As I continue my weeks interning at Lowe, Brockenbrough & Company, I am able to recognize where particular theories talked about in Theories and Models can be applied to a business setting. For the purpose of this response, I am going to discuss the ways in which I have experiencing James MacGregor Burns’ Transforming leadership theory within the culture at LBC. The theory of transforming leadership presents the scenario of leader and followers working together to engage and raise their levels of motivation and morality. This element of leaders and followers engaging with one another is prevalent at LBC which is why I was drawn to discussing this theory. When analyzing transforming leadership, it is important to also take a look at transactional leadership and recognize the differences. According to Burns’ theory, transactional leadership occurs when one-person contacts another in order to exchange valuable things, but for no other reasoning. In other words, this is simply a bargaining process. After only three weeks at this firm, it is incredibly clear that the client’s best interest is of upmost importance to the employees and they value the relationship building elements that the transforming leadership theory encompasses.
In order to apply this theory to LBC itself, I believe that their ability to embody transforming leadership can help to surmount problems or challenges that occur within the firm. In other words, when faced with a problem, there is a level of trust and support that occurs with the emphasis of transforming leadership. For instance, when a younger member seeks out help from a more senior leader, the two will work together to engage and raise their levels of motivation and morality. I find that thinning the gap between leader and follower allows for leadership to be a common term in every employee’s vernacular. What I mean by this, is that limiting the hierarchical structure that emerges with senior titles, every member of the company is able to excel in their respected field and to practice leadership.
Furthermore, as I thought more about this theory and applied it to the culture at LBC, I concluded that this theory represents the foundation upon which this company is built. Their entire focus is shaped around meeting the client’s needs. The way senior leaders and younger members of the company intermingle emphasizes the importance of transforming leadership. The more I am exposed to the environment at LBC, the more I am realizing that this sort of leadership helps welcome various perspectives to a situation that can help every party grow to find success.