Transformational leadership in sub-Saharan Africa: An exploratory qualitative study of the application of leadership tenets in Cameroon

by Forka, Frank M., Ph.D., CAPELLA UNIVERSITY, 2012, 231 pages; 3518990


This qualitative explorative research was designed to examine transformational leadership in sub-Saharan Africa, especially the perceived application of transformational leadership tenets in Cameroon from the followers' perspectives. Premised on the evident gaps in the leadership literature and the sparse presence of transformational leaders in Africa--where "too many heads of state have been satisfied to enrich themselves, their cronies, and their families", where "corruption is rampant, another detriment to development" and where "leaders have focused on themselves rather than their peoples" (Rotberg, 2004), the study assessed how far the application of transformational leadership factors could improve the poor state of leadership and leader-follower relationships in Cameroon. Based on the prior works of Burns (1978) and House (1976) and a review of the "psychometric evaluation" of the Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ Form 5X) factors (Antonakis, Avolio & Sivasubramaiam, 2003; Bass & Bass, 2008; Bass & Avolio, 1995, 1990, 1985), the study used Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) and a field-tested Interview Guide. The research sample consisted of 32 participants from the ten regions of Cameroon assessing the four main transformational leadership factors and their sub-questions at above 80% of followers' perceptions of the absence or presence of these factors in Cameroon--in particular the components of "idealized influence", "inspirational motivation", "intellectual stimulation", and "individualized consideration"(Bass & Bass, 2008). The results supported the initial assumptions of the gaps in the leadership literature on transformational leadership in Cameroon and with a strong absence of related theories such as Leader-Member Exchange (LMX) theory (Hogg, 2001; Tajfel & Turner, 1979). Based on the results of this study, there are possibilities for future quantitative research with larger samples on transformational leadership in Cameroon.

AdviserMarc Muchnick
Source TypeDissertation
SubjectsManagement; Political Science; Public policy; Sub Saharan Africa studies; Organizational behavior
Publication Number3518990

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