Servant Leadership

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Question 1. What are the characteristics of servant leadership as propagated by Greenleaf (1970)? Give examples of servant leaders that you may know.

1. Listening – A critical communication tool, necessary for accurate communication and for actively demonstrating respect for others. According to Greenleaf, “Only a true natural servant automatically responds to any problem by listening first” (1970).

2. Empathy – The ability to mentally project one’s own consciousness into that of another individual. Greenleaf wrote, “The servant always accepts and empathizes, never rejects”, and “Men grow taller when those who lead them empathize, and when they are accepted for who they are…”(1970).

3. Healing – Greenleaf defined healing as “to
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First one is servant-leadership overcomes many of the inherent flaws found in leadership approaches that are rooted in power. Such flaws arise because, according to this [power] model, leadership is all about the attainment, exercise and retention of power. The boss has only one goal: to ensure that people do what he or she wants. It consists mostly of handy strategies to win. Ethics and morals do not come into their vocabulary or, at best, only as an afterthought. (Trompenaars & Voerman, 2009).
Second one is followers of servant-leadership principles take a different approach. Rather than using power to control and coerce, they use it consciously in order to serve. Specific characteristics of servant-leadership include listening, persuasion, stewardship, and community building, all of which are gaining traction in today’s business world (Spears, 1998). DeGraaf, Tilley, and Neal (2004) “Both customers and staff today want leaders who will listen and empower, rather than dominate and tell them what to do”. For instance, Colleen Barret, president of Southwest Airlines, used servant-leadership characteristics to motivate 32,000 employees and kept 96.4 million customers happy (McGee-Cooper, Looper, & Trammel, 2008). In conclusion, characteristics of servant-leadership are used in two different ways in corporate social responsibility. On the one hand the leaders exceed their authority, and on the other hand, the other
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