7 Must Have Transformational Leadership Qualities


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Today, more than ever, we need courageous leaders who empower others to reach heights they never thought possible. We need our leaders to expand their capabilities and move outside of the transactional space and into a transformational space that focuses on long term solutions rather than short term gains.

Transformational leadership – growing beyond transactional leadership

Developing your leadership capacity is moving beyond focusing on the day to day operations and expanding your decision making process to focus on long term strategies that are able to sustain business over time.

Leaders need to focus on developing a transformational leadership style that creates positive change and growth. This begins with the goals and vision that are set by leaders and their ability to clearly communicate them to their team in a way that inspires them to buy in.

7 must have transformational leadership qualities

In order to get your team to buy in and be part of your vision for the company, there are certain qualities you must possess to be a transformational leader:

  1. A clear vision:
    Transformational leaders have a vision of what they want to achieve and the ability to clearly communicate this vision so that everyone in the organization understands what is needed to achieve this vision. Is your vision clear? Does it need to be refined?
  2. Courage:
    An effective leader needs courage; a willingness to take on new challenges, take calculated risks, make tough decisions, and be willing to go out on a limb for something they believe in. Transformational leaders have the courage to create a vision and make the difficult decision necessary to achieve their vision.
  3. Self-motivation:
    Leaders need to fuel their passion from within. Transformational leaders have passion and motivation that people can sense and feed off of it. Are you passionate about your vision and willing to do the hard work needed to see your vision achieved?
  4. Inspiration:
    Transformational leaders, based on their personal passion, have the ability to inspire others and get them to buy into their vision and execute it on all levels of the company. How do you inspire your people to create change? Are you effective at motivating and inspiring your team?
  5. Know your people:
    Personal interaction is important. The impact of a simple “hello” in the hallway or conversation in the lobby goes a long way into getting people to feel important and want to be part of the vision a leader has created for the company.  You have the ability to impact each of your team on a personal level. When was the last time you took the time to listen to your team and get to know them as individuals?
  6. Set a company standard:
    Transformational leaders model a company standard they expect everyone to follow. They clearly communicate their vision, expectations, and how this standard is to be carried out throughout the organization. What is your company standard? What standard are you setting by example?
  7. Follow through:
    While it is a bit cliché, actions do speak louder than words — and when leaders live according to the standard they set, people take notice. Leaders often promise a lot, but it is the follow through that has a true impact on a leader’s ability to evoke change and get buy in. How do you follow through and ensure your standards are met?

Tips for becoming a transformational leader

Leaders cannot just decide to become a transformational leader. However, they can work on developing transformational leadership by implementing these tips:

  • Craft your vision and make it the focal point of the company
  • Solicit input from your senior team to ensure your vision can be spread throughout the company
  • Have a process in place that allows your frontline workers to ask questions and get clarification
  • Be clear and communicate the importance that each person plays in the execution of your vision for the company
  • Create actionable steps that align with your vision that can be easily executed by everyone in the organization
  • Understand what is needed to motivate and inspire people to buy in and become part of your vision

When leaders openly accept a transformational style they move beyond day to day functions and operate at a higher level that is focused on creating change in people and culture that will lead to innovation and growth.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Bill Hogg
Bill Hogg works with senior leaders to inspire and develop high performance, customer-focused teams that deliver exceptional customer service, higher productivity and improved profits. Sought after internationally as a speaker and consultant, Bill is recognized as the Performance Excelerator because of his uncanny ability to create profound change and deliver extraordinary results with the most demanding organizations.


  1. These are all important. I’d suggest that there’s an eighth: Purpose. Translation: Be aware of who you’re serving, and to what end. If the goal is optimal customer centricity, a significant objective for any enterprise, then the needs and priorities of all stakeholders – employees, current and former customers, prospects, the general public, the financial community, vendors, etc. – must be taken into consideration on an ongoing basis.

  2. Michael, I agree that purpose is essential. It should be foundational to why we do what we do — otherwise we are simply executing a series of tasks. Some might feel that your purpose is embedded in your vision, but it is always worth noting. Thanks for the comment.

  3. Amongst all the transformational leadership qualities, I would like to harp on the importance of ‘Follow through’. This is very critical and has a heavy impact on a leader’s power to inspire. It is important for a leader to ‘WALK THE TALK’. For whatever reason the leader is unable to do whatever she promised to do, it is essential that her team and her senior leaders are made aware of the delay, obstructions if any, stage etc of the issue promised much before the close of timeline.


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