Traditionalists might argue that leadership is all about issuing orders with clarity and fairness. It’s more about showing people what they’re capable of, mapping that to your company’s direction and then letting them go to work.
It might seem counter intuitive because it cedes some perceived control. But in the end, it produces greater results. It’s a philosophical investment, requiring a commitment and belief that the payoff will come. In my years of servant leadership, I’ve seen it pay off in spades.
In the end, the servant leader — the one who knows the troops on a deeper level — truly wins. As Greenleaf himself has said, “The difference manifests itself in the care taken by the servant first to make sure that other people’s highest priority needs are being served. The best test, and difficult to administer, is: Do those served grow as persons?” Specificity in servant leadership is important. Knowing personalized details of those you lead, especially those who show personal motivation, can make a big difference.