Transactional Leadership Is Sometimes Referred To As Managerial Leadership

When it comes to leadership theories and types of leadership, transactional leadership is my least favorite of them all. Can they get results? Yes! Will they sustain those results? Maybe or maybe not!

This type of leadership depends heavily on results! That by itself is not necessarily a bad thing; however, the way in which they get those results is. At least in my opinion it is bad!

Transactional leadership, also referred to as managerial leadership, uses a system of rewards and punishment to achieve their results. The old carrot on a stick theory or hammer over the head! Do well you get the carrot! Do poorly you get the hammer on the head!

Many parents use this type of parenting with their children and it develops them into a person that is motivated by one thing and that is what is going to be my reward. In other words they don’t do things because it is the right thing to do. They do things because they will either receive a reward or get in trouble. Much like having a speed limit sign in the middle of nowhere. The person that has been raised under the transactional leadership theory will have a radar detector in their car. If a police officer is around they will slow down. If not they will drive as fast as possible!

This style of leadership does not promote the idea of team or to act for the greater good! It promotes the idea of self-satisfaction! As long as it is good for me I don’t care what else happens. In fact if I don’t benefit who cares!

One of the reasons it is also referred to as managerial leadership is that this style of leadership seems to work for accomplishing immediate tasks or routine ones. In a factory where an employee is performing the same task over and over again someone using this leadership theory may offer a reward for putting out so many widgets per day. On the other hand if they don’t put out enough widgets they may be in trouble. Again, the carrot and hammer. In this type of situation the employee will only focus on their immediate task. The world could be collapsing around them; however, unless it affects them personally they will keep working. No teamwork at all!

This is the main reason I am not in favor of the transactional leadership style! In many ways it dehumanizes your staff. This by itself will create an environment that promotes stabbing people in the back! I will create an environment where employees will crawl over someone’s back to be recognized and not turn around to help them up.

If you are considering developing this style of leadership I would highly recommend that you don’t unless you are only concerned with the short term results.

Thank you and May GOD Bless You!

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