The Nuances of Servant Leadership!

Nuance is a powerful call for a different type of leadership―one that rejects the quick fixes, oppositional thinking, and superficial innovations that make no lasting impact on our most pressing and complex problems.

Think back to the most recent interactions with your current leader. How did those interactions make you feel? Was it a great feeling, or something you want to forget?

The type of Leadership Development I practice has to do specifically with an individual’s character and behavior. Why? Because there’s a direct line from a person’s character and behavior to the influence they bring to bear with everyone that reports to, or is in their charge.

List the names of those leaders who you feel connected to or are inspired by. Can you identify the leadership traits they had that inspired you to become a better version of yourself? My mentor was Sam Walton and he inspired me with his consistency and willingness to make hard decisions.

A leaders’ behavior has a huge impact on everyone. It somehow instills a belief system of a ‘perfect’ leadership. For anyone that spends much of their time looking at ‘leaders’ in the workspace during the day, they tend to catch on to few of those traits.

In theory, if you search leadership styles, you’ll find about 10 specific types. In reality, there are really only two:

Self-serving

v/s

Serving others

The first type of Leadership is all about “What’s in it for me?” The objective is to have a team or set of individuals who follow the objectives of the leader.

The second type of Leadership is all about serving others. This is a rarity in today’s world. Think about a scenario where you did something good for others without any agenda or without any “What’s in it for me?”.  Sit back and think how it made you feel. What were your foremost thoughts? Did you go beyond your limits to help someone?

This is what a ‘servant leader’ is.  He/she is someone who puts others’ interests first. And they’re available at a moment’s notice any-time, any-day, and selflessly help achieve the team’s goals and objectives.

In it’s purest form, Servant Leadership is a philosophy and set of practices that enriches the lives of individuals, builds better organizations and ultimately creates a more just and caring world.

Take a look in the mirror and ask yourself this question: What kind of Leader am I? Self-serving or serving others?

It’s a tough question, but one that might provide some answers as to why your way of leading others isn’t working.

Weekly Leadership Insight!

If your life’s like most, you’re faced with constant problems, obstacles and challenges, both personally and professionally. The key to dealing with each of these will determine your ultimate level of success. Your perspective and attitude are critical as you view and react to your surroundings and circumstances.      
 
Action Step:
Take time this week to identify which kind of Leader you are: Self-serving or serving others. Reflect upon which one is a reflection of your charter and behavior. Then look for tangible ways that you can improve.  

2 thoughts on “The Nuances of Servant Leadership!”

  1. Another excellent article Maxie. Your insights are absolutely spot-on and incredibly true. I have experienced servant leaders who were phenomenal people, people who truly cared about others’ around them. As a result they excelled in their position. It’s not rocket science and many aspiring leaders should heed your insights and perspective – it will pay off for them in their careers. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Thanks so much, Chic! I really appreciate your comments. If it weren’t for ego and thirst for power, Servant Leadership would be the dominant style today rather than all the other autocratic styles. Too much to hope for, I dare say. 🙂

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