When faced with unprecedented challenges, how does a leader thrive? This is a question that Dr. Patricia Anderson, one of the country’s visionary thought leaders on transformational leadership, tackles in ‘Transformational Leadership: Lead, Learn, Level Up!”
In this workshop, Dr. Anderson places emphasis on how the transactional leadership approach may not be as effective as it once was. There is now a need for it to transform into something that puts a premium on empowering and inspiring stakeholders to think and act in ways that not only affects the present but also considers the future.
“When there’s disruption, there has to be elasticity in leadership. It can’t be this is what we’ve always done, let’s continue doing it,” Dr. Anderson stated in one of her sessions. “You have to make room to address the crisis and the disruption in innovative, collaborative, and creative ways.”
Authentic Transformational Leadership playbook
In her immersive program, Dr. Anderson talks about futureproofing one’s leadership, especially during times of uncertainty. Her study on Authentic Transformational Leadership Behavior (ATL) is redefined through a playbook that discusses the four fundamental behaviors of authentic transformational leaders: inspirational motivation, idealized influence, individual consideration, and intellectual stimulation.
In both individual consideration and intellectual stimulation practices, leaders focus on seeing employees and team members beyond their responsibilities at work. They dial up on empathy-based, people-oriented leadership while dialing down on task-oriented leadership. Authentic transformational leaders also engage followers by giving them room to think more critically and look for opportunities to engage them in problem solving by furthering innovative practices such as corporate entrepreneurship, for example.
On the other hand, inspirational motivation and idealized influence are practiced by leaders during challenging times. They function as role models and demonstrate “walking the talk” to galvanize their stakeholders, while influencing both current and future leaders.
Virtual leadership is one of the topics Dr. Anderson focuses on in her sessions. The future of many jobs and offices is either remote or hybrid. Virtual leadership may be a challenge for those who are accustomed to a more traditional working or leadership style, however authentic transformational leaders are proficient at navigating uncertainty and maximizing adoption to future states.
Dr. Anderson also discusses the importance of employee upskilling. Authentic transformational leaders advance their employees’ learning. Employee upskilling represents a smaller investment than hiring new workers, and it also boosts the current employees’ morale. Giving employees the opportunity to learn new skills and to grow within the company will drive employee engagement, productivity, and loyalty to both the leader and the organization.