A Philosophy for Life
What is Servant Leadership? It’s more than the latest hip theory on how to motivate employees, or the latest buzzword (no boiling the ocean over here). Instead, it’s a philosophy rooted in the writings of Robert K. Greenleaf, but found across generations of leaders, formal and informal, from all walks of life.
Listening and mindfulness help leaders remove barriers, seek greater understanding, and remove barriers. It is a key tool in perceiving what our followers need from us, building trust, and showing respect to our teams.
Empathy begins with listening – truly being present in the moment with someone and listening with your whole self. It’s a key practice for Servant Leaders, and a responsibility to take seriously. It means showing up for someone and helping them be seen.
Listening, empathy, and compassion can help leaders recognize areas that require healing. Doing so can contribute to a healthier, emotionally safe workplace where people can grow.
Greenleaf, asserted “awareness” is a critical element of successful servant leadership. He observed, “Awareness is not a giver of solace—it is just the opposite. ... The purpose of awareness, from Greenleaf's perspective, is to fulfill the needs of others and to persuade those being led toward the common good.
Servant Leaders use persuasion instead of authority or control to build consensus among team members. The goal of persuasion is to build trust, even if doing so takes longer or more effort than other more traditional methods.
Servant Leaders dream big. They help look far beyond the day to day, giving larger vision and purpose to their followers.
Servant Leaders are students of history and human behavior. They hone the ability to predict the future based on past experiences, observations, and a deep understanding of the consequeneces of their decision-making.
Servant Leaders walk the walk. They model the behavior they want to see in their teams, hold themselves and others accountable, and reflect often on their values.
Growth of People
A deep commitment to the growth of people is a core belief of Servant Leaders. They are committed to the personal and professional wellbeing of everyone on their team.
Servant Leaders recognize the importance of play. They encourage team members to socialize, facilitate opportunities for connection, and are comfortable with employees building relationships with one another.
Check out the blog for info about Servant Leadership, more detail on each episode, and thoughts on how marketing and communications professionals can serve first.
Have you ever heard of the term “karmic assignment?” It’s the idea that each of us has a purpose on this planet or work that we cannot not do. Work that we would pay to do, instead of being motivated by extrinsic motivation. In Episode 15, I talked to Gary Mueller,...
The Servant Marketer is a weekly podcast that explores the crossroads of Servant Leadership and the marketing profession. New episodes drop every Wednesday and feature marketing leaders, marketers, creatives, academics and entrepreneurs.