“If you help people get what they want, they will help you get what you want.” – Zig Ziglar
The heart of leadership is serving others first, before yourself. Here’s the problem, most organizations operate from a hierarchical leadership structure. Leaders “move up” the ladder in an organization, and, once there, see themselves “above” their team. Despite its trending status – as well as its undeniable success – most people do not equate leadership to service. Rather than epitomizing humility, influence and meeting people where they are at, too many leaders think being a leader means power and authority.
Here’s the good news. Some of the top performing companies like Chick-fil-A, Best Buy, UPS, Whole Foods, Starbucks, Ritz Carlton and Southwest Airlines are lead by self-described servant leaders. Their leadership qualities are people-centric, modeling servant leadership behavior and valuing service to others. They are humble – allowing their behavior to communicate their values and their appreciation for their people – and they are vigilant – in promoting the right attitude and belief systems that encourage others to succeed.