A shift in leadership

Eyal Eckhaus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Transformational leadership (TL) has been proven to offer valuable advantages to organizations. However, personality is not a constant and traits can change intensity relative to life circumstances or events. Therefore, traits that constitute TL may also shift up to a point such that the leader's basic abilities and talents are not providing sufficient contribution to the organization. Prior research on TL focuses mainly on the positive influence of the leader, without considering the changes in the manifestation of TL that may happen over time. The purpose of this study is to advance the theory of TL, by showing evidence of the fact that TL may be shifted and traits constituting an unbalanced personality may reach an extreme that leads to destructive outcomes. The research claims are demonstrated using the case study of Enron, employing a popular text mining technique that is carried out using the Enron corpus, recommended as one of the best textual sets for research. Findings confirm the prevalence of TL in two notorious Enron CEOs in an extreme manifestation, which augment the leadership qualities of a well-known and appreciated senior manager who resisted corruption.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-31
Number of pages13
JournalAcademy of Strategic Management Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Apr 2017


  • Personality
  • Text mining
  • Transformational leadership


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