Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The Credo of Servant Leadership

Robert Greenleaf, the "father" of contemporary Servant Leadership Theory wrote a short article on Spirituality as Leadership in Studies in Formative Spirituality (February, 1982) in which he provides his credo for Servant Leadership:

"I believe that caring for persons, the more able and the less able serving each other, is what makes a good society. Most caring was once person to person. Now much of the of it is mediated through institutions - often large, powerful, impersonal; not always competent; sometime corrupt. If a better society is to be built, one more just and more caring and providing opportunity for people to grow, the most effective and economical way, while supportive of the social order, is to raise the performance as servant of as many institutions as possible by new voluntary regenerative forces initiated within them by committed individuals: servants. Such servants may never predominate or even be numerous; but their influence may form a leaven that makes possible a reasonably civilized society."

It is interesting that he links the welfare of society with servant hood. I still wonder if we are ready for a leadership approach that finds its highest expression in service.