Leadership Critique

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Leadership can be defined as a process of social influence whereby a person needs the support and aid of others to accomplish a common task. Leadership theory is the approach adopted by the manager to implement authority in the organization by leading the staffs to meet the organization objectives. Leadership theories are applied by the managers to enable them to deliver all the responsibility regarding leadership and management. The early identification and classification of leadership theories were majorly based on the personality aspect that defined the leader and his or her followers. The common leadership theories include naturalistic theories, functional theory, situational theory, autocratic theory, participative theories, transactional theory, transformational theory, and moral leadership theory. The leadership theory of interest to be discussed by this easy is the transactional leadership theory and transformational leadership theory. The reason for choosing these two types of leadership theories is because they are the theories that are currently used by most of the organizations. Even though both the theories are used one has proven to be better than the other.

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It is important to understand that leadership is an important responsibility than helps an organization to achieve its set goals. Some of the reasons to why leaders are perceived as critical because;

Motivation: leaders always motivate the employees by promoting rewords on the work well done.

Creating confidence: most of the leaders create confidence among the workers by recognizing and appreciating the work that they have done.

Builds work environment: for the employees to work efficiently, leaders ensures that the working environment is effective, and this can be achieved by effective human relation.

Initiate action: the leader must communicate the policies and plans to the employees for the employees to understand where the work starts.

Providing guidance: the leader needs to guide the employees on various issues and should understand that their work is not only to supervise.Building morale: the leader must ensure that the employees are ready to co-operate and be committed to their work. This may make the workers perform to their best.

Co-ordination: the leader can achieve this by reconciling the interest of the organization and that of the employees.


This is a type of leadership style that the leaders use rewards and punishment to make their followers achieve the set objectives of an organization. This type of leadership style is not always focused on changing the future but to keep things the same (Bass and Riggio, 2006). Those leaders who use transactional leadership style are always paid attention to their follower's workers with the aim of identifying the mistakes made by the follows. This type of leadership style works effectively in projects that need to be carried out in a particular way or in crisis and emergency situations.

In the transactional leadership style, the leaders always stress on the short- term goals, procedures, and standard rules. The leaders do not encourage creativity or appreciate any new idea from the followers' worker. This style of leadership cannot be used in problems that are complex. It only works well in organizational problems that are clearly defined and simple. These leadership styles do not always reward any new ideas that do not fit the current goals and plans. In most cases the reward given to the employees for his or her compliance and effort is always in a form of money.

This kind of leadership theory can effectively work in areas that the organization is focused on improving productivity and reducing time. Improvement in the productivity and cost reduction are some of the short-term plans emphasized by the transactional leadership style. Most of the transactional leaders are always action oriented, and their relationship with the follower' workers are not emotional.

There are three assumptions in the transactional leadership theory, these assumptions are:

The employees have to obey the order from the manager: the employees have to adhere to the rules and regulation and must follow the directive of their superior even if they think it is wrong.

The employees are motivated by punishment and reward: if the employees do what the management needs correctly, they are mostly rewarded. However, those employees who do not follow the directives of the management are always punished.

The employees are not self-motivated: the employees cannot do any tasks without the supervision of the management. For the employees to work efficiently; they need the directives and close supervision of the leaders.

Most of the researchers referrers to the transactional style of leadership as insufficient but not bad in developing the full leadership potential. However, leaders are warned not to practice this type of leadership style exclusively. If practiced exclusively, it may form an environment that is permitted by power, politics, position and perks.

The reason for choosing transactional leadership is because it is a leadership that most of the organization practices it without understanding the effect it imposes on the organizations. Good leadership style should be one that helps the organization to achieve both its current and while moving towards making the future plans. Most of the organizations need to understand that when they rely on transactional leadership style, they are operating on a dangerous path. Even though these industries will, increase their current production and reduce the cost, their future is endangered. In the Present world that most of the organizations are operating on is changing very first, and most of the organizations must be ready to embrace change if they need to be competitive and outdo their rival organizations. The leaders need to be innovative, and the employees need to be motivated to achieve the set goals of the organization. However, leaders need to understand that the practice of transactional leadership style will not put the organization at the competitive level and may lead to the collapse of the organization.

Transactional leadership is best applied by the coaches of a team. The players are always motivated to win by presenting a reward for winning the game. Because of the reward, the players are always ready to withstand pain and injuries to ensure that they win a given game.


This is a type of leadership style where the management work with employees to identify some areas that need change, motivate the employee towards achieving the vision of the company and executing the change. This type of leadership style improves the job performance, morale, and motivation of workers using various mechanisms (Suda, 2005). Some of the mechanisms applied includes; the leader being a role model for the workers and increasing their interest in the project; understanding the weakness and strength of the employees; challenging the employees to be responsible for their work; allowing the leaders to align the employees with duties that improve their performance.

Transformational leaders are always confident about their employees and they always believe that their employees can do their best. This has resulted to the employees being stimulated, empowered, and inspired to work efficiently. Transformational leaders are also emotionally attached to their workers, and they care about their personal needs and development. This style of leadership can work correctly in complex workgroups and organizations. In a complex situation, employees always need a leader who can inspire them and these challenges the employees, and they feel empowered. This also makes them loyal to the leaders and their performance improves.

Transformational leadership has four components which include:

Inspirational Motivation: the transformational leader has the ability to motivate and inspire his followers.

Intellectual Stimulation: transformational leader challenges the employees to be creative and innovative. The leaders also challenge the employees to higher performance level.

Idealized Influence: transformational leader serves as a perfect role model for the employees or the followers.

Individualized Consideration: transformational leaders show sincere concern for the feelings and needs of the followers.

The reason for choosing transformational leadership style is to stress why this type of leadership is needed when an organization. This kind of leadership is mainly needed when the organization is going through tough time and is in needs of articulating a vision, putting the company first, and motivating employees. In case an organization fails to practice this type of leadership at this hard time, and then the organization will not be in a position to withstand the competition from other organizations.

Some of the transformational leadership includes the likes of Bill Gates of Microsoft and the late Steve Jobs of Apple (MSG, 2006). As the name implies transformational leadership leads to total transformation of an organization. For an instant, the late transformational leader Steve Jobs was successful in changing the idea of the consumers of mobile technology, computing, and the mode of consumption of media in the digital world. On the other hand, Bill Gates has recognized with the pioneering the personal computer revolution that has been of advantage to billions of people and has significantly transformed their business landscape. This type of leadership contributed to raising the Microsoft and Apple companies to greater heights. The common thing about these two leaders is that both the leaders had a vision and the ability to bring their vision into reality. When comparing transformational leadership style to transactional leadership style, most of the research has shown that transformational leadership style is associated with a positive result.

It is believed that most of the big and profitable industries are associated to the practice of transformational leadership skill. The leaders are more open and ready to accept new ideas and have a higher possibility of motivating the followers intellectually. Most of the transformational leaders are achievements oriented and likely to mobilize employees to achieving the organizational goals. Transformational leaders are more outgoing and interact with various leaders and employees and are more liable to have an effective interpersonal relationship. Transformational leaders are stable emotionally, and this enables them to be a better role model to the employees, therefore, engaging them in fulfilling the organization's goals.


Leadership is a vital aspect of the world. For anything to work well there must be a leader to ensure that everything is progressing as planned. However, the type of leader or the leadership style applied to any project or organization is critical. The success or the failure of an organization is dependent on the employees. Therefore it is important to recognize the role of the employees in an organization and come up with ways that can drive them to undertake their responsibilities effectively.

Each and every organization needs to grow and be more competitive in the market. However, not all the organization survives the competition, some suffer great losses, and others collapsed while other makes big profits. The main determining factor for the success and failure of various organizations is the leadership theories they use. Most of the current organizations either use the transactional or the transformational leadership theory in their management. However, these two theories have different outcomes in an organization.

Transactional leadership style mainly relies on punishing or rewarding the foll...

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