“If your actions inspire others to dream more and learn more, do better and become more, you’re a leader.” – John Quincy AdamsWhen Nathan, my husband, and I founded TeamGantt we decided to break with tradition and try a new approach. We care more about being part the team and setting up people for success than making sure everyone knows who the boss is.
This is why servant leadership has become our preferred style of leadership.
Let’s take a closer view at servant leadership and the 10 characteristics that make a leader a servant leader.
What is servant leadership?
Servant leadership is a management style that puts the team’s well-being and growth before the leader’s ambitions. A servant leader, unlike traditional leaders, is focused on developing and coaching individuals, and not just achieving organizational goals.
Robert Greenleaf is the originator of servant leadership. He described servant leadership as follows in his 1970 essay, “The Servant as Leader.”
“Servant-leader is servant first… It starts with the natural feeling of one wanting to serve, and to serve first.” Many companies view employees as cogs in the wheel that exist to help the company achieve its goals. Leaders are taskmasters who give authority and don’t care about how work is done. Servant leadership is a different kind of leadership that puts people before power.
Ten key principles for servant leadership
What does it take to be a servant-leader? These core characteristics are shared by servant leaders. These 10 principles will help you put servant leadership to use with your team.
1. Listening
Serving others is the core of servant leadership. Listen to your team members and give them your full attention. This is a simple way to show your appreciation and make your team feel valued.
2. Empathy
Empathy is a complex topic. However, servant leadership boils down to getting to know your people. Learn about their personalities and what they do well. This will allow you to shine and help your team members turn their weaknesses into strengths.
3. Healing
You may have a team member who came to you from a bad job.
Don’t worry, it’s not as difficult as you might think. It’s as easy as creating a work environment that is healthy and has work-life balance. It’s about giving people the tools to succeed so that they feel valued members of the team.
4. Self-awareness
I’ve already spoken about the importance of understanding your team’s strengths and weaknesses. It’s also important to reflect on your own shortcomings and strengths.
Take stock of your strengths and weaknesses and determine how you can fit in the overall team. You can then use your strengths and weaknesses to benefit the company and the team. Recognizing your limitations can help you see the opportunities to maximize your team’s strengths.
The easiest way to create a project plan
In just 10 minutes, you can create a beautiful project plan. You can switch between gantt and calendar views with a single click.
Get your free planPlanned to be a better leader
It’s easier to be a leader if you can see the bigger picture of where your work is going. TeamGantt provides the tools you need to lead with confidence.
Try TeamGantt NowTry TeamGantt Now5. Persuasion
Persuasion may be characterized by slick sales tactics. We’re not talking about that.
Serving leaders use persuasion and persuasiveness to build consensus and gain buy-in from their teams. This gives everyone a stake in the success of the team.
6. Conceptualization
As a leader and as a company, you must know where you are going. How else can you create a positive environment for your team?