“A leader… is like a shepherd, they stay behind the flock,letting the most nimble go ahead, whereupon the others follow, not realising that all along they are being directed from behind”.Nelson Mandela
“The servant-leader is servant first… it begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve, to serve first. Then conscious choice brings one to aspire to lead. That person is sharply different from one who is leader first”.Robert Greenleaf
- Calling – compelled to lead others, for a belief that is bigger than the individual.
- Self-Awareness – thinking deeply about emotions and behavior, align with values.
- Stewardship – taking responsibility for the actions and performance of a team, and being accountable for the role team members play.
- Listening – committed to listening deeply to others.
- Persuasive – encouraging others to take action.
- Growth – committed to the personal and professional development of everyone in the team.
- Empathy – striving to understand other people’s intentions and perspectives.
- Foresight – predicting the future by learning from past experiences, identifying what’s happening now, and understanding the consequences of your decisions.
- Community-building – building a sense of community within the organisation.
- Healing – supporting the emotional health and “wholeness” of people.
- Conceptualisation – dreaming great dreams, looking beyond day-to-day realities to the bigger picture.
I read this article on Servant Leadership via Linkedin a while back. It is based on research into the most successful companies, brands and CEOs in the world and what characteristics they share:
“Over the last three decades, servant leadership has risen from a noble and ethical leadership ideology stuck in religious worldviews to the very principles of how the most successful companies on the planet operate and profit”.
Servant leadership makes teams stronger, organisations more successful and enables each individual in a team to grow and have impact. Servant leaders grow communities, create followers and lead change.
When I think of great leaders who I admire, I think of Martin Luther King, Mother Theresa, Nelson Mandel and Mahatma Ghandi.
What do these world leaders all have in common?
When I think of the leaders around me and in the world who do not inspire me, what do they have in common?