attitude and what they know about leadership, I came up with the information below whereby each number represents the number of the interviewee:

  1. Leadership is an ability that is natural whereby one is able to show motivation as well as inspiration and guidance to the right path. The leader should be able to solve problems, create future visions and contain a directional sense. My high school principal was good leader. He would intervene to situations that sounded impossible, he also changed the school rules and made all of us follow his ideas of which enabled the performance of the school to rise by 5 points. Currently at my work place, my boss does not possess excellent leadership skills since in most cases he does not solve arising challenges hence the performance of the organization reduces yearly.

  2. A leader is an individual with vision, who possesses knowledge on general situations, contains excellent organizational as well as interpersonal skills that can constructively provide feedbacks. My previous manager had all these skills. He would provide all the employees with feedbacks that were always positive and constructive which was mostly taken as a corrective measure to improve on performance.

  3. A leader is someone who is good in persuading his followers without enforcing his intentions using his leadership position. Our project planning manager possesses this charm whereby whenever a new project comes up he explains ways of approaching it tactfully and every employee gets the sense and idea without questioning. When these methodologies are used always, excellent performance is achieved. My former project manager was not a good leader since he would impose questionable ideas that eventually brought losses to the organization.

Similarities of information from the interview

It has been clearly seen that charismatic and transformational theories have been described from these interviews. From my view, there were also these two theories. Charismatic leadership theory was seen whereby the project planning manager would device ways of tackling issues that nobody questioned and eventually had positive impact. Transformational theory was observed whereby the school principal invented new rules which enabled the school performance improve in points.


Bass, B. M,(1985), Leadership and Performance, New York: Free Press

Chemers, M., (2000). Leadership research and theory. Educational publishing foundation.

Lewin, K., Lippitt, R. et al. (1939). Patterns of Aggressive behavior in experimentally created social climates. Journal of Social
Psychology 10(2): 271-299

Yukl, G. (1999). An evaluation of conceptual weaknesses in transformational and charismatic leadership theories. Leadership Quarterly, 10, 285-305, retrieved from: http:/ / dx. doi. org/10.1016/ S1048-9843(99)00013-2.