From Leader To Transformer

To develop a highly effective leadership culture, you must first grow into a highly effective leader

Throughout my career, starting as an apprentice engineer, a graduate engineer and eventually moving into leadership positions, I have attended a lot of events/seminars/workshops/courses on leadership development. On some of these events we discussed culture change, but it stopped there.

The work that was required following the event to transform culture did not happen. We need to realise that to transform our leadership and culture, it won’t happen by attending an event and then doing nothing.

1. The Challenge

Let’s accept that transforming leadership and culture is very, very challenging and will not happen overnight. It will take us as leaders to influence our teams and people to buy-in to the positive change. It will take us as leaders to influence our teams and people to accept the positive change.

It will take us as leaders to influence our teams and people to embrace the positive change.


This is extremely challenging, especially if the current team and organisational culture is toxic, if the current leaders of the organisation are low performing and disengaged, if the middle managers are low performing and disengaged, and overall the teams are low performing and disengaged.

If this is the case in your current organisation, then transforming the leadership and culture is absolutely imperative.

Transformers are leaders who influence their people to change their behaviour, and most of all change & develop their character. Transformation is a complete change of how a person behaves, acts and thinks.

A transformer is a leader who will go more than the extra mile for their people. A transformer will make sacrifices in their own lives if it means they can make a significant difference in the life of another person.

A transformer is someone who sees challenges and obstacles as opportunities to help and improve. A transformer is a leader who will climb to the top of the leadership ladder and straight away climb back down to help another climb up.

A transformer does not care if they are in a leadership position or if they have a leadership job title.

A transformer focusses on their own putting others before themselves, ensuring they are full of energy when with a team member, puts in more than enough effort, puts in more than enough time, develops their own character to ensure they are at their best for their people, and makes the right sacrifices.

That sounds like a lot to take on if you want to become a transformer, and that is why not a lot of people have the drive to be a transformer. I hope you and your team members do have that drive and will work on yourselves every day to be the transformer you need to be for others.

2. Growing The Team

To grow a highly effective team, then we need great team members who can become highly effective team players. The same goes if we want to help our highly effective team players to develop into transformers.

They cannot go back to being good or being average. A transformer refuses to accept good or average people because he/she knows they won’t have the drive to become a highly effective team player and eventually a transformer.

You must do the same if you want to develop your highly effective team players into transformers. If you know you have the right team members with the drive to become a transformer, then it is your responsibility and purpose to unleash their potential.

As a transformer, you have an amazing opportunity to make a significant difference in the lives of your team members and beyond.

3. The Opportunity

This opportunity is not about ensuring your team complete their job tasks to the best of their ability and go home at the end of the day.

This opportunity is about you as the transformer developing more transformers within your team, so that they can develop even more transformers by multiplying your influence. It is the transformational snowball effect again. If you don’t quite feel like a transformer yet, don’t worry.

This is your opportunity to go from being good to being great in both your personal and professional life. This is your opportunity to accept the responsibility of becoming a transformer.

It doesn’t matter if you’re not the leader of the organisation or on the board of directors. It doesn’t even matter if you’re in the training department. This is your opportunity, and you must seize it.

4. Being The Leader

As the leader of your team, you must be able to influence them on a positive level at all times, and you must develop yourself into a transformer first. Remember, leadership starts with you, but it is about others.

You will not be able to climb to the top of the leadership ladder if you have not first developed yourself into a transformer. So therefore, you will not be able to climb back down and help one your team members up the ladder and let them know where the dodgy steps are.

We cannot add value to our people if we haven’t first made ourselves valuable. Before you can lead and influence your team through the journey to becoming a transformer, you must have already been on that journey yourself.

What I’m describing in this section of becoming a transformer sounds like it will be difficult and will take up a lot of your time. Well, yes it will be so you must first accept that. It is your role to motivate your team to embrace the change you are leading.

You must keep motivating them until they can inspire themselves to keep going, and then your presence will not be relied upon as much because of their own inspiration. It is your role to help your team believe in themselves.


In the beginning, it is highly likely that your team will find it difficult to believe in themselves. So it will be up to you to encourage and influence them to change that mindset. Influence is leadership, and your positive influence is how you will help to develop your highly effective team players into transformers.

Your influence is how you are going to help your highly effective team players develop their character and change their values in a transformative way.

You have the opportunity and ability to change your organisational culture into a highly effective leadership culture. It doesn’t matter if you are the most senior person, or are on the board of directors.

Your ability to influence and help your people to develop their character is what determines you as a transformer. It is not your position as a manager or director, and it is not your job title. You can go from leader to transformer and you can help your people to become transformers too.

Leaders who become transformers are able to transform the organisational culture into a highly effective leadership culture. Transformers know how to respect their people and treat everyone of them like family. This is how they help their people become highly effective leaders and highly effective team players. Culture starts with how a person feels. So, a transformer who helps their people to feel great every day is on the right path to developing a team and an organisation of transformers.

I welcome hearing how this post has influenced the way you think, the way you lead, or the results you have achieved because of what you’ve learned in it. Please feel free to share your thoughts with me by commenting below.

Check out my other articles by Clicking HERE

All the best,

Tom (LeadGrowInfluence)

10 thoughts on “From Leader To Transformer

  1. Great intellectual read Tom. Taking leadership to the next level being a transforming change agent. Organizations with super self motivated people like these will experience exponential growth, because a company is good as its employees, and these are the A players who push their team to get to the next level.

    1. Hi Arbonne,

      Thank you for sharing your comment.

      I am really pleased that you found this a great read and you can see taking leadership to the next level.

      I hope you take on the advice and take action with your own people, and share what you learn with them.

      All the best,


  2. Hey Tom,

    Leadership is a struggle for a lot of people. Meaning, in order to lead you have to make tough decisions, have people respect you, and most importantly keep the morale high.

    What do you think is the best approach for a toxic work environment, though? For instance, where everyone just tells on each other to get each other in trouble. Instead, they should be helping each other and working together as a team.

    1. Hi Garen,

      Thank you for your comment.

      The leader must first understand what a toxic work environment is, and if in fact it is one.

      If that is the case, then it is the leader’s job to change it. The leader must take the lead and build positive relationships with each team member, listen to understand them, ask them open questions, listen to their ideas and take action on what they learn from their people.

      When your people feel heard, they feel cared for, when they feel cared for, they feel trusted, when they feel trusted, that is when you can increase your influence and change the environment.

      What are your thoughts?


  3. Hi, Tom
    I really like the analogy of climbing the leadership ladder you used to break things down here. It makes the article easy to understand.

    The emphasis on personal development as a transformative leader is inspiring. It reminds us that in order to add value to our team, we must first invest in our own growth.

    I appreciate the insightful message conveyed in this article.

    I now come to agree with you, being a transformer leader is not easy.

    Can’t wait to read your next article.

    1. Hi Sebastian,

      Thank you for your comment, means the world.

      I hope you take action on what you learn from this article and share what you learn with your people.

      If you want to transform your people, then you must first transform yourself.

      Leadership is aout others, but it starts with you.

      All the best,


  4. Thanks, Tom for all of these wonderful insights into leadership. It is so important to take the time and make the effort to develop and continually increase these skills. I appreciate this information.

    1. Hi Joseph,

      Thank you for your comment.

      I am really pleased that you appreciate this information. I hope you can use it to yours and your people’s advantage as a leader.

      All the best,


  5. I was immediately drawn to this article as soon as I read the title. The entire concept of becoming a transformer is intriguing to me.
    In order to be a top level leader its not important to lead people but to transform them as well.
    Its about respecting your team members and creating a culture that moves them to do good.
    Thanks for the leadership tips,

    1. Hi Marlinda,

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts, means the world.

      I couldn’t agree with you more about respecting your team members and creating a positive culture.

      Keep doing that with your own people and increasing your positive influence.

      All the best,


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