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Transformational and transactional leadership : an exploratory study in a developing country

Leadership has been an important topic in the social sciences for decades. Recently, there has been renewed interest in leadership. In all of the new developments the theory, which has generated the most interest by practitioners and academia alike, is the model of Bass and coworkers, which claims that their transformational - transactional leadership model is a new paradigm, neither replacing nor explained by other models. This study explores these concepts in the business settings of a developing country. Both quantitative and qualitative research methods are employed to collect data for triangulation purposes. For quantitative data collection the researcher translated, tested and applied English and Urdu versions of standard transformational and transactional inventory - Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ) by Bass & Avolio 1997. A similar process was followed with a climate inventory - Creative Climate Questionnaire (CCQ) by Ekvall 1993. These inventories were completed by followers. In total 290 usable questionnaires were obtained. The researcher also developed semi-structured interview schedules for both leaders and their followers. The results of the factor analyses of MLQ showed that the three postulated types of leadership responses can be found in the data. The scales were found to differ slightly from those reported by Bass & Avolio 1997. Furthermore, transformational leadership had strong positive correlation with outcome factors and creative climate and transactional leadership also showed positive correlation with outcome factors and creative climate. Hierarchical regression analysis also showed that transformational leadership showed significant add-on effects to transactional leadership in explaining the outcome factors and creative climate. Its importance flows from the critical difference in implications when we challenge the orthodoxy of Bass and Avolio. To the researcher's knowledge this is the first analysis made in this fashion and therefore contributes evidence that transformational leadership and transactional leadership coexist. The Creative Climate Questionnaire (CCQ) was employed to test the convergent and discriminant validity of MLQ. MLQ showed strong convergent validity as the indicated strengths of the correlation were decidedly in favour of the transformational leadership factors and transactional leadership. Furthermore it also showed a strong discriminant validity as there was strong negative correlations between creative climate and passive leadership factors. To the researcher's knowledge this is the first time convergent and discriminant validities of MLQ have been tested in this fashion and therefore contributes further evidence of the validity of MLQ. The researcher believes it is also important as it shows that a carefully selected single instrument can be used to test the convergent and discriminant validity of another instrument. The content analysis of interviews of both leaders and followers showed that there were distinct differences between reported characteristics of transformational leaders and non-transformational leaders. The leadership characteristics that differentiated transformational and non-transformational leaders were: vision, captivating/inspiring speaking skills, an ability to excite, and countercultural/nontraditional behaviour and practices, high energy and dynamism, brilliance in terms of strategic insight and knowledge and active campaigning for organisational goals. A further distinguishing point between the transformational and non-transformational leaders is that, in interviews, subordinates of the transformational leaders described their leader's approval as a critical source of leader confirmation. Context was also examined to determine its role in fostering the appearance of the phenomenon. No specific context appeared to play a determining or catalytic role. Evidence from three surrogate measures for context appears to confirm the hypothesis that no one specific context (e.g. context of crisis) plays the determining role in the appearance, presence, and therefore impact of a transformational leader. Nonetheless the findings do not preclude the possibility that an underlying, determining dimension exists or that certain environments are more conducive to emergence of transformational leadership than others.
Date January 2001
CreatorsKhokhar, Faisal Qadeer
PublisherUniversity of Manchester
Source SetsEthos UK
Detected LanguageEnglish
TypeElectronic Thesis or Dissertation

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