Sample Leadership Studies Paper on Leadership in Law Enforcement

Transactional and Transformational Leaders

Transactional leadership focuses on group performance, organization, and supervision roles. Leaders who implement this style of leadership pay attention to specific tasks and promote employees’ compliance through punishments and rewards. Essentially, in this type of leadership, rewards and punishments are dependent on the followers’ performances (Woods, 2019). Hence, the relationship between managers and subordinates is an exchange appealing to a person’s interests. Both parties must, therefore, exhibit values like reliability, honesty, and fairness. Although rules, procedures, and standards are critical in this style of leadership, they do not enhance organizational change and growth. Instead, they focus on enforcing current rules and expectations to maintain order in the organization.

Unlike transactional leadership, which focuses on the followers’ faults and deviations, transformational leadership focuses on working with subordinates to identify the required changes and subsequent results. The leader inspires the followers to execute the changes, surpass self-interests, and make greater contributions (Woods, 2019). Transformational leaders work to enhance subordinates’ motivation, morale, and performance through various mechanisms. The leader acts as a role model for the followers to inspire and raise their interests, challenging them to assume greater ownership of the project.

Distinctions between Leaders and Managers

Although the two are similar in some respects, they involve different types of outlook, skills, and behaviors. Notably, Leaders have a vision of what can be achieved and evolve strategies for realizing the vision. They motivate people and can negotiate for resources to achieve their goals. Managers, on the other hand, ensure that the available resources are well organized and applied to produce the best results (Wajdi, 2017). Another difference is that leaders are often in top ranks with a wide range of responsibilities as opposed to managers who hold mid-level positions and have a narrower range of responsibilities. Another distinction is that leaders . Lastly, leaders focus on helping their followers and subordinates to grow both personally and professionally, while managers focus on ensuring that subordinates are performing according to specified rules and procedures

Components of the Leadership Skill Mix

Components of the leadership skill mix include human relations, conceptual, and technical skills relations skills entail a leader’s ability to connect positively with other people. Leaders must possess motivation, conflict resolution, and quality interpersonal communication skills to work effectively with followers (Bratton, 2020). Conceptual skills involve the ability to visualize and project ideas that are not yet tangible. These skills present knowledge to think beyond the task at hand. Technical skills are processes and techniques that are essential for performing certain jobs efficiently (Bratton, 2020).  They relate to an individual’s specific area of expertise.

Downs’ Four Styles of Leader Behavior

Anthony Downs defined four types of leader behavior in bureaucratic structures: climbers, conservers, zealots, and advocates. Climbers are strongly interested in power and the prestigious need to innovate new functions that can only be performed in their departments. They often prioritize their self-interests and economize on the failures of other departments (Bratton, 2020). Conservers, on the other hand, tend to incline towards maintaining the status quo and control of their subordinates. This is often observed when an individual has held a certain position for a long time.

Zealots have limited interests that revolve almost entirely on them. They do not pay attention to their duties in their entirety and often frustrate other leaders by expecting them to work towards the same agenda to achieve their self-interests (Bratton, 2020). They are poor administrators and rarely succeed in high administrative positions. On the other hand, advocates tend to promote everything under their administration. To the outsiders, advocates are highly biased, but they are viewed as impartial and develop well-rounded programs within their units of administration (Bratton, 2020). Presumably, advocates are conservative and more radical than climbers. That is, they are willing to promote programs and rationales that may in part irritate powerful groups, including the management, to enhance their department’s performance.


Bratton, J. (Ed.). (2020). Organizational leadership. SAGE Publications Limited. Retrieved from,+J.+(Ed.).+(2020).+Organizational+leadership+free+pdf&source=bl&ots=hVhYQ0ijIM&sig=ACfU3U03EsXKfrMd2aOZRgsJUllk5X3Nyw&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjLnMr2o8fpAhVZ8uAKHUanBycQ6AEwAXoECAoQAQ#v=onepage&q=Bratton%2C%20J.%20(Ed.).%20(2020).%20Organizational%20leadership%20free%20pdf&f=false

Wajdi, B. N. (2017). The differences between management and leadership. Sinergi: Jurnal Ilmiah Ilmu Manajemen7(1). Retrieved from

Woods, T. B. (2019). An Examination of the Suitability of Transactional, Transformational, and Situational Leadership Theories in Evaluating the Role of Gender in Determining the Leadership Style: a Comparison and Contrast of Three Leadership Theories. American Journal of Management Studies4(1), 1-11. Retrieved from