How do I become a transformational leader?
Henna Inam answered this question this past weekend at the latest OPEN event held at Technology Parkway.
As a speaker, coach, consultant and the CEO of Tranformational Leadership Inc., Inam’s mission is to help women work towards becoming transformational leaders and generating growth and engagement in their teams and workplaces.
So what is transformational leadership? This form of leadership encompasses a few simple, but key traits:
Inspirational: As the workers should be motivated to find new methods to achieve their goals. Mobilization: As the leader should be able to mobilize the group of people to accomplish the tasks at hand. Morale: As the leader should be able to improve the overall wellbeing of the group, as well as boost and maintain a healthy level of motivation.
Many of us may already call ourselves transformational leaders as we lead teams, projects, or mentor others on a day-to-basis; But how do we take on this role more efficiently? And for others, many may be wondering: what steps do I begin with to become a transformational leader for others? To put it simply, according to Henna Inam, the process begins with a bit of self-assessment.
1. Become Purpose Driven: Inam emphasized the difference in usage of the empathic vs. the analytical parts of the brain. The analytical brain is task focused, determined to keep tasks moving forward and then accomplishing them. The empathic brain lights up when there is an engaging conversation happening between two people and is perceived to be the more ethical side of the brain. However, she highlighted, the brain that cares for others, the one that is relational and connective, is not the one we spend most of our time on in our workplaces.
So how do we engage this side of the brain more often? At this point, the audience was told to turn to the one seated beside them and share a moment of inspiration, while their partner was told to simply listen. The purpose of this activity was to inspire others to tap into the empathic side of the brain, as a leader would, to inspire change in their sphere of influence.
2. Grow Others:
Here, the audience paused to contemplate on whether they’d shared an appreciation with a colleague in the few days leading up to the event. They then turned to the person that previously shared their story of a moment of inspiration, and were encouraged to acknowledge and appreciate the words that were shared. Inam highlighted the power of simply acknowledging others, and therefore being able to grow them by helping them see their own potential.
3. Inspire Curiosity:
A few of these open-ended and simple questions may help you to do this effectively by encouraging someone to be curious of themselves. - What does success look like to you? - What energizes you? - What’s important to you? - What do you value
4. Role Model Integrity: Transformational leaders, in terms of their own integrity, set an example for others by knowing and remaining true to their values, and therefore serve as a source of inspiration.
From events like these, the Muslim community and its leaders can benefit from topics such as this one to work towards engaging more of its members and maintaining a more effective, rewarding, and beneficial relationship those they work with.