What do we mean by transformational leadership?
"Trans" means across and "transform" means changing or going from one shape 'across' to another.
In that sense, transformational leadership can be seen as a style of leadership where the leader is able to induce change in people, organizations or even cultures.
Ideally, this will be a positive change.
It is clear that change is not easy to create - the question in fact is, how much can you change people if at all?
And if it is already difficult to change one person, how can you change and transform entire teams or even countries?
Only a very compelling leader might be able to get results in this direction, one that can actually influence people.
What makes the big difference between a manager and an influential leader?
An influential leader has people following him because of his charisma, his vision and his focus on the goal.
A manager is followed because of his status.
The difference is in characteristics and behaviors.
An influential leader leads with his actions, by expressing and painting a vivid picture of his visions and communicating them clearly to his followers. Obstacles are merely challenges that can be overcome and the focus remains positive.
These are all characteristics that horses train consciously as well as subconsciously in people.
It is not a coincidence that kings throughout history where trained with horses - it was an important aspect of shaping and developing the characteristics and personality of a transformational leader.
Going from squire to knight long before being eligible to become king, the majority of early leaders enjoyed a thorough education alongside horses.
And in some parts of the world, we still see this shaping of character: young people learning to lead and convince horses before they are fit for their role in the world.
Is it surprising that these people later are at the top of organizations where transformational leadership indeed seems possible?
To me, the Middle East and especially the United Arab Emirates where I have been living since 2006 are places where we see an interesting correlation between transformational leadership, horses and culture change.
This is also what I love about bringing horse assisted coaching to the region - tapping into the existing formula for success, these trainings allow anyone to benefit from the wisdom of the horses, whether you are a rider or not, whether you own horses or not.
In one or two day trainings, we bring out the core essence of what it means to be an influential leader, how you can make use of your own personal leadership style and work on your personal strengths and weaknesses, to bring positive change into your teams and organizations.