So we all know there are many types of leadership styles. Generally speaking there are two extreme types of leadership: leader-first and servant-first
I’m on a mission to be a servant-leader, and grow other servant leaders. I’m going to define what a servant-leaders is and give you 3 easy ways to start your journey in servant leadership.
How many people here have heard the term servant-leader?
Traditional leadership generally looks like it’s powered by one person at the “top of the pyramid,”
By contrast, a servant-leader is someone who serves first.
The servant-leader shares power, puts the needs of others first and helps people develop and perform as highly as possible.
A servant leader asks questions like: Are the people I serve growing? While being served are they becoming healthier, wiser, freer, more autonomous?
A servant-leader focuses primarily on the growth and well-being of people and the communities to which they belong.
They add value to others.
By adding more value to others, you could have more influence, get paid more at my work. You can make more of a difference.
By adding value you’re leading in a way that inspires peak performance.
But here is the challenge. To be a servant leader you have to think differently, behave differently.
You have to learn how do you add value to others. How do you do that?
I’m going to give you three ways to add value to those around you.
And I want to think about this while I’m talking:
What is going on in your life right now that your trying to succeed at higher level. Is it in your work world? Your network? Your family life?
If you wanted to add more value how would you do it in that senerio?
- First, ask better questions. Yes, questions… What? Why? How? Who? And, how do we measure that?
As you ask questions you understand things better. As you understand things better you gain the understanding of how to add more value.
If you’re in a meeting your goal is to ask the people in that meeting
What are the goals/outcomes? What are we really after?
If you are the person that understands the objectives and outcomes then you’re going to be the smartest person in the room. We’ve gotten very good at tasks and spreadsheets at a small level, but we don’t look at the big picture. If you understand the larger objectives that people have you know to how to add more value.
Try to understand the “who” of any given situation. Who would it effect? Who would implement things? The audience “The who”. Who fillfills what roles? If we can’t who can?
What are the capabilities? Can we do or can’t do the objective? Do we know how to do this? Does our team have the knowledge skills abilities that could execute this? Who does?
Measurement… how will we know if we’ve done well? What does success look like?
The biggest thing of adding value is helping people think differently and we can do that through asking better questions.
If you are the person asking a better quality of questions. You will be leading because you are helping them think in ways they haven’t thought before. Everyone will want your help in bouncing off ideas. You will become an influencer.
- Second, be the connector.
Be the person that’s always connecting people with other folks.
If you are the connector your adding value to everyone else. You know who is good at what. You know people and their goals and outcomes.
This is about you keeping memory in mind of what are people capabilities and goals. You know others that help them achieve their goals and connect them. It’s a great way to add value.
- Third, contributing at your best and highest level. Every project that you do. Ask yourself, is what I’ve created distinct? Is it different? Is it my most excellent contribution? Is there heart in here? Did I think about this in a service mindset? Is there emotion in this?
Part of adding value is helping people reconnect in the emotional side of their lives. I know that sounds simple in some ways. A lot of what we experience today is so technically driving. It’s our job, if we want to add a lot of value, to bring back in the humanity, bring back in the emotion, the color the flair, the joy, the vibrancy. The real hues of human emotion that are often missing from everything. If you bring that back in to everything your contributing. You’ll go to a level of adding value that most people don’t understand.
People won’t follow you because you’re the person that asks the best questions. People won’t follow you because you know the most people.
People will follow you because you are an inspirer and a leader because they can see within you that you have true energy, true engagement, true emotion to the things your contributing.
If you do these things over and over again. You will not only add more value to your network. Create more value at your job or with your boss. You’ll feel alive.
Add value to other people…
- Ask better questions
- Be a connector
- Contribute at your highest level
I’m on a mission to be a servant leader.