Leveraging transformational and transactional leadership to cultivate the generation of organization-focused ideas
Keywords:Transformational leadership, Transactional leadership, Leader organizational identification, Organization-focused idea generation, Multi-level
We investigate how transformational and transactional leadership motivates employees to commit to an organizational ideation program so that they subsequently generate ideas that benefit the organization. To resolve the mixed and contradictory findings of earlier studies about these leadership styles, we propose that more attention needs to be devoted to the leader's personal beliefs. Specifically, we study the degree to which a leader identifies with an organization and how this possibly unlocks the effects of transformational or transactional leadership. Using multilevel data collected in a large multinational company, our findings reveal that both transformational and transactional leadership is effective in motivating followers to commit to the goals of an ideation program. Increased commitment, in turn, is associated with more ideas that followers generate. In contrast to the effect of transactional leadership, however, the effect of transformational leadership is contingent on how strongly leaders identify with the organization.