How to learn service leadership

authoritarian leadership quiz

There are 5 key qualities of service leadership. But first, what’s servant leadership?

What is servant leadership?

A servant leader adapts an altruistic approach in leadership. You’ll need to focus on supporting the growth of others. You must serve first, rather than await being served. Servant leaders strive to produce exemplary qualities in others by impacting their professional growth- they shun fights for power and control acquisition.

To exercise the proper traits of a servant leader, you’ll focus more on team member involvement in day-to-day decision-making processes, rather than being overly authoritative, as a traditional leader would do. Your work will be to synergistically link co-workers at both the management and employee levels, thus building an efficient win-win mechanism.

What are the five qualities of servant leadership?

The concept of servant leadership is more than the servant leading. Below are the five key qualities that go with service leadership:

1.    Strong decision-making skills

Your philosophy must emphasize your teams’ needs. Taking hard choices because of their ultimate good to the organization or business must be natural to you. Never be scared of taking unpopular paths in critical pivotal moments. Also, fear not to offer critical feedback if the need arises.

2.    Emotional intelligence

As a business leader, being empathetic to other people is must-have quality. The servant leadership style involves adept listening skills. Never take for granted your team members’ experiences and perspectives.

3.    Self-awareness

Self-awareness in service leadership creates a consciousness of behavioral tendencies that negatively affect others. Always manage your behavior and emotional outbursts in critical moments. It is key to trust and the establishment of openness in your team.

4.    Communal commitment to others

Shared team environments often demand proper interpersonal relationships and commitment to one another. Team building, corporate social responsibility events, and non-work-related activities help in workplace cohesion.

The well-being of others becomes core to organizational culture.  Each member commits to workplace environment improvement of each other.

5.    Foresight

As a servant leader, you must inform future expectations with experiences progressively built in your career. Use your instincts to steer clear of certain outcomes, consequences, and courses of action.

Who is a good example of a servant leader?

The originator adopted this style and encouraged the disciples to practice servant leadership. He said that to achieve greatness, a team member must strive to be esteemed the least. Further, to desire to be everyone’s leader, a person must first be a servant of all. True shepherds die for their flock. Which he also did.

Lincoln also adopted the servant leadership style. His actions during the Civil War are widely recognized as prime examples of service leadership.  This is especially so in the Union’s preservation and the matter of freeing the Southern slaves.

King chose the difficult path, too. He championed the non-violent approach to Civil Rights activism. He desired to be commemorated not for the accolades and prizes, but for facing the danger of fighting in the interest of social justice.

Not all in service leadership end up dying for the course. However, most sacrifice their goals, ambitions, and leverage to benefit those they lead. A professional physician like Schweitzer (late 19th – early 20th century) certainly could have led a super successful life had he been self-ambitious. Rather, he focused on helping others.

Teresa helped the Indian people- and refused to get credit for it most of the time. She even refused the banquet that’d come with the Nobel Peace Prize awarded her. She preferred the money to be committed to charity by being donated to the poor. Dr. Schweitzer and Mother Teresa lived to a ripe age.

What is the role of a servant leader?

According to Allen GP (2016), servant leadership introduces transformational attributes that guide and inspire followers and organizations. It focuses on identifying, supporting, and optimizing individual performances to achieve common goals- without concentrating on which individual will get the final credit.

Servant leaders concentrate on serving followers, clients, and business. It seeks to influence by serving needs.

What is the mindset of a servant leader?

There are three mindsets of a servant leader that lead to success:

1.    The servant mindset

In service leadership, you serve. You focus on member needs over your own. You analyze them and find empathetic points of contact with each team member. Get the best and give them credit.

2.    The growth mindset

Any team member can learn anything. Equipping your team with new skills is key. Give everyone opportunities. Be the coach. Believe in every member and encourage them to outperform themselves.

3.    The multiplier mindset

The adept servant leader recognizes that the organization has really invested in them. They seek to give back by cutting off whatever they could easily delegate. They rather focus on fixing problems hands on- a perfect multiplier opportunity.

What is the difference between a leader and a servant leader?

The Emerald stipulates primarily that transformational leadership and service leadership differ only in their respective focal point.

The transformational manager builds teams that focus on organizational objectives. The service leader’s attention is, on the contrary, towards their followers. The organizational objectives are a secondary outcome of individual followers’ effort and focus.

Final Thoughts

The powerful force of service leadership is a result of the discovery of a serving attitude, an answer to a higher calling, and summoned courage to engage. To learn how to service lead, bear a mindset of a serving leader. Once you perfect this, train your followers to replicate it. Ultimately, assist followed develop a culture of self-ability enhancement and acceptance. Enhance their knowledge by being their coach. Empathize with them and get to doing things yourself so that they follow.

As you answer your call to lead, unlock the call to lead in your team members having answered your own. Take bold steps forward even when the choice is costly.  You influence others into accepting their own leader identities. Empathize with weaknesses but coach weaker members to smoothen up processes.

As you develop ideas into purposeful action areas, be courageous to engage. Do not delight in isolation. Rather, embrace collaboration. Remember that the younger generation needs assurance to effectively have face-to-face interactions with older adept leaders.

References

1 NCBI

2. Masterclass

3. Emerald

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