MidAmerica Nazarene University
According to Robert K. Greenleaf, servant leadership “is a philosophy and set of practices that enriches the lives of individuals, builds better organizations and ultimately creates a more just and caring world”. Participative leaders are ones who accept input from group members when decision making and problem solving, but the leader has the final say when choices are made. This style of leadership motivates and encourages team members which leads to more effective and accurate decisions. Participative and servant leadership primarily focus on the members of the group giving them the majority control over the decision making process, each one collaborates together as a group and the final decision is made by the leader/manager. The article, Servant Leadership in Nursing: A framework for developing sustainable research capacity in nursing, describes servant leadership as a “service-oriented approach that focuses on valuing and developing people, and offers a participatory and collaborative framework which builds creative and productive research communities (Jackson, 2007)”. There are ten characteristics associated with servant leaders which are listening, empathy, healing, awareness, persuasion, conceptualism, foresight, stewardship, growth, and community building. Servant leadership is described as “an altruistic model for leadership that can stimulate change at personal and organizational levels (Jackson, 2007)”. Servant leaders are strong and resilient leaders who are characterized by compassion, flexibility, supportiveness, inclusiveness, and encouraging environments demonstrated by teamwork and value of constituents. Leadership is viewed as an opportunity where influence is exerted through persuasive practices. In conclusion, the need for strong, effective and nurturing research leadership is needed to mitigate the negative aspects of organizational culture and to develop a positive research environment. The article, Authentic Leaders Creating Healthy Work Environments for Nursing Practice, discusses four major concepts. Firstly, it defines what an authentic leader is and the attributes of such leader. Secondly, the proposed mechanisms of authentic leaders for a healthy work environment. Thirdly, it creates a practical guide to understanding and becoming an authentic leader and the advancement of such leader. Lastly, a research agenda proposing the advancement of authentic leadership in the nursing practice. A healthy work environment is defined as “a work setting in which policies, procedures, and systems are designed so that employees are able to meet organizational objectives and achieve personal satisfaction in their work (Shirey, 2006)”. A healthy work environment is maintained by five key factors balance, creating and sustaining trust, managing change, involving workers in the decision making process and using knowledge management to establish the organization and a learning organization. Authentic leadership describes a responsible individual who is genuine, trustworthy, believable and reliable. In conclusion, an authentic leader is essential to the creation and structure of a healthy work environment and create a lasting professional view. Servant leadership can be demonstrated by being honest and trustworthy. Honesty and trustworthiness are easier said than done. When you keep your word and commit to someone that you will or are going to do something, in turn that person respects you and a bond has been created and vice versa. Once a bond has been established then people feel more at ease when it comes to communication with you as an individual. Another way that you can demonstrate servant leadership is by demonstrating integrity with everyone that you come in contact with. Integrity is more than just a noun it is an action which gains you respect from individuals who are unknowing to your character. Conclusion
References: Blanchard, K. (1997). Situational leadership. A new paradigm of leadership: Visions of excellence for 21st century organizations, 149-153.
Greenleaf, R. K. (1973). The servant as leader. Center for Applied Studies.
Jackson, D. (2008). Servant Leadership in Nursing: A framework for developing sustainable research capacity in nursing. Collegian, 15(1), 27-33.
Shirey, M. R. (2006). Authentic leaders creating healthy work environments for nursing practice. American Journal of Critical Care, 15(3), 256-267.
Yoder-Wise, P. (2011). Leading and managing in nursing. (5th ed.). St. Louis, MO: Mosby- Elsevier.
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