As our General Elections inches closer to the showdown of August 10, Trinidad and Tobago must take a time out of assessing and evaluating. It is expected that there would be a desire for change.
Be it change of symbol of the administration or change in the faces of the administration, but the change is inevitable.
A significant aspect of this approaching change would be Leadership. In my opinion, allow me to present the Leadership that needs to be seen as we move forward to post August 10. Trinidad and Tobago would need to see more Transformational Leadership. If it has been there in the past, it was not as prevalent as it should have been.
As a result we would need to see more Transformational Leadership than Transactional Leadership. We would need to be brutally honest with ourselves and assess the past performances of all the teams and through our Diagnostics and Evaluations arrive at our synopsis. We must take into consideration that Transformational Leadership focuses on the People and Transactional Leadership focusses on the project.
Although quite effective, there comes a time in our “development curve” as a country that there is a need for a pre-dominance of one over the other. That time is upon us.
Transformational leadership is a leadership approach that causes change in individuals and social systems. In its ideal form, it creates valuable and positive change in the citizens with the end goal of developing people into leaders. Enacted in its authentic form, the transformational leadership we would like to see would enhance the motivation, morale and performance of people through a variety of mechanisms.
These must include connecting the sense of identity and self to the mission and the collective identity of the organisation or country. The Transformational Leader must be a role model for the citizens and inspire them; challenging the people to take greater ownership for nationalism and their work, and understanding the strengths and weaknesses and the needs of the masses, so the leader can align strategy with tasks and objectives that optimise performance.
Burns (1978) states that the extent to which a leader is transformational, is measured first, in terms of his influence on the followers. Therefore we as the followers, we as the citizens under such leadership must feel trust, admiration, and loyalty and respect for the leader and because of the qualities of the transformational leader, we must be willing to work harder than originally expected.
These outcomes occur because the transformational leader offers followers something more than just working for self-gain; he or she must provide the people with an inspiring mission and vision and give them an identity.
Are the Leaders who are promenading before us reflecting the ability to transform and motivate the masses through his or her idealised influence or charisma, intellectual stimulation and individual consideration?
In addition, are they encouraging the masses to come up with new and unique ways to challenge the status quo and to alter the environment to support development and national efficiency?
We as the followers must assess meticulously and let good sense prevail.