In the Service of Others | NAWBO


In the Service of Others

In the words of Mahatma Gandhi, “be the change you wish to see in the world.”

To me, November conjures up thoughts and the smell of pumpkin, the rustle of leaves, flag football on the front lawn, family, and Thanksgiving – a time to remember the blessings in our lives, and to think and act toward those who are less fortunate.  I encourage everyone to try and volunteer or donate to the many organizations that support the underserved and bring some extra cheer where it might not have happened without you.  

Because sometimes when we are in the service of others, we not only give them benefit, but we find we ourselves are enriched.  When I started my company, one of my founding principles was based on servant leadership, creating an environment where each employee is a valuable and valued resource.  We are committed to being together 8 to 9 hours a day to treat one another with respect, to listen, collaborate and work toward the overall good of the organization. 

In the definitive Servant Leadership: A Journey into the Nature of Legitimate Power and Greatness 25th Anniversary Edition, by Robert Greenleaf and Larry Spears, Greenleaf notes that  “every organization has a chart that shows who we are to each other, but servant leadership turns the chart upside down by focusing on how we are for each other.”  

The book also describes the following fundamental traits that are key to the development of the Servant Leader:

  1. Listening—the servant leader actively listens to the needs of staff and helps to support them in their decision making.
  2. Empathy—the servant leader seeks first to understand the needs of others and empathize with them.
  3. Healing—the servant leader helps staff to resolve their problems, negotiate their conflicts, and encourage the formation of a healing environment.
  4. Awareness—the servant leader has a high degree of emotional intelligence and self-awareness. He or she views situations from a holistic, systems perspective.
  5. Persuasion—the servant leader does not use coercive power to influence or persuade but instead uses their powers of persuasion.
  6. Conceptualization—the servant leader sees beyond the day-to-day operations of their unit or department. They can focus on the bigger picture and build a personal vision.
  7. Foresight—the servant leader can envision the likely outcome of a situation and is proactive in attempts to create the best consequences.
  8. Stewardship—the servant leader is a good steward of the resources and staff that they are given. They feel an obligation to help and serve others without focusing on their own rewards.
  9. Commitment to the growth of people—the servant leader is inclusive of all staff and sees value in everyone. They attempt to maximize the strengths of all who work with them.
  10. Building community—the servant leader recognizes the importance of building a sense of community among staff.

Consider these 10 distinctive servant leadership qualities.  You might find that you feel better about what you do and why you do it, and you just might find it can impact your bottom line. 

Please join us at one of our many upcoming Connects this month. If you’re not sure what you should be doing in NAWBO, let us help direct you to a Mastermind group or Connects in your area. The NAWBO community is all about servant leadership, where everyone is working in an inclusive and accepting environment.  Let us help you find your place at the table; there is always room for one more!  And one more and one more....

I wish everyone a happy and healthy month.

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