Leading through Relationships: The Positive Effects of Transformational Leaders in Academic Libraries
Transformational leaders have a positive effect on organizations, but they also personally affect those in the organization. Transformational leadership is highly correlated with effective organizations, yet few studies of transformational leadership exist in the library literature. The purpose of this IRB approved study was to investigate the beneficial relationship between transformational leaders and followers. The study used a qualitative approach because it best allows librarians to tell their own stories of working with a transformational leader. All names used are pseudonyms. The three transformational leaders discussed all used the Four Is – idealized influence, individualized consideration, intellectual stimulation, and inspirational motivation – to varying degrees, and the overarching theme is the personal relationships these transformational leaders were able to build. Interview one was with Steve library dean at a medium-sized Midwestern university. The transformational leader he talked about was Frank and what a great mentor he was. Interview two was with Chelsea a library department head at a large West Coast research university. She spoke about her current supervisor Beverly who is transformational because she uses an inclusive decision making style, builds relationships with people, and has a strong vision. Interview three was with Gabrielle library dean at a large Southern state university. The transformational leader she spoke about was Nick, who is transformational because he cares about people and freely gives of himself to help others. By attending this session, attendees will learn about the importance of personal relationships in leadership and the ways those relationships can manifest themselves.
Martin, J. (2017). Personal Relationships and Professional Results: The Positive Impact of Transformational Leaders on Academic Librarians. Journal of Academic Librarianship 43(2), 108-115.
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