Transformational and Transactional Leadership: An Examination of Managerial Cognition Among Spanish Upper Echelons
24 Pages Posted: 19 Sep 2007
Date Written: March 30, 2006
Transformational leadership predicts follower's satisfaction and performance beyond traditional forms of leadership. However, little is known about the beliefs system associated with transformational leaders. Taking a cognitive perspective, we examined how the managerial beliefs that executives hold about their followers relate to their perceived leadership style among a sample of 76 Presidents and CEO´s of Spain largest firms. The results support the idea that executives with a learning orientation are more likely to report a transformational leadership style; whereas executives with a performance goal orientation are more likely to report a transactional leadership style. We also found that self-rated transformational leaders hold stronger Theory Y beliefs than self-rated transactional leaders. Furthermore, we found that these mental associations are held to a stronger degree for executives with graduate degrees of formal education. These results are discussed in terms of their significance for transformational leadership theory and leadership development.
Keywords: Transformational Leadership, Managerial Cognition, Goal orientation, Theory Y
JEL Classification: L2, M5
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