Are you a servant leader?

Twenty years after his death, Robert Greenleaf’s ideas continue to inspire servant leaders.

In Insights on Leadership, Larry Spears sums up Greenleaf’s theory of servant leadership in 10 characteristics: listening, empathy, healing, awareness, persuasion, conceptualization, foresight, stewardship, helping people grow, and community building.

The Center For Ethics at Emory University reports that some of America’s top companies have embraced Greenleaf’s ideas. Many of Forbes’ “The 100 Best Companies to Work For in America” such as Whole Foods Market have embraced servant leadership. But what is servant leadership?

Greenleaf’s book Essentials says:

“The servant-leader is servant first… Becoming a servant-leader 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… The difference manifests itself in the care taken by the servant first to make sure that other people’s highest priority needs are being served.”

Do you seek to serve others first? If so, you’re on your way to being a servant leader.


About Jason Reynolds
I'm a reporter, blogger, husband and aspiring author. When I'm not working, spending time with the family, or reading (which is quite a bit), I enjoy cooking, traveling, photography and wrangling my family's cats and chickens.

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