• transformational leadership;
  • perceived effectiveness;
  • emergency management;
  • Federal Human Capital Survey


It is generally accepted that all administrative agencies need a combination of transactional and transformational leaders; this is no different in emergency management agencies. However, until recently there has been relatively little study regarding the exact nature of transformational leadership in emergency management. Do standard concepts of transformational leadership apply? We used the case of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to explore this issue. Further, because of the time series data available when the agency studied was going through significant changes, we pose a further question: Do “shocks” to an agency significantly affect notions of transformational leadership? Structural equation modeling is conducted to examine and measure transformational leadership behaviors and explore how they relate to public employees' perceptions of leadership effectiveness as reported by the 2002, 2006, and 2008 Federal Human Capital Surveys (FHCS).