Tips for Developing Servant Leadership

Most organizations have a hierarchy structure similar to the military with the general at the top and the soldiers at the bottom. More progressive organizations and their leaders turn the traditional organization upside down. Instead of the President or the CEO being at the top, that person goes at the bottom, supporting the organization above it.

The front line workers are the ones who generate and deliver the products and services your customers pay for. Therefore, everyone else in the organization should view their role as supporting those front line employees to maximize value.

Servant Leaders have a service-oriented mindset so they can support the needs of their team.

Here are three tips to developing Servant Leadership:

#1 Remember you work for them

Your ego as a leader might make you think that your employees work for you instead of the other way around. That kind of thinking will cause you to give orders and be more autocratic in your leadership approach.

By viewing yourself as a Servant Leader, you’ll take a participative coaching approach and your team will feel empowered instead of micro-managed.

#2 Be supportive

A participant at one of our classes said he wanted a boss who was helping not harping. So instead of nagging your people, show them your support by getting answers to their questions. Provide the information and resources they need to succeed.

Use positive reinforcement to support any improvement in performance because that will increase the confidence of your team and lead to additional gains in performance.

#3 Advocate for your team

As a Servant Leader you’ll view yourself as an advocate of your team. Being an advocate means that you will speak on behalf of your team and get answers, resources and decisions from other departments. You gain a tremendous amount of credibility and respect from your team when they see you getting them what is needed to achieve success.

Having a servant leadership mindset will create an environment of mutual trust and respect.

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