Servant Leadership: Principles
“Leadership: What Others Are Saying”
by Lloyd Elder, Th.D., adapted from SkillTrack®
1:1 - Exploring the Journey
The leadership journey continues in association with others; that is its very
nature. However, it is also the working principle of the following paragraphs.
You are encouraged to put your own leadership experience and ideas alongside
those hammered out by others from many walks of life. This may be merely a
reading introduction to selected authorities in the field of leadership. Or
it could become a serious examination of key, valid, leadership concepts for
your leadership development. It is not intended or recommended simply to copy
what others are writing, but a workshop process to ponder and shape your own
understand of leadership.
Here’s how it works, and works, and works.
Read thoughtfully through the list: read, learn, compare,
even argue with the viewpoints.
Review each definition and select key concepts that may
be, or become, part of your own leadership definition.
Prepare your own working draft of leadership. Take your
time, but sharpen it later.
Select five or six elements of leadership for your continuing
practice of ministry; acting now reinforces significant learning.
Apply these to specific leadership situations; take them
home to your own life and family.
- Anderson and Jones--The Management of Ministry
Broadly speaking, leadership can be regarded as the capacity to bring
people together in the accomplishment of common goals (p. 78). Reflection:
- John W. Gardner--On Leadership
Leadership is the process of persuasion or example by which an individual
(or leadership team) induces a group to pursue objectives held by the leader
or shared by the leader and his or her followers (p. 1). Reflection:
- Jay Conger--Harvard Business School
(as quoted in Robert Cooper’s Executive EQ)
Leaders who garner the greatest future support will increase their capacity
for emotional expressiveness [emotional intelligence], a key ingredient in
purpose, persuasion, and inspiration (p. 68). Reflection:
- Steven R. Covey--Principle-Centered Leadership
Principle-centered leaders of character work with competence on the basis
of natural principles built into the center of every part of their lives
(see p. 25). Principle-centered leadership is practiced from the inside
out on four master principle levels:
• Trustworthiness at the personal level based on character and competence
• Trust at the interpersonal level (p. 31)
• Empowerment at the managerial level (p. 155)
• Alignment at the organizational level (p. 155)
- Daniel Goleman--Working with Emotional Intelligence
Leadership: Inspiring and Guiding Individuals and Groups (p. 183)
• Articulate and arouse enthusiasm for a shared vision and mission.
• Step forward to lead as needed, regardless of position.
• Guide the performance of others while holding them accountable.
• Lead by example.
- Hersey and Blanchard--Management of Organizational Behavior
Leadership is the process of influencing the activities of an individual
or group in efforts toward goal achievement in a given situation . . . in
essence, leadership involves accomplishing goals with and through people
(p. 83). Reflection:
- John Maxwell--Developing the Leader Within You
Leadership is influence. That’s it. Nothing more; nothing less.
. . . Leadership is the ability to obtain followers. . . . Management is the
process of assuring that the program and objectives of the organization are
implemented. Leadership, on the other hand, has to do with casting vision
and motivating people (see pp. 1, xii).
- Phil Quigley, CEO of Pacific Bell
(as quoted in Robert K. Coopers’s Executive EQ)
I don’t think of leadership as a position, . . . I don’t think
of leadership as a skill. I think of leadership as a relationship. . . . of
taking responsibility for emotional connections, listening to and respecting
feelings [of others] (see pp. 51-52). Reflection:
- Peter Senge--The Dance of Change
Leadership [is] the capacity of a human community to shape its future,
and specifically to sustain the significant processes of change required to
do so . . . the capacity to hold creative tension, the energy generated when
people articulate a vision and tell the truth about current reality. . . .
By this definition, any organization has many leaders . . . consequently,
we will focus on leadership communities rather than hero-leaders (p.
These examples from contemporary leaders and teachers are designed to set in
motion an interactive process. Selected from a reading of the literature for
this article, they are just a representative few of the many valid concepts
available for your assessment. But more to the point, these definitions can
become tools for your own valuable work and insight.
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© 2006 servantleaderstoday.com; hosted and copyrighted
by Lloyd Elder & Associates, Inc.
For full citation of referenced works, see Bibliography/Links at www.servantleaderstoday.com
Adapted by Lloyd Elder, Th.D., Founding Director, Moench Center for Church Leadership