Ethics, character, and authentic transformational leadership behavior

Ethics, character, and authentic transformational leadership behavior The morality of transformational leadership has been sharply questioned, particularly by libertarians, “grass roots” theorists, and organizational development consultants. This paper argues that to be truly transformational, leadership must be grounded in moral foundations. The four components of authentic transformational leadership (idealized influence, inspirational motivation, intellectual stimulation, and individualized consideration) are contrasted with their counterfeits in dissembling pseudo -transformational leadership on the basis of (1) the moral character of the leaders and their concerns for self and others; (2) the ethical values embedded in the leaders' vision, articulation, and program, which followers can embrace or reject; and (3) the morality of the processes of social ethical choices and action in which the leaders and followers engage and collectively pursue. The literature on transformational leadership is linked to the long-standing literature on virtue and moral character, as exemplified by Socratic and Confucian typologies. It is related as well to the major themes of the modern Western ethical agenda: liberty, utility, and distributive justice Deception, sophistry, and pretense are examined alongside issues of transcendence, agency, trust, striving for congruence in values, cooperative action, power, persuasion, and corporate governance to establish the strategic and moral foundations of authentic transformational leadership. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Leadership Quarterly Elsevier

Ethics, character, and authentic transformational leadership behavior

The Leadership Quarterly, Volume 10 (2)

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Publisher
Elsevier
Copyright
Copyright © 1999 Elsevier Science Inc.
ISSN
1048-9843
DOI
10.1016/S1048-9843(99)00016-8
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The morality of transformational leadership has been sharply questioned, particularly by libertarians, “grass roots” theorists, and organizational development consultants. This paper argues that to be truly transformational, leadership must be grounded in moral foundations. The four components of authentic transformational leadership (idealized influence, inspirational motivation, intellectual stimulation, and individualized consideration) are contrasted with their counterfeits in dissembling pseudo -transformational leadership on the basis of (1) the moral character of the leaders and their concerns for self and others; (2) the ethical values embedded in the leaders' vision, articulation, and program, which followers can embrace or reject; and (3) the morality of the processes of social ethical choices and action in which the leaders and followers engage and collectively pursue. The literature on transformational leadership is linked to the long-standing literature on virtue and moral character, as exemplified by Socratic and Confucian typologies. It is related as well to the major themes of the modern Western ethical agenda: liberty, utility, and distributive justice Deception, sophistry, and pretense are examined alongside issues of transcendence, agency, trust, striving for congruence in values, cooperative action, power, persuasion, and corporate governance to establish the strategic and moral foundations of authentic transformational leadership.

Journal

The Leadership QuarterlyElsevier

References

  • Ultimate criteria of organizational worth
    Bass, B.M.
  • The leaderless group discussion
    Bass, B.M.
  • The ethics of transformational leadership
    Bass, B.M.
  • Perspectives on leadership
    Fairholm, G.W.
  • Trust
    Hosmer, L.T.
  • Chinese philosophy
    Lin, T.; Rosemont, H.; Ames, R.T.
  • Effective correlates of transformational and transactional leadership
    Lowe, K.; Kroeck, K.G.; Sivasubrahmanian, N.
  • Charismatic leaders and destructiveness
    O'Connor, J.O.; Mumford, M.D.; Clifton, T.C.; Gessner, T.L.; Connelly, M.S.
  • The charismatic leader as narcissist
    Sankowsky, D.
  • Social distance and charisma
    Shamir, B.

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