Investigating the relationship between transformational leadership style and organisational effectiveness

Malherbe, Johann (2008-12)

Thesis (MBA (Business Management))--Stellenbosch University, 2008.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The pace of globalisation and the continuous advance in technology have created an ever-changing business environment, which is making it increasingly difficult for organisations to remain competitive. To the world community globalisation has been a gradual process, whereas its impact in South Africa was more pronounced and happened over a shorter period. This was due to the re-admission of South Africa to the international community after the 1994 elections. In addition, leaders in this new global economy are facing new, complex challenges associated with the everchanging business environment, and the depth and quality of the leadership that they provide are critical to the success of organisations. It was within this context that this research study was conceived. More specifically, the author became interested in the type of leadership behaviours, practices and characteristics that are essential to lead an organisation in the new global economy. During the last two decades, an increasing number of researchers began to report on a 'new' style of leadership based on innovation, continuous learning, constant renewal and entrepreneurship. This leadership style challenges traditional views on work among employees, creates a new vision and motivates workers to perform above expectation. These leaders have recognised the need for revitalisation and they bring about change within their organisations to meet the challenges of the current, ever-changing environment. This 'new' leadership style is transformational leadership, which has been extensively reported on. Literature abounds with studies on transformational leadership and its impact on organisational effectiveness. It is one of the most extensively researched leadership paradigms to date and is still evolving. This dissertation reviews the development of leadership theory and the paradigm shifts that have led to the development of transformational leadership theory. Furthermore, the author interviewed experienced leaders from Naspers to practically identify essential leadership requirements within a South African multinational organisation. The primary research findings indicate that there are parallels between essential leadership behaviours and characteristics, as identified by the present study, and transformational leadership behaviours and characteristics. The study indicates that some of the successes of the researched organisation could be attributed to the transformational leadership practices that it has employed. It can also be inferred that, should these characteristics and behaviours be nurtured in other leaders and organisations in general, these organisations could become more effective, competitive and growth-orientated in the current organisational landscape.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die tempo van globalisering en die volgehoue vordering in tegnologie, het 'n heeltydse veranderende besigheids omgewing teweeggebring, wat dit moeilik maak vir organisasies om kompeterend te bly. Die proses van globalisering was 'n geleidelike proses vir die wereld gemeenskap, maar die effek op Suid-Afrika was meer dramaties. Dit is as gevolg van Suid Afrika se hertoelating tot die wereld ekonomie, na die 1994 verkiesings. Die nuwe wereld ekonomie en veranderende besigheids omgewing stel oak addisionele vereistes en uitdagings aan leiers en die diepte en kwaliteit van hulle leierskap is krities tot die sukses van hul organisasie. Dit was binne die konteks wat die navorsing studie gebore was. Meer spesifiek, die skrywer was geinteresseerd in die tipe leierskap style, praktyke en eienskappe wat krities is om organisasies te lei in the nuwe wereld ekonomie. Gedurende die laaste twee dekades, het 'n groeiende hoeveelheid navorsers begin verslag doen oor 'n 'nuwe' leierskap styl, gebasseer op innovasie, volgehoue studie, konstante vernuwing en entrepreneurskap. Die leierskap styl daag die tradisionele siening van werknemers t.o.v. hulle werk uit, dit skep nuwe visies en motiveer werknemers om bo verwagting te presteer. Die tipe leiers het die nodigheid raak gesien vir vernuwing en hulle bring verandering binne organisasies aan om die uitdagings van die nuwe omgewing te bowe te kom. Die 'nuwe' leierskap styl is transformasie leierskap. Daar is al ekstensief verslag gedoen oor die styl en daar is 'n oorvloed van literatuur beskikbaar oor transformasie leierskap en die impak daarvan op die effektiwiteit van organisasies. Sover is dit een van die mees nagevorsde leierskap paradigmas. Die studie hersien die ontwikkeling van leierskap teorie en die verskuiwing in paradigmas wat gelei het tot die ontwikkeling van transformasie leierskap teorie. Die skrywer het ook onderhoude gevoer met ervare leiers van Naspers, om prakties uit te vind wat se leierskap benaderings en eienskappe nodig is binne Suid-Afrikaanse multi-nasionale organisasies. Die primere resultate van die studie het gewys dat daar ooreenkomste is tussen die leierskap benadering en eienskappe van die huidige studie en die van transformasie leierskap. Die studie wys ook dat die sukses van Naspers gedeeltelik toegestaan kan word aan die transformasie leierskap praktyke wat toegepas is binne die organisasie. Verder kan dit ook afgelei word dat as die praktyke en eienskappe toegepas word op ander leiers in ander oranisasies, kan hulle ook meer effektief, kompeterend en groei georienteerd wees in die huidige organisatoriese landskap.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/5534
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