Servant Leadership

How To Be A True Servant Leader?

There are plenty of leadership styles that you can choose from to enhance the edge of your team in the corporate marketplace. If you follow my blogs, you will know that I have examined many of them.

From years of research and experience its clear to me that the very best leaders have one key quality over others – they will always put their teams first ahead of any ego or delusion of grandeur they might have. These leaders stay in control through winning hearts and minds.

Servant leadership is exactly what it states, it’s a style in which you lead by putting the needs of your team first. Servant leaders believe that when their team members feel personally and professionally fulfilled, they produce higher quality work more efficiently and productively.

What are the characteristics of great servant leaders?

  • Motivates their team. Creating a work environment where employees feel empowered to contribute and motivated to be engaged is critical to being an effective servant leader.
  • Has excellent communication skills. Transparency, active listening and empathy are all important factors to servant leadership. These traits help you understand the views and opinions of your team, and to lead in a way that shows their opinion matters. Trusting your team with relevant and current business information proves you respect them.
  • Cares about their team on a personal level. Servant leaders have the ability to view their team members as more than just employees. A feeling of happiness and fulfilment in their personal lives contributes to their success in professional life too. Servant leaders make it a priority to show their employees they care, and help them with personal related issues when they can.
  • Committed to helping their team develop professionally. Successful leaders help their team members also rise to leadership, they do this through being an example of success and providing opportunities to grow and develop.
  • Encourages collaboration and engagement. Value the opinions of everyone and encourage them to share those opinions by actively and regularly contributing to the team.

How to become a servant leader?

  • Lead by example. Always lead by example – you should be willing to undertake any task yourself that you ask of your team. When they see you are willing to invest the same amount of work and effort they do, it helps to motivate them and engages their commitment to work.
  • Show people why their job is important. When employees feel that what they do is important to the overall success of the organization, they usually feel more empowered and are willing to work harder to help the company succeed. Servant leaders should try to make sure their team members know why the work they do is important and how their work directly affects the overall success of the company.
  • Encourage collaboration and employee engagement. Servant leaders are great at making their teams feel their voices matter. When you take steps to encourage your team to work together and to suggest new ideas to help improve the organization, it shows them you care about what they have to say and appreciate their contributions. This can motivate your team to put their best effort and result in higher quality work.
  • Help your team grow and develop. Servant leaders don’t only focus on being great leaders themselves, they are also interested in helping their team members become great leaders. You should try to encourage your team members to participate in continuing education and employee development programs to help them continue to expand their knowledge and skills. You can also try to encourage team members to take an active leadership role during group projects. Team members who know you are committed to their professional growth are more likely to listen to suggestions you make to help improve their work.
  • Care for your team members personally. Being empathetic and offering advice when you can, may help create a more positive work-life balance for your employees and help them cope with personal stress. When your team members feel that they matter as an individual and not just as an employee, they are more likely to be happy when coming to work and to produce better quality.
  • Ask for feedback. Finally, servant leaders should always be looking for how they can improve their own leadership and contribute to their team. You can do this by encouraging your team members to provide feedback when they have an idea on how you can improve your work or on how the company can improve overall. Try to make your team members feel empowered to come to you with suggestions at any time and regularly ask for feedback from people who don’t naturally provide it.

Servant leadership is certainly not doing as your teams say, on the contrary, they follow your lead but feel empowered and engaged to do more. If you practice this well it can inturn not only lead to a well motivated team but your job becoming much easier in the long run.

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Hi! I`m Chris Webb, I live in the South East and started Leaders Retail Consultancy in 2019. Before freelancing, I was a senior retail leader for a number of the UK’s top retailers gaining experience over 23 glorious years. When I am not coaching I enjoy spending time with the family or in the gym.

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