Executive Leadership Attributes Relating to Transformed Organizational Human Resource Services
A Study of Transformational Leadership
"This study is an early evaluation of the benefits of using the internet and information technology for Human Resources programs and practices by a sample of large public and private for profit and not for profit organizations. The respondents themselves were higher in transformational leadership. Additionally, those with higher transformational scores were more likely to use IT for Human Resources Management. The use of IT enhanced accessibility, timeliness, and HR decision making. We are likely to see in the years to come many more evaluated shifts of HR programs and practices from paper to PC." -Bernard M. Bass, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Management, Binghamton University
"I have gone thru [your] results and they make a lot of sense as you noted. I wish that we had more HR leaders that were both strategic and transformational..... your results sure support that!" -Bruce J. Avolio, Don & Shirley Clifton Chair in Leadership, Dept. of Management, College of Business, University of Nebraska Lincoln
This study explored the relationships between the transformational leadership attributes of Human Resource (HR) executives and the Internet-based transformed HR services they provide. In general, this research addressed the question whether HR executives, who are more transformational in leader style, are more likely to be successful in transforming their respective HR services.
Senior HR executives of Fortune 1000, Forbes 257 and other high performance organizations responded to an online survey regarding their relevant organizational roles, HR experience levels, Information Technology (IT) experience levels, education levels and their involvement levels during their Internet-based system implementations. The primary data came from their assessments of the impact of their Internet-based HR information systems and also self-reports of their individual leadership style using the MLQ-5X instrument. A total of 58 senior HR executives responded to the survey, representing an overall 4.8% response rate from the 1,219 prospective executives. Participating senior HR executives represented public, private and not-for-profit organizations in a variety of industries.
Survey respondents reported high transformational (TF) leadership and low transactional (TA) leadership scores. Female participants reported higher TF scores than their male counterparts, although not significantly so. A positive and significant relationship was found between respondent s TF scores and their Transformed Human Resource Function (THRF) scores, lending further validity to the transformational leadership concept. In general, the respondents reported positive results from implementing Internet-based HR information systems: increased accessibility to HR program information, increased timeliness of HR actions, increased HR data accuracy, and improved HR decision making capability.
Associations were also noted between specific components of transformational leadership and the THRF scores. Differences between levels of executive involvement, executive IT experience, executive HR experience, and executive gender relevant to the THRF were also explored. Practical implications (specifically as relates to HR selection and HR roles) and recommendations for future research are provided.
About the Author
Dr. Kathleen K. Roth has more than thirty years of leadership and senior management experience in both the public and private sectors. She has served as a corporate CEO; military commander; senior military personnel strategist; project leader; academic department director; and management consultant. In addition, Dr. Roth has an extensive IT background and significant experience in leading high performance work teams for Internet-based information systems. She served in the U.S. Army and is a retired military officer - last serving in the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. Dr. Roth is currently employed as a management consultant with Booz Allen Hamilton, Inc. She also serves as an adjunct faculty member in the School of Business of Argosy University, Sarasota, Florida where she instructs both undergraduate and graduate students in such areas of study as leadership, information technology, business psychology, and human resource management. Dr. Roth earned a master of education (Ed.M) degree from Boston University and a doctor of business administration (DBA) degree from Argosy University. She is a graduate of several military leadership schools including the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas. Dr. Roth's research interests include areas of executive leadership, human resource information management systems, and ERP technology.