Transformational leadership is most
often compared to transactional leadership. A transactional leader values order
and structure. They are not a good fit for places where creativity and
innovative ideas are valued. By contrast, transformational leadership chooses
to influence, motivate and inspire workers rather than direct others.
Leadership is an influence processes. Leaders with different leadership styles
will show different influence processes to impact their company.
and influence become so vital to leaders. Power is the ability to influence
others (French & Raven, 1959). Influence is the capacity to have an effect
on other people’s behaviors. Both power and influence represent core activities
of leaders, that is involving getting things done through other people (Yukl,
is defined as a process of influencing. These influencing processes includes influencing
the task objectives and strategies of an organization, influencing people in
the organization to implement the strategies and achieve the objectives,
influencing the group maintenance and identification, and influencing the
culture of the organization (Yukl and Van Fleet, 1992).
Role of influence
Prize-winning political scientist Burns is widely credited as the catalyst for
contemporary leadership theory. In his 1978 book, Leadership, Burns suggested that any positional leader should be
responsible to develop followers into leader themselves. It is clear that organizations
needed to be leader-full, not leader-led. He also suggested that each person
should be engaged in relational and collaborative process, regardless of role.
conventional views, contemporary views define influence not only as the power
to affect others, but as a mutual influence. Leaders not only influence
followers but they are also influenced by followers. Mutual influence leads to
empowerment where the power is shared within subordinates.
Types of influence processes
Direct decisions: Leaders have a direct relationship
with management that allows them to determine the organization’s structure and
culture, shaping strategy, and dictating decision making through the people
they influence. Leaders have control of the vision and mission of the
organization. This ability allows them to shape the choices of their followers (Nahavandi,
Allocation of resources: Leaders have the ability to
allocate organization’s resources (i.e. human technology, money, etc.) to both
individuals and organizational units (Nahavandi, 2006).
Reward systems: This process has a significant impact
on the culture of an organization and its employees (Nahavandi, 2006). This behavior
is familiar in the form of monetary incentives when followers adhere to
specific behavioral standards and/ or achieve goals that reflect the mission of
Selection and promotion of other
leaders: Leaders who
naturally fit and adhere well into an organization’s mission and culture are
more likely to be selected and promoted to top leadership positions, as well as
meet individual goals and objectives (Nahavandi, 2006).
Role modeling: A leader who is passionate about
customer service will focus on this passion in information that is transferred
to his or her employees. In terms of ethics, this process can be shown on how a
leader communicates and expects employees to behave. This might be communicated
through the vision and/ or mission or through regular communication to
employees (Nahavandi, 2006). By utilizing these influence processes, upper
echelon leaders essentially create a mirror image of their own personal style,
values, preferences and experience.
Every leadership style has different influence processes.
Writer chose two different CEO with contrast leadership styles. This allows
writer to compare two different influence processes of the two different
leadership skills used by leaders.
Andrea Jung had been the CEO of Avon
Corporation for twelve years. She was known for her transformational leadership
style. On the other side, Howard Schultz was the founder and the Chief
Executive Officer of Starbucks Corporation. He was known for his transactional
Influence process analysis
Andrea Jung (CEO of Avon
Direct decisions: Andrea Jung has taken numerous
successful decisions for Avon Corporation. She emphasized the importance of sales
force, especially on online sales. Andrea Jung changed Avon’s previous focus
from the 30-55 year old women to 16-24 year old women with the consideration
that this segment has more purchasing power than the previous segment. She also
decided to eliminate seven layers of management and got rid of 25% of the
Allocation of resources: She believed that allocating huge
budget for the Research and Development would give off higher benefits in
return. Her decision to invest in R paid off when the company’s sales
increased by 45% in 2004.
Reward system: Avon Corporation rewarded its top
sales representatives with paid holiday trips.
Selection and promotion of other
leaders: Andrea Jung was
the first woman CEO in Avon Corporation, there were no women in middle
management at that time. Now 74% of Avon’s managers and executives in the U.S.
Role modeling: Her managerial and leadership style
is an inspiration for female leaders. She is passionate, courageous, and full
Howard Schultz (CEO of Starbucks
Direct decisions: Schultz had made some decisions
after he returned to be the CEO of Starbucks Corporation. He temporarily closed
all U.S. stores to re-train employees to make an espresso. Under his lead,
Starbucks debuted the legendary rewards card for loyal customers. The company decided to close 600
under-performing US stores in early 2009.
Allocation of resources: Starbucks
Corporation allocate its money more on training its people. Employees are well
trained in dealing with customers in order to maintain the quality and
consistency. But the long term effects on these obedience employees are lower
task satisfaction, lost of trust and commitment, and drains of physical and emotional
energy. Reward system: Insurance
coverage is eligible for all employees after being paid 60 hours. Starbucks comprehensive benefits
package includes: medical, dental, vision and short-term disability insurance, paid
vacation and holiday, mental health/chemical dependency benefits, a 401k savings
plan and a stock option plan (Starbucks Coffee Company, 2012).
Role modeling: The present CEO, Kevin Johnson
admitted that he’s a fan of Howard Schultz. He had worked for the company for
seven years before he became the CEO, and had his office connected to Howard’s
office. They visited each other’s office often.
Influence processes used
Direct decisions: This process is used to shape
company’s structure and culture through the people leaders influence.
Allocation of resources: Companies allocate
their resources differently, it depends on the needs and wants of the company. For
example, allocating resources to a division that needs to be stronger. Vision
and mission represent the company’s wants. Allocating resources can be based on
company’s vision and mission.
Reward system: This influence process is believed
to motivate employees. Motivation drives people to success.
Selection and promotion of other
leaders: Same with previous
influence processes, this process occurs for the sake of company’s mission and
vision. Selection and promotion of new leaders is likely to happen when the
leader fits the company’s structure and culture.
Role modeling: Leaders are people who fit the
company’s culture and structure. Through their behavior, employees can learn
how to fit the company’s structure and culture. This process becomes very
important to shape company’s culture because people tend to follow what others
show, not what others tell.
Strengths and weaknesses
Direct decisions: Direct decision is a fast way to
influence people, but it also closes doors to new perspectives and ideas. It
doesn’t include subordinates to make a decision, it only makes them do the
Allocation of resources: Leaders have to be careful
when allocating resources because this process can make one area stronger but
make others weaker.
Reward system: This process helps motivate
employees to do their job, but it also has some disadvantages. Some of them are
increased business costs, lack of long-term benefit, and motivation issues.
Selection and promotion of other leaders: Company’s culture might be different
between the same companies in different countries influenced by employees’
Role modeling: Role modeling can lead followers to
the wrong way. Leaders need to realize that they are mirrors for their
followers and they can not expect different reflection. In facing global
organizations, the impact of this process becomes wider. Leaders are not only
influencing one company, but also influencing followers from other countries.
Summary of key influence process
five influence processes are used by each leader to effect positive
organizational change or to improve performance. Direct decisions, allocation of
resources, reward system, selection and promotion of other leaders, and role
modeling shape the organization’s structure and culture. How leaders use these
influence processes will decide organization’s future.