November 18, 2018

Servant Leadership and Other Leadership Philosophy Models

Interesting Article

'Servant Leadership' and How Its 6 Main Principles Can Boost the Success of Your Startup

Thomas Smale
Founder of FE International
January 24, 2018

Robert Greenleaf's influential 1970 essay "The Servant As Leader" in 1970.
Adam Grant, professor at the Wharton School of Business, wrote in his  book Give and Take that research shows servant leaders are more productive and more highly regarded by employees. Servant leadership has also been implemented by incredibly successful companies like Whole Foods, UPS and Ritz Carlton.

What are servant leadership's main principles?
Six, identified by author-writer Larry Spears (who established a center on servant leadership),

1. Empathy
2. Awareness
3. Building community
Leader or the organization as a community builder.
Leader (say CEO) builds a community where both employees and customers can thrive (generalized into all stakeholders).
4. Persuasion
5. Conceptualization
6. Growth

Spears' (1998) 10 characteristics of servant leadership are (a) listening, (b) empathy, (c) healing, (d) awareness, (e) persuasion, (f) conceptualization, (g) foresight, (h) stewardship, (i) commitment, and (j) community building. Spears (1998) argued that servant leadership is tied to the character exhibited by leaders in their essential traits.

 Laub (1999), did a Delphi study. In the Delphi process, 60 characteristics of servant leaders were identified and eventually clustered into six key areas: (a) valuing people, (b) developing people, (c) building community, (d) displaying authenticity, (e) providing leadership, and (f) sharing leadership. For Laub (1999), these are the essential behaviors that characterize what servant leaders do and they answer to how servant leaders place the good of those led over their own self-interest.

Patterson's (2003) model of servant leadership includes the following dimensions as the essential characteristics of servant leadership: (a) agapáo love, (b) humility, (c) altruism, (d) vision, (e) trust, (f) empowerment, and (g) service.

Thus Spears' (1998) model of servant leadership focuses primarily on the character exhibited by servant leaders and Laub's (1999) model focuses primarily on the behaviors of servant leaders, Patterson's (2003) model provides includes both the dimensions of character and behavior.

Servant versus Self-Sacrificial Leadership: A Behavioral Comparison of Two Follower-Oriented Leadership Theories

Jeffrey A. Matteson
Regent University

Justin A. Irving
Bethel University

International Journal of Leadership Studies, Volume 2, Issue 1
An online refereed journal sponsored by
Regent University, School of Business & Leadership
1333 Regent University Drive, Virginia Beach, VA 23464

Servant Leadership and Other Models of Leadership  (Adopted essay) - Reference needs to be given

There are measures in place to assess servant leadership. It  is important first to  to understand how it differs from other models.

There have been a multitude of other leadership philosophies, ideas and theories.

Dirk van Dierendonck (2011) noted that servant leadership could be compared to seven other leadership theories: transformational leadership, authentic leadership, ethical leadership, Level 5 leadership, empowering leadership, spiritual leadership, and self-sacrificing leadership.

Transformational Leadership.

Components of a transformational leader are idealized influence, inspirational motivation, intellectual stimulation, and individualized consideration (Varol & Varol, 2012). The transformational leader shows concern for the follower, but does not place an emphasis on serving the follower (Stone, Russell, and Patterson, 2003). In a study conducted by Parolini, Patterson, and Winston (2009), over 500 people in various organizations ranging  from churches and non-profits to corporations and academic institutions. The  study revealed  that the perceived difference between  transformational leaders and servant leaders was the focus on the needs of the individuals instead of the organization. 

Authentic Leadership.

Authentic leadership  grew in popularity with Bob George’s book, Authentic Leadership (2003). Both servant leadership and authentic leadership place a strong value in serving and empowering others. These philosophies focus on establishing relationships with people and rely on follower’s strengths instead of weaknesses (Nayab, 2010; Ladkin & Taylor, 2010; Politis, 2013). The difference between the two styles is the approach. Servant leaders want to do what is right, while authentic leaders are more concerned with being real (Nayab, 2010f; Avolio &Gardener, 2005). There are lists of characteristics for servant leadership that mold the leader in his journey. Authentic leadership does not have a set of attributes specified so far. There are two attributes that Van Dierendock (2011) discussed as an overlap in these philosophies: authenticity and humility.

Ethical Leadership.

Ethical leadership is a normative approach to leading others. The philosophy, according to Brown, Trevino, and Harrison (2005), stresses a standardized viewpoint of appropriate behavior in both actions and relationships. Servant leadership shares many attributes with ethical leadership such as caring for people, trust, integrity, and serving others (Dierendonck, 2011), but they differ from a developmental aspect. Ethical leadership focuses on the correct actions and directives of the leader within the organization, not so much how individuals can meet their goals personally (Brown, et al, 2005). There are three characteristics that these two styles do not share: authenticity, interpersonal acceptance, and providing direction (Dierendonck, 2011).

Level 5 Leadership.

In Jim Collins’ seminal work, Good to Great, he outlined his five levels in his hierarchy of leadership capabilities (2001). The levels are Executive, Effective Leader, Competent Manager, Contributing Team Member, and Highly Capable Individual. The highest level in the hierarchy identifies a leader who represents a balance of humility and professional will, which incorporates sound business results and vision for the future. The lowest level leader uses his talent, knowledge, and skills to make contributions to the organization (2001). The qualities at level 5 overlap with two servant leadership characteristics: humility and providing direction (Dierendonck, 2011). A major factor is the creation on the Level 5 Leadership model was shareholder value in terms of stock value, which is a major difference between this style and servant leadership. Three attributes missing from Level 5 that are seen in servant leadership are authenticity, interpersonal acceptance, and stewardship.

Empowering Leadership.

Empowering leadership is a leadership style grounded in social cognitive theory (Bandura, 1986) and the core attribute is the employee’s perspective and the leader’s actions (Dierendonck, 2011) to involve others. Self-direction and self-motivation are also key concepts for this philosophy according to Pearce and Sims (2002). There are obvious overlapping traits between servant leadership and empowering leadership. Servant leadership can be thought of  as an elaboration of empowering leadership. When addressing the additional five servant leadership characteristics of Dierendonck’s research of humility, authenticity, interpersonal acceptance, providing direction and stewardship, there is not an overt connection but an indirect expansion of all the traits (2011). The philosophy of servant leadership goes beyond the foundational ideas of this leadership type and encompasses a larger set of traits.

Spiritual Leadership.

Spiritual leadership and servant leadership share the goal to make one’s work meaningful and maximize followers’ strengths (Dierendonck, 2011). The framework of spiritual leadership combines the employee’s experiences with self-transcendence, community, and meaning in a workplace. The leadership style recognizes the experiences can be found in the employee’s organization (Pawar, 2008). The issue is a lack of behaviors associated with this philosophy because most of the research is built around the organization and not the leader (Dierendonck, 2011). There are similarities with the viewpoint of both types of leadership. Both encourage followers to find a sense of self through work and creating a community in the workplace (Fry, 2003). There is a more structured framework, which separates servant leadership from spiritual leadership (Fry et al, 2005).

Self-Sacrificing Leadership.

Charisma, legitimacy, and reciprocity are characteristics of a leader who subscribes to the self-sacrificing model (Choi & Mai-Dalton, 1999). Studies (De Cremer, 2006; De Cremer, Mayer, Schouten, & Bardes, 2009; Van Knippenberg & Van Knippenberg, 2005) reveal that these traits are indeed apparent with these types leaders. The followers of a self-sacrificing leader have a strong willingness to work together, motivated for pro-social behavior, and rate their leaders as effective (2005). Self-sacrificing leadership derives from transformational leadership and has a more organizational focus than a person focus (Matteson & Irving, 2005). The connection this style has with servant leadership is found with Greenleaf’s best test to make sure that those being lead also become servant-leaders themselves. Attributes they share are compassionate goals and supportive environment, but none of the six characteristics mentioned above are overlapping in this style.

All of the leadership models listed above have some similarities with servant leadership, but servant leadership also has unique attributes that allow it to stand on its own as a philosophy. We have to  understand the practical use of the characteristics and themes by studying organizations and situation. where servant leadership has been implemented.

Practice of  Servant Leadership

TD Industries is one of the first companies to actually practice servant leadership within a corporation (Spears, 2005). TD is based in Dallas, Texas and provides heating and plumbing contracts. The founder, Jack Lowe, Sr. read Greenleaf’s writings on the servant as leader and implemented managerial training in servant leadership as a result. Thirty years later, any employee at TD who supervises someone else must attend servant leader training. The fruit of the implementation for TD Industries has been a consistent spot on the Fortune magazine’s 100 Best Companies to Work for in America list (2005). From a corporate standpoint, TD does not stand alone in capitalizing on the benefit of servant leadership. Other large companies such as Synovus Financial, Southwest Airlines, and Popeye’s Louisiana Kitchen hold employee trainings and center their culture on servant leadership (2005).

Many companies that have been influenced in some way by servant leadership chose to focus more on the people that work for them as opposed to the “bottom line”.  These are corporations that make a concerted effort to be really good at what they do with an emphasis on relationship building, which is a characteristic of servant leadership.

Measurement of Servant leadership

Servant leadership has grown in popularity in the past five decades, but researchers have only been able to actually measure the term since around 2006. Measurement instruments such as Page and Wong’s Servant Leadership Profile (2000), Laub’s Organizational Leadership Assessment (2000), and Dennis and Bocarnea’s assessment instrument (2005) proved to be reliable in measuring different characteristics of a servant leader. These tools provide validity to the philosophy and established a foundation of reliability for future research. In an effort to conceptualize and measure the construct of servant leadership, Barbuto and Wheeler (2006) tested 11 dimensions of servant leadership to test “internal consistency, confirm factor structure, and assess convergent, divergent, and predictive validity” (p. 300). Many practical implications were derived from this study. It found a positive relationship between positive outcomes such as employee satisfaction and extra effort on their part. Additionally, the research showed a great infusion of emotional health, wisdom, and service-oriented attitudes (2006).


 Leader self-sacrifice and leadership effectiveness

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A Literature Review of Self-Sacrificial Leadership

November 17, 2018

Industry 4.0 - Research Papers and Thesis - Bibliography


Additive Manufacturing in 2040: Powerful Enabler - Disruptive Threat
Rand Corporation Report

Additive Manufacturing in Aerospace and Defence Sector
Prakash Panneerselvam
Journal of Defence Studies, Jan - March 2018, Vol. 12, No. 1, pp. 39-60

Benefits of Mass Customized Products: Moderating Role of Product Involvement and Fashion Inventiveness
Minjung Park, Jungmin Yoo.
Heliyon, 4, 2018

Big Data Challenges in Smart Manufacturing
Big Data Value Association Paper

Business Intelligence in Industry 4.0: State of the art and research opportunities
Fanny-Eve Bordeleau et al.
Proceedings of the 51st Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences 2018
pp. 3944-3953. 

November 12, 2018

4 MILLION PAGE VIEWS OR HITS for Management and Industrial Engineering Blogs

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10 November 2018

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18 September 2015

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