Transformational Leadership Style ISTJ Term Paper

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Transformational Leadership Style type, ISTJ enhances or hinders leadership effectiveness while working as a team. An observer defines leadership as follows: "Leadership is a process by which a person influences others to accomplish an objective and directs the organization in a way that makes it more cohesive and coherent." (Donald Clark, 1997)

Transformational leadership stems from George MacGregor Burns (1978) Model of Moral, Transaction & Transformational Leaders. According to Burns an amoral leader cannot be a true leader. In this way he creates dichotomy of morality in leaderships. While a moral leader is a real leader in Burns' eyes an amoral leader is one who exhibits naked power coercion like fascists and dictators and hence viable of becoming infamous. He goes further to classify a moral leader into Transactional and Transformational Leaderships.

Moral Transactional and Transformational leaderships only differ in their set of peculiar model values. While transactional leadership follows the doctrines of honesty, responsibility, fairness and honoring of ones pledges, Transitional leadership believes in Liberty, Justice, Equality and Collective well-being (Burns). Of the sixteen types of Transitional leadership, ISTJ OR the Introvert Sensing Thinking Judging Type is considered to be the most responsible and reliable one.


According to Burns Theory (1978):

"A Transformational Leader recognizes and exploits an existing need or demand of a potential follower, scrutinizes the potentials in his followers, seeks to satisfy higher needs and engages the full persona of the follower."

For Burns the aim of transformational leader is to "deal with leadership as distinct from mere power-holding and as the opposite of brute power" (Burns, 1978, Burns Theory Publication, p.4). In this way a transformational leader seeks to develop a relationship not entirely based on power, but also on mutual needs, higher values and aspirations.

In order to inspire a worker into higher levels of teamwork, there are certain things a leader must be, know and do. Leaders therefore are not resting on their laurels. leadership, as initiated by the Burns theory can only be carried out by applying noble attributes of beliefs, values, ethics, character, knowledge and skills. In this way leadership becomes something that one develops and renovates continuously through constant self-analysis, education, training and experience. This is the only way to improve their leadership skills.

However, Bass's theory (1989 & 1990) slightly differs from that of Burns with regard to transformational leadership. He lists three basic ways of how people become leaders. According to him some personality traits may lead people naturally into assuming leadership roles. This, he calls The Trait Theory. Secondly, adverse circumstances or a critical event may cause a person to take charge, which brings out extraordinary leadership qualities in an ordinary person. This is called the Great Events Theory. Thirdly when people strive to develop leadership qualities, they can become leaders. This he names Transformational Leadership.

Transformational leadership is based on the assumption that association with a higher moral position is motivating and will result in people following a leader who promotes it and also that, collaborated efforts are far more productive than those done individually. Hence Transformational leadership is a process where leaders and followers engage in a mutual process of helping one another in mounting up a staircase to an elevated position in morality and motivation. Hence these leaders are highly idealistic and value oriented.


ISTJ or Introvert Sensing Thinking Judging Type of transformational leadership is perhaps the finest and most efficient type of leadership trait among the sixteen other variations of transformational leaderships. An ISTJ leader believes in the potential of teamwork rather than his own skills and qualities and works to motivate and navigate his followers towards high goals and aspirations with his undaunted courage and passion. His qualities of character inspire his followers to work just as diligently and embrace his aims as their own. Moreover, it is believed that no other type is more driven by responsibility or the phrase "bottom line" as much as an ISTJ thus explaining how their goals are strictly entwined in a time frame. People who fall under this category are though workaholics, and introverts but they still lead a life of an apparent extravert owing to their leadership qualities. As an added premium to their responsible nature, these people acquire social grace, facility with words, present ability and all other sorts of interpersonal skills demanded at any given moment. Their peculiar sensing nature is shaped by how they percept information. They focus to different situations with greater depth as they contemplate inwardly concentrating on objectivity, immediacy, concreteness and pragmatism. This eliminates a clout of assumptions and self-conclusions and displays things in a liquid-crystal picture before them. Hence confusions based on self-deductions are minimized and nothing is taken for granted on the other hand. Their tangible and objective approach to problems helps them immediately organize and schedule their steps to work on in order to fulfill a certain task.

To them the basis of good leadership is honorable character and selfless service to their ends, aims or organization. To a follower, leadership is everything they do that effects the organization's objectives and their well being. Leaders on the other hand, are required to concentrate on what their capabilities, beliefs and character. For instance they should rely and inspire their co-workers/followers with their abilities as a physicist, their belief in seeing their organization soaring new heights, and their character of selfless, and diligent efforts, honesty and mutual welfare.

Professions with practical and tangible results appeal to the ISTJs such as surgery, law and accounting. Since all the mentioned professions involve working alone, fulfilling their (I) trait of introversion, also these professions are very result oriented appealing their sensibility of a tangible outcome, and require objective thinking (T) and follow a prescribed way of doing things (J).

Owing to the above personality traits ISTJs useful and important part of any organization they run or are associated with. As a member of work environment, they put through their experiences and knowledge of the facts to make decisions. Hence their decisions are pertinent, practical, pragmatic and sound. They dwell on their reliability, stability and consistency in performance in order to lead or inspire their co-workers or followers. Moreover, they would never be the ones to propose radical approaches or out do traditional and hierarchical ones. In fact they hold a great regard for long-established and conventional approaches. They also reward those who follow the rules in getting the job done. Pay attention to immediate and practical organizational needs. Therefore they are a valuable contribution to any organization.

However the same persona harbors some elements that deter the functionality of teamwork within a work environment. As they are almost finicky about object oriented thinking, they expect others to consider things just the way they do, failing to grasp a different view-of-point owing to difference in reference point or assumptions other might have regarding a particular issue. This results in failure on part of the whole unit, to be able to coherently follow their objectives. Since pragmatism and observation with no-strings-attached comes easily and naturally to them they expect similar behavior of virtually everyone else. These makes them extremely demanding both at home and work, and makes them tensed if someone resists the set of ideals and that they rules they follow. Some observers classify ISTJs as classic type A personalities -- driven, impatient and obsessive.

They may also overlook implications that might occur in the long run while being deeply indulged in day-to-day affairs. They may also neglect interpersonal niceties or minute details of an issue owing to their broad-based vision. On failure of someone grasping their point-of-view or failing to understand them they may get disturbed and impatient. If someone resists the rules set and followed by them, they may also get…[continue]

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