Throughout his career, he navigated his companies and employees through the impact of the post-World War I economic boom, the Great Depression and World War II. Even without Walt Disney, the company continues with this leadership … London: Cassell. Disneyland completely revolutionised family entertainment and amusement parks and was Walt’s primary focus now. His high standards pushed the animators to their limits and he “insisted on quality from individuals of whom it had never been required; he inspired commitment.”  (Gabler, 2008, p. 135)  His Transformational leadership style was more fully developed as his employees were motivated to go above and beyond expectations (Bass & Riggio, 2006). Bass, B. M., & Riggio, R. E. (2006). Disney motivated people through his animation and helped portray his ideals. Transformational Leadership. In J. In his line of work, animation for children and adults, charisma is one of the main ingredients in what made Disney so successful. As Walt created an environment of democracy and social empowerment, he demonstrated a “power with” model of transformative leadership (Blase & Anderson, 1995). There, together with his brother Roy, they forged the Disney Brothers Studio and attracted a small group of talented artists. Charismatic Leadership. A transformational leader, “serves to change the status quo by appealing to followers’ values and their since of higher purpose” (Northouse, 2013). It was a vision of a place where children and parents could have fun together. A transformational leader, “serves to change the status quo by appealing to followers’ values and their since of higher purpose” (Northouse, 2013). In his line of work, animation for children and adults, charisma is one of the main ingredients in what made Disney so successful. Disney wanted all children to have the opportunity to succeed in anything they wanted to do. While the film studio may have lost its appeal, something even more significant was on the horizon for Walt Disney, as he finalised plans for his most revolutionary contribution to the entertainment world, Disneyland. He was an innovator and revolutionary in many areas of entertainment, business and education that reach far beyond animation, film, television, amusements parks and a certain iconic mouse. By the early 1940s, Walt was less visible and less engaged with his staff, and union pressure and discontent from staff led to a devastating strike. Tired of Walt’s controlling ways, the distributor approached one of Walt’s former disgruntled employees to take over the studio and replace him. It was brutal work for a young child, with Walt often trudging through ice and snow and sneaking a sleep in warm apartment foyers. (2008). Disney wanted all children to have the opportunity to succeed in anything they wanted to do. Even NASA admitted that Disney’s fervent enthusiasm for its space program was instrumental in drumming up support for space exploration (Gabler, 2008). 31-43). Mahwah, New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Unfortunately, Walt was a poor financial manager and tried a variety of ways to keep the business afloat. (Gronn, 1999). Disney had become dispensable at his own company, and many of his employees had betrayed him. In P. Gronn, The making of educational leaders (pp. During the 1930’s period of the Great Depression, when most of America was struggling, Walt was paying his employees a relative fortune and had grown his staff to a happy unit of more than 500. My whole family just visited Disney world last summer. From now on it’s mashed potato and gravy” (Gabler, 2008, p. 423). Blase, & G. L. Anderson, The micropolitics of educational leadership: from control to empowerment (pp. London: Aurum Press Ltd. Gronn, P. (1999). He created a culture of excellence by encouraging his employees to encompass his vision and high expectations (McAfee, 2014). Walt had tried to use his charisma and rhetoric to address the employees and explain the financial pressures of the company (Heracleous & Klaering, 2014); however it was not enough and the strike lasted more than three months, destroying the spirit of the company and resulting in a downsizing of staff from 1200 to 694 (Gabler, 2008). The Bases of Power and the Power/Interaction Model of Interpersonal Influence. The animators were ambitions and full of optimism as they began work on “Snow White” with many buoyed and immensely proud of the revolutionary technical achievements the studio was making. He established strong role models for beliefs and values. As Oswald became more successful, Walt took on more of a supervisory role which led to clashes with his distributor. Los Angeles: Sage Publications. Retrieved from https://qut.rl.talis.com/items/7374B285-394C-489D-FB91-DAB16A0FA71D.html, Heracleous, L., & Klaering, L. A. Encyclopedia of group processes & intergroup relations, 73-74. doi:0.4135/9781412972017.n23. Charismatic Leadership and Rhetorical Competence. Retrieved from http://ebookcentral.proquest.com.ezp01.library.qut.edu.au/lib/qut/reader.action?docID=274519, Blase, J., & Anderson, G. L. (1995). Walt Disney was an American legend and a hero who participated in making success in America. His legacy is felt in many ways and he can still truly be identified as one of the most influential figures of the 20th and 21st centuries. Walt Disney was a transformational leader. 212.). Not only was Disney the main animator in Hollywood, he also developed programs to help children develop artistically. Not only did he have charisma but he also embodied inspirational motivation. Filed Under: transformational Tagged With: Disney, transformational Leadership, Walt. Transformational Leadership, 2nd ed. At school, he was not the best student, no doubt due to the extreme tiredness he felt due to his paper route, but he was wildly enthusiastic. The four main leader characteristics are: vision, rhetorical skills, image and trust building, and personalized leadership (Northouse, 2013). The post-war studio did not have the resources for the same level of commitment as was required to produce films of the quality of “Snow White” and Walt himself said, “We’re through with caviar. It is impossible now to conceive of a world without Disney’s overwhelming influence, all of which started with a mouse. Everything was under his control, and he created the “Disney University” to train the theme park’s staff and indoctrinate them into the Disney philosophy. These early years were when the Transformational aspect of Walt’s leadership journey were formed. Charismatic leadership. Walt was always conscious of his legacy, delegating more and more responsibility, and reorganising his various companies to ensure they would thrive after he was gone. The process he went through to get the empire he developed showed how he changed and transformed as a leader. What Should Leaders Do about Gender Difference? From the beginning Disney had many people that he influenced and motivated. By 1929, Walt Disney had employed 28 of the best animators at the new “Walt Disney Enterprises.”  The most substantial change from the old company to the new company was Walt’s expectation of excellence. Walt Disney not only created a magical kingdom for people, he also passed and influenced his idea of development to others which is innovation and persistence. Employees demonstrated a sense of commitment and a collegiate approach to their work, collectively developing ideas and stories and pooling their talents for the good of the company. He magnified his charisma, and was revered and spoken of in quasi-religious terms, yet despite this, he prided himself on being “one of the guys” and maintained the informal, first-name basis of his community. These motivations and ideals helped shape society during his “rein” in the animation world. Disney’s dreams became true due to the fact that he had the four main leader characteristics. In this paper I will explain why he was both a visionary and ethical leader. Disney had lots of charisma. Disney had lots of charisma. Disney motivated people through his animation and helped portray his ideals. The influence of childhood experiences and family helps to forge a personal identity that greatly influences a leader’s character, hence the significance of these experiences in the formation stage of Walt’s leadership career. Wed Oct 30 2013 20:07:08 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time), http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JbYeyEZv3T8, The Toxic Triangle: Chronicle of a fatal teleconference, Bridging Cultural Gaps: Dilemmas in Contrasting Countries. He had also begun planning for CalArts which is now a thriving Arts university and which was to be Walt’s most significant legacy. Disney was an innovator and go getter. Group & Organization Management, 39(2), 131-161. Walter Elias Disney followed Transformational style of leadership which believes in motivating, influencing and empowering their followers to believe and follow them through their charisma (Langer… Walt Disney had a vision and did everything in his power to make this vision a reality. The four main leader characteristics are: vision, rhetorical skills, image and trust building, and personalized leadership (Northouse, 2013). 164.) In Kansas City, Walt began to “create the idea of Walt Disney – the idea of someone who beat poverty, hardship and neglect.”  (Gabler, 2008, p. 32)  These were the early incarnations of the Charismatic aspect of Walt’s future leadership style, where a powerful personal magnetism allows leaders to charm or influence others (Bligh & Kohles, 2010). After hearing the devastating news at a meeting in New York and forced to start over, he vowed to make changes and never work for anyone again, and on a fateful train journey from New York to Los Angeles, Mickey Mouse was born. “Cast members” were hired who were specifically suited to their “on stage” roles, and they had to be perfectly groomed and cheery at all times, consistently playing their part in the story. Disney was now a Transformational leader in every aspect: He showed idealised influence, having earned the trust and admiration of his staff; inspirational motivation where he was able to motivate his staff to see and support his vision for the company; intellectual stimulation where his staff were driven to be innovative and creative in their work; and individualised consideration, where the needs and individuality of each staff member were understood and supported (Bass & Riggio, 2006). He realised that most people found him charming and attractive and he used this to his advantage. 7.) The success of “Oswald the lucky rabbit” would eventually lead to one of the defining moments of Walt’s career that haunted him throughout his life. Not only was Disney the main animator in Hollywood, he also developed programs to help children develop artistically. 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