The 21st century has brought much in the way of turmoil and change to the world of business. A global pandemic has also contributed to the development of a “new normal” in every aspect of society: economically, socially, professionally, educationally, and personally. As a consequence, ways of doing business that were once universally accepted now seem outdated and inflexible in an age where knowledge drives economies, technology is king,  and socially responsible corporate attitudes influence stakeholders.

With such changes have come new priorities and responsibilities and it is in this environment that the theory of servant leadership has flourished as a management style for the redefined business world of today, one that can serve as a cornerstone for organizations wishing to build corporate or entrepreneurial structures based on stewardship, empowerment and trust.

This age-old question is still debated as we examine whether servant leadership is an innate personality trait, a learned behavior, or a combination of both. Authentic servant leadership is based on the premise of serving others and putting others’ interests before personal interests (Greenleaf, 1977). If this premise is true, then many will be unable to practice servant leadership due to a lack of the prerequisite attributes of a servant leader. 

Robert K. Greenleaf coined the term servant leadership in 1970. Although it has taken four decades for his philosophies to have a real influence on mainstream management thinking, a number of companies riding high in the Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For have adopted his principles to great effect by building cultures in which employees come first and leaders exist to facilitate their growth collectively and individually.

The servant leader should feel a responsibility towards employees as individuals and must have a sense of stewardship for them and the organization as a whole. Companies adopting servant leadership within their organizational culture give a lot of attention to developing environments and support structures that foster high levels of employee satisfaction.

What are the qualities of a born leader?

  • They find meaning and purpose in their work
  • They are great listeners
  • They have balance, and don’t over work themselves
  • They are forever learning
  • They possess confidence
  • They possess confidence
  • They value and UNITE others   

By improving the right skills, you can learn to be a better leader; one who serves others.