Nursing Coursework Paper on Transformational Leadership in Mental Health Care

Transformational Leadership in Mental Health Care

Leadership is crucial in shaping employees’ insights, which in turn affects the way they respond to the organizational goals thus influencing their performance and output. A leader in any firm has the consent to manage the in-house and the peripheral surroundings of the institution. This is vital in the firm’s operations and may affect the performance of the institution.

Transactional leadership emphasizes on the values and the standards that the workforce ought to stick to and follow. Bertocci, (2009) called this management by exception. A lot of focus is laid on the bureaucracy authority and the legitimacy held by the institution. The workers are coerced into finishing their tasks and assignments with the leaders strictly looking into the standard level of the employees. The employee’s output along with presentation is highly dependent on conformity to the organizational rewards as well as retributions. Any deviation from the company’s norms is punishable and the performance is measured against the standards that have been set or even the contracts that have been entered into.

Transformational leadership is the type of headship where the person in charge inspires and motivates the subsidiaries with the leader being visionary (Suwannapirom 2005). In this case, the workforce is provoked by an appeal to their highly valued and honest principles. The manager does this while articulating and defining the visualization of the organization. He therefore wins the people’s credibility and favors, which leads to their maximized productivity.

There exists open communication and interaction between the leaders and the other teams, which facilitates clarity of the values, objectives, and mission of the company. In addition, the employees feel appreciated as each of them is treated as an individual and given the attention that they deserve. Majorly, the leaders are evaluated according to the extents that they go in ensuring that they are role models to the junior staff and how well they display solid moral and ethical values in the execution of their mandates.

Transformational leadership is very crucial in health care and especially when dealing with mental health patients. This is because the team members involved in dealing with the patients work effectively under effective leadership, as they will view their work from an elevated perceptive and thus develop proper strategies to deal with their patients (Hood, 2007). This may be including strategies varying from the rehabilitation programs as well as persistent psychological disease.

The leader will mutually interact with the team members and the face to face interactions will make the individuals feel like they belong and thus work effectively while giving their ideas and what they think could be the solutions to their problems (Lloyd, King and Deane 2009). The leaders can maximally use the opportunity to educate their team on the knowledge and skills that maybe dynamically needed to handle each of the patients. The leader will creatively simulate the rehabilitation team to think and develop programs that meet the clientele demands.

The developing of the strategies incorporates team participation in transformational leadership. For example, if the team has to assess and evaluate for the methods that will be used in handling the consumers who have abused drugs, the leader does not impose his chosen techniques on the team members. He will in the contrary ask them to select those they deem fit to execute that job. This will lead to a situation where the recommendations are embraced and accepted by all the team members.

Case Study: Nurse Managers as Transformational and Transactional Leaders

Nurse Managers are likely to be involved in several leadership roles when undertaking their daily routine activities. For instance, nurse managers normally on daily basis coordinate the day/night shift, the work team of nurses, and other support staff under the nurses’ directions, all with the aim of providing improved patient care.  The nurse manager’s leadership skills would be critical in determining the shift’s success operation, the subordinate staff morale or motivation, and the management of difficult or challenging situation.  

Case Analysis

Nurse Manager as a Transactional Leader

            The nurse manager as a transactional leader would require the nurses and other supporting staff to work strictly under established work rules and regulations. The manager would possibly issue threats or warning to all staff that would be late in reporting for their duties, including salary deduction for violating work contract. Since the manager’s interaction with staff is only work-related, he/she would be less interested in finding out the cause for lateness.  They expect the staff to be motivated by the income they earn in exchange for their services. Therefore, staff morale can only be increased through a raise in salary or compensation. As transactional leaders, these nurse managers will only be concerned with ensuring routine activities are accomplished successfully on daily basis, as they mainly focus on short-term objectives.

Nurse Manager as a Transformational Leader

            A nurse manager practicing transformational leadership has to establish an emotional connection with the staff to enable them raise one another to higher levels. They would likely listen to the staff’s explanation for lateness in reporting for their respective shifts, and thereby provide appropriate advice to its recurrence. They would seek to redesign or improve the shift’s schedule to improve the reporting timeliness if they discover it to be the cause. The transformational nurse manager would possibly increase the staff morale through inspiring them and/or creating a supportive working environment where the subordinate nurse and other staff’s efforts are appreciated (McGuire & Kennerly, 2006, p. 179). The nurse manager may also organize training programs to improve the nurses and supporting staff’s competencies in providing high quality care on continuous basis, as they are mainly focused on achievement of long-term goals.


It is evident that transactional leadership will be the most effective in addressing the situation, both in the short-term and long-term.  Unlike transactional leadership, transformational leadership seeks to make both the nurse manager and the subordinate staff realize their full potential beyond their expectations for long-term reasons. The emotional connection it develops amongst employees is essential in ensuring coordination of nurse teamwork activities, their social relationships, thereby ensuring smooth handover of duties when shifts come to an end. Since it creates an interesting, supportive, and enjoyable working environment, the staff will always be motivated to report to workstations early. Finally, its focus on continuous improvement of work processes and workplace environment will be essential in ensuring progressive delivery of high quality health care.    


Bertocci, D. I. (2009). Leadership in organizations: There is a difference between leaders and managers. Lanham, Md: University Press of America.

Hood J.D (2007). Transactional and Transformational Leadership Styles: An Exploratory Investigation and Nontraditional Student Perceptions. ProQuest publishers.

Lloyd, C., King, R., & Deane, F. (2009). Clinical Management in Mental Health Services. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons.

McGuire, E., & Kennerly, S. M. (2006). Nurse Managers as Transformational and Transactional Leaders. Nursing Economic$, 24(4), 179-185.

Suwannapirom S. (2005).Transformational And Transactional Leadership and Performance Outcomes of Japanese and U.S Managers in Thailand. ProQuest publishers.