The Four Domains of Servant Leadership
Who is the greatest leader in the history of the world? Who would you choose? Why did you choose this person? For me, the greatest leader in the history of the world is Jesus. Most leaders today do not think of Jesus as being the greatest leader of all time because they allow religion and the separation of church and state to taint their perspective. If leadership is defined as nothing more or nothing less than influence, then who has had more influence on our world than Jesus? Jesus lived over 2,000 years ago and we are still talking about him. We are still feeling the impact of his influence. What was it about Jesus that made him such an effective leader? Ken Blanchard has identified for keys to Jesus’ effectiveness. They are:
The Heart represents your intentions and motivations as a leader. Jesus’ intention and motivation was to be a servant leader not a self-serving leader. He came to serve others and not to be served. Every leader has their motivation for being a leader. Why are you a leader? Are you a self-serving leader or a servant leader? My motivation for being a leader is to help people and organizations get healthy. How do I do that? I invest in other leaders to help them become better leaders. I influence organizations to grow and impact their communities.
The Head represents your beliefs about leadership and influencing others. Jesus believed that servant leadership was a way of life. He taught this to his disciples. He lived it out by laying his life down on the cross. What are your beliefs and assumptions about leadership? What is your leadership point of view? What are you modeling for your team and followers? For me, my leadership point of view is that I am a servant leader. I am to serve those on my team by pointing them to Jesus. Our lives are spent pointing people toward someone or something. For me, I choose to point people to Jesus.
The Hands represents your leadership behavior. Jesus not only had the right vision, but he was involved in doing the right things. Your behaviors will align with your beliefs. You may not have a clearly define point of leadership which you can articulate to others, however your behaviors will reveal your point of leadership. What are your behaviors as a leader? How would people on your team define your leadership? My leadership style is to be very team-oriented. I value what is often referred to as “collective IQ.” Collective IQ means that no one is as smart as all of us. In other words, the team possesses a stronger IQ than a single individual. I believe every team should have a clearly defined purpose that is common, clear, and compelling.
The Habits represent how you are being replenished or renewed daily. Jesus found renewal in solitude, prayer, and investing in his disciples. It’s important as a leader to know what helps you to be your best and which activities cause you to “shut down.” What are the activities that help you to be at your best? What activities drain you? For me, I have taken the time to identify six activities in each category and I have rank ordered them as well. In addition, I have evaluated the current state of each activity. For example, my relationship with God, my devotion time, time I spend in solitude, praying to God is the number one activity that helps me to be my best. On a scale of 1 (healthy) to 5 (unhealthy) I rated my current state as a two with an arrow pointing toward 1 because my time with God is growing stronger each day. An activity that depletes me or puts on the brakes in my life is negativity. I cannot hang around negative people or be exposed to negative situations. It brings my creativity and energy level to a screeching halt. Currently I don’t have a lot of negativity in my life. So this arena is good at the moment.
What are your thoughts? Which domain is your strongest? Which domain needs some attention? What are your keys to being effective as a leader?