Grand Canyon University
MGT 420 – Org. Behavior & Management
October 17, 2011
Although the notion of servant leadership has been recognized in leadership literature since Burns' (1978) and Greenleaf's (1977) publications, the movement has gained momentum only recently. Bowman (1997) argues that to date there is only anecdotal evidence to support a commitment to an understanding of servant leadership.
For example, Spears' (1995) identification of ten characteristics of servant leadership (i.e. listening, empathy, healing, awareness, persuasion, conceptualization, foresight, stewardship, commitment to the growth of people, and building community) is based solely on his readings of Greenleaf's essays, and is not grounded in solid research studies. This paper will attempt to examine the philosophical foundation of servant leadership by extracting several value-laden principles drawn from Greenleaf's and Jesus Christ's representation of the concept.
This will be accomplished by responding to the following questions: a) "Although servant leadership is often associated with the Bible and Jesus Christ, it is totally compatible with most religions and theories of philosophy". Using any two religions or philosophies, explain whether you agree or disagree with the statement above by applying Greenleaf's characteristics of servant leadership as the criteria for your evaluation. b) Describe one attribute or capacity of servant leadership, and provide a practical example of when you have seen a leader demonstrate that capacity. Describe the impact the leader's behavior had on the situation; and c) Explain the importance of self-awareness and emotional intelligence and the role they play in enabling you as a leader to model the capacities of characteristics of servant leadership.
I agree that Greenleaf’s definition of servant leadership is directly associated with the concept of charismatic leadership, which is located in
References: Bass B. & Avolio, B. (1994); Improving Organizational effectiveness, Thousand Oaks, CA. Sage Publications. Burns, J. M. (1978) Leadership, New York: Harper and Row Greenleaf, R.K Greenleaf, R. K. (1991). The servant as leader. Indianapolis, IN. The Robert K. Greenleaf Center Goldie Santiago, 2000 Holy Bible Leonard, Beauvais, and Scholl, 1995; Sosik and Dworakivsky, (1998) Patterson, K. (2003), “Servant leadership: a theoretical model”, unpublished doctoral dissertation, Graduate School of Business, Regent University. Yukl, G. (1998), Leadership in Organizations, 4th ed., Prentice-Hall, Inc., Upper Saddle River, NJ.