Transformational Leadership in Practice Essay

Submitted By SaikatG1
Words: 307
Pages: 2

Transformational Leadership in practice In my teaching, I often cite examples of transformational leaders, none more inspiring than Nelson Mandela. Mandela characterizes the four transformational leadership behaviours. He used his moral authority to inspire a nation to rise above its terrible history, to attain heights most did not think possible. His ideal was of a non-racial society, and he spent his life creating opportunities to show all South Africans that they could achieve it. In a sense, as one commentator said, “Mandela was deliberately constructing himself as the embodiment of an ideal he wanted all South Africans to follow.”
But how did he do it? “He would pick up the phone and call them on their birthdays. He would go to family funerals. He saw it as an opportunity. When Mandela emerged from prison, he famously included his jailers among his friends and put leaders who had kept him in prison in his first Cabinet. ‘Yet I well knew that he despised these men’,” said Cyril Ramaphosa, a colleague of Mandela’s, in a 2008 interview with Richard Stengel of Time magazine. Why would Mandela do this after suffering through all the years of apartheid? Because wonderful leaders know that they are not there just to fulfill their short term needs (for revenge), but to elevate others. And they know that leadership is not about helping those who already love you to love you more
– it’s about convincing those who doubt you that you can be trusted.
So what have I…