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Servant Leadership: The Greenleaf Leadership Philosophy

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Dontana McPherson-Joseph

on 10 October 2014

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Transcript of Servant Leadership: The Greenleaf Leadership Philosophy

Robert K. Greenleaf
Born: 1904, Terre Haute, Indiana
Died: 1990
Servant Leadership: The Greenleaf Leadership Philosophy
Vision: A better society, one that is more just and more loving, one that provides greater creative opportunity for its people.--Robert K. Greenleaf (Greenleaf Center, n.d.).
Name change in 1985. Headquarters in Indianapolis.
Share power in decision making: The servant leader cultivates a well-rounded workforce by delegating decision-making powers as necessary and proper. She enables her workforce to grow professionally.
Holistic approach to work: The servant leader understands that work is important, but just as important are the people that perform the work. She values her workforce.
Professional Life
Graduated with a math degree from Carleton College in 1926, and promptly obtained a job with AT&T, where he remained for 38 years.
Participated in AT&T's first management training program, and eventually became Director of Management Development.
Servant Leadership
It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve, to serve first. Then conscious choice brings one to aspire to want to lead. -- Robert K. Greenleaf. (Greenleaf Center, n.d.).
Servant Leadership
The servant leader listens with an open mind and heart. She seeks to understand that which is said and which remains unsaid.
Selected Works
The Robert K. Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership
Founded in 1964 as The Center for Applied Ethics by Robert.
Major Influences
His father, George Greenleaf. Community steward, mechanic, machinist.
Dontaná McPherson-Joseph
LIBR282: Seminar in Library Management
San Jose State University
October 13, 2014

Originated the modern concept of servant leadership. That is, leadership is the conscious choice of someone who has within herself the desire to serve others first and foremost. In so doing, the servant leader is able to develop her workforce into a thriving, "healthier, wiser, freer, more autonomous" group of people (Greenleaf Center, n.d.).
The book
Journey to the East
by Hermann Hesse, specifically the character of Leo. Leo, who would be revealed to be the leader of the organization that prompts the titular journey, but on the journey did laundry, cooked, and kept spirits from flagging.
A college teacher. Instilled in Robert the belief that large institutions were not serving the good of individual people or society at large well enough.
His wife, Esther Hargrave Greenleaf. They met in Manhattan, and Esther exposed Robert to art and literature he would not otherwise have experienced. Her presence in his life sparked a deep and abiding personal change.
While at AT&T, Robert created the corporate assessment center, initiated a program to develop future leaders by introducing them to the humanities, brought in guest lecturers to teach about the far-reaching consequences of corporate decisions. Moreover, he was one of the first to promote women and African-Americans to non-menial labor positions.
Mission: "To advance the awareness, understanding, and practice of servant leadership by individuals and organizations" (Greenleaf Center, n.d.).

Greenleaf, R.K. (n.d.).
Ten principles of servant leadership.
Retrieved from http://www.butler.edu/volunteer/resources/principles-of-servant-leadership/

Kent, K. M. (2014).
Definition of servant leadership.
Retrieved from http://toservefirst.com/definition-of- servant-leadership.html
Robert K. Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership. (n.d.) Retrieved from http://www.greenleaf.org/.

Smith, C. (2005).
Servant leadership: The leadership theory of Robert. K. Greenleaf
. Retrieved from http://www.carolsmith.us/downloads/640greenleaf.pdf.

Spears, L. C. (2005).
The understanding and practice of servant leadership
. Retrieved from http://www.regent.edu/acad/global/publications/sl_proceedings/2005/spears_practice.pdf.

Image credits:
Robert K. Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership. www.greenleaf.org
Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership Pinterest Board. Retrieved from http://www.pinterest.com/pin/362750944957974945/

Core Characteristics
Ten Principles
Greenleaf, R. K. (1970).
The servant as leader.
Indianapolis, IN: The Robert K. Greenleaf Center.
Greenleaf, R. K. (1977).
Servant leadership: A journey into the nature of legitimate power and greatness.
Indianapolis, IN: The Robert K. Greenleaf Center.
Greenleaf, R. K. (1972).
The institution as servant.
Indianapolis, IN: The Robert K. Greenleaf Center.
Service to others: The servant leader focuses on the "highest priority" needs of others before her own (Greenleaf Center, n.d.). She must "encourage greatness in others" first, the success of the organization is a pleasant, indirect result (Smith, 2005).
Promote a sense of community: The servant leader embodies and fosters in her workforce the ideal that each person is responsible for the success and well-being the other. She supports the creation of formal and informal connections between colleagues.
Opted for early retirement in the early 1960s to focus on The Center for Applied Ethics.
: The servant leader "assumes good intentions" when dealing with individuals (Smith, 2005). Even when she must discipline an employee, she takes care to affirm the person while rejecting the behavior.
The servant leader cultivates in herself, and supports others in their search for, a sense of wholeness in personal and professional arenas.
The servant leader is aware of herself, her inner biases and prejudices, her way of being in the world that may hinder her service to others.
The servant leader works to build consensus. She attempts to persuade others through personal rather than positional power.
The servant leader has a vision, a forward looking ideal to which she aspires. She remains focused on this vision, but also maintains attention on day-to-day operations.
The servant leader applies lessons from the past to present situations, acknowledging the likely consequences or opportunities that may arise from the decision.
The servant leader believes that the organization should work for the good of society at large. She surrounds herself with a leadership team which shares this belief, and nurtures social responsibility in her workforce.
Commitment to the growth of people
: The servant leader believes in the "intrinsic value" of people beyond their work contributions. She is dedicated to the personal and professional development of all employees
Building community:
Greenleaf believed that society is bereft without the sense of togetherness and shared struggle/triumph of days gone by. The servant leader should work to instill this sense into the culture of her organization.
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