Servant leadership is a common word used in the discussions of an effective leadership system. Servant leadership is the leadership system whereby leaders meets the needs of their followers by showing compassion and ethics while ignoring any form of ego and personal goal. Servant leadership is a selfless leadership system that was demonstrated by Nelson Mandela as he directed his nation through resolution after many years of tribal or racial apartheid.
James A. Autry, states that servant leadership is the right way of leadership. By becoming an expert servant leadership, one needs to have emotional, psychological, and spiritual fulfillment, not only for one’s self alone, but for everyone involved also. Servant Leadership boosts productivity and encourages creativity. James A. Autry teaches that servant leadership can be a guiding light helping one discover how to maintain one’s spiritual focus in order to provide guidance during conflict, training of other managers that are implementing servant leadership, and resolving morale problems.
The Five Ways of Being Servant leadership as stated by James A. Autry.
As a servant leader, you must:
• Be Authentic: As a servant leader, this simply means; you must be yourself. And for you as a leader to be yourself, you must study yourself closely and know yourself very well. This process requires a lot of silence, prayer or self-exploration and meditation, it is more than just being truthful.
• Be Vulnerable. As a servant leader, you must be honest about the way you feel in the context of work, simply by being transparent and candid about your doubts, you must have concerns about your followers or employee, and your performance. You must possess the courage to say “I’m sorry” and also mean it with all your heart.
• Be Accepting: As a servant leader, this is very important. You must be able to accept the ideas of your followers or to employees as valid for discussion and review, this does not mean that you blindly accept everyone’s ideas without proper discussion or judgment.
• Be Present: Be fully available at all times. You must be available in order to access your values and implement them in the job at hand. By doing this, you are empowering your followers to be more confident when taking their own actions.
• Be Useful: Always be at the service of others. Ensure that your employees get enough resources needed to complete the current task by the best possible means.
Autry states that an organization and its leaders must be loyal and transparent to their employees and this can be achieved by being honest and trustworthy, treating people not as numbers but as individuals, rapidly responding to special needs appropriately, providing resources needed to perform task, and operating with full integrity with employees.