“The servant-leader is servant first… It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve, to serve first” (Greenleaf, 1977, p. 27). For the servant-leader, the needs of others will be the primary driver rather than meeting the needs of the individual themselves. In this paper, incorporating a leader interview, the student will highlight the interviewee’s responses to servant-leadership concepts and their impressions and experiences as a servant-leader. Background
The interviewee that was chosen for this paper was Kathy Krueger, high school counselor for the student’s son at Seattle Preparatory School. Seattle Preparatory is a Catholic, Jesuit high school for grades 9-12 with an enrollment of 700 students. Their mission statement is to “form discerning, transformational leaders who are intellectually competent, spiritually alive, open to growth, loving and committed to justice” ("Seattle Preparatory Mission Statement," “n.d.”). Ms. Krueger has been at Seattle Preparatory since 1970. She was first hired as a part-time teacher, providing instruction for Collegio (combined English, history, and theology class) and part-time counselor. Her current role has been to work with junior and senior students with a focus in college counseling. Prior to coming to Seattle Preparatory, Ms. Krueger began her teaching career in 1969 as a member of the Sisters of Holy Names Order. She left the convent in 1970 and taught at St. Aloysius Grade School in Spokane. In 1976, upon moving to Seattle, she began her high school teaching career. On Wednesday November 6, an in person interview was conducted with Ms. Krueger at Seattle Preparatory school. The interview was conducted over approximately one hour in length and consisted of fifteen questions. ( Appendix A) Discussion
“The natural servant, the person who is servant-first, is more likely to persevere and refine a particular hypothesis on what serves another’s highest priority needs than is the person who is leader-first and who later serves out of promptings of conscience or in conformity with normative expectations” (Greenleaf, 1977, p. 28). Prior to the interview beginning, servant leadership was reviewed with Ms. Krueger. A servant leader buts an emphasis on others first and serving them; leading is secondary. Those who want to be leaders first will most often be catering to their own egos and seeking power. Servant leadership cannot be something one turns on and off based on the situation, it has to be part of the person; it will be what you breathe day in and day through actions and words. “Servant leadership is more than a mere concept, a style, or a theory of leadership, but rather a distinct perspective, a philosophy, an emergent world view- a way of being in the world” (Horsman, 2013, p.4 ). The foundation of servant-leadership started through role modeling by her parents. K. Krueger (personal communication, November 6, 2013) “Each of us felt unconditional love... They imparted a lot of values, especially that we need to give back in service” (Appendix A). Ms. Krueger was interested in both service and education as a career. Two of her brothers entered the Jesuit order and she made the decision to enter the Holy Names Sisters’. After six years in the convent, one year before final vows, Ms. Krueger made the decision to leave the convent and continue to serve as a layperson. At that time in the Church, the understanding of lay ministry was beginning to form and not just members of the religious orders could be called for service but all people could be call to serve. K. Krueger (personal communication, November 6, 2013) “As a lay person, I am a companion with the Jesuits in their mission to teach young people to be loving, open to growth, intellectually competent, spiritually alive, loving, and committed to justice” (Appendix A). “Servant...
References: Greenleaf, R. K. (1977). Servant leadership: A journey into the nature of legitimate power and greatness (25th ed.). New York: Paulist Press.
Hesse, H. (1956). The journey to the East. (H. Ross Trans.) New York: Noonday Press
Method: Personal Communication
Date: November 6, 2013
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