Are You a Transactional or Transformational Leader?

Because awareness is so important to successful leaders, let’s find out if you’re a transactional or transformational leader. This is a quick self-assessment, and there are no wrong answers.

 1 – How well do you know your team?

A.      I don’t much about what they want out of their careers, and I don’t know anything about their personal lives.

B.      I think I know what they want out of their career, and I know something personal about each team member.

C.      I know what each person wants out of their career, and I have met or know about their families and personal lives.


2 – How often do you conduct a performance review?

A.      I can’t remember the last time I did one.

B.      I do them when I can.

C.      It’s a set date on my calendar, and I never miss them.


3 – If a direct report is facing a challenge, how often do they come to you first?

A.      I’m always the last to hear.

B.      I know they come to me, but I’m not sure I’m always the first person.

C.      I am the first person they come to every time.


If you answered all A’s, you’re a transactional leader. That means you’re more focused on completing tasks to get results.

If you answered all C’s, you’re probably well on your way to being a transformational leader. You believe results are achieved through your people. You are very interested in understanding them, what motivates them and how you can help them grow and develop professionally.

If you answered all B’s – or a mix of A’s, B’s and C’s – you are a mix of transactional and transformational. Sometimes you focus completely on results, and sometimes you focus more on developing your people.

Research shows that transformational leaders are more effective. Transformational leaders motivate their workforce; improve innovation, learning and creativity, and increase productivity. In this day and age, companies must be as productive as possible. A transactional approach won’t get you here.

If you want to learn more about how to become more of a transformational leader, reach out. I can do a 360 assessment with you, and help you transition from one leadership style to the other.