Author : K. Kariuki, Josphat

Idealized Influence and Inspirational Motivation in a Microfinance Context: Review of Literature

Josphat K. Kariuki

International Journal of Organizational Leadership, 2021, Volume 10, Issue Special Issue 2021, Pages 120-140
DOI: 10.33844/ijol.2021.60539

Besides the enormous attention paid to transformational leadership construct for the last four decades, much of the literature does not adequately delve deeper into the respective dimensions of the construct, thus limiting the clarity of how the dimensions impact organizations. This paper reviews the extant conceptual, theoretical, and empirical literature on the idealized influence and inspirational motivation dimensions of transformational leadership style focusing on microfinance context. This paper presents a comprehensive and integrative theoretical framework for knowledge advancement in the field of leadership. The methodology used for the review integrates the desktop and critical analysis of 56 journal articles in these dimensions. The key databases used to extract the relevant literature were JSTOR, Emerald, Google Scholar, DOAJ, and Wiley Interscience, with 69.09% being articles published in 2017 – 2021. Aspects used to qualify articles for review consideration were transformational leadership, idealized influence, inspirational motivation, and leadership in microfinance or any combination. The emerging gaps in the theorization and conceptualization of idealized influence and inspirational motivation were identified, presenting a case for further research on the transformational leadership construct. The review establishes that the four “Is” of transformational leadership (Idealized influence, Inspirational motivation, Intellectual stimulation, and Individualized consideration) are ambiguously interrelated, presenting a challenge of incoherence in the conceptual models used by researchers to conduct empirical research. The study also seeks to fill the contextual gap on the scanty research done to date on the outcomes of idealized influence and inspirational motivation in microfinance context such as staff retention, organizational commitment, self-efficacy, and organizational performance. A comprehensive conceptual framework for guiding further research on the constructs is formulated, including supportive propositions that can be empirically tested.