Stategic Leadership

Strategic Leadership…

…Is Servant Leadership

“The servant-leader is servant first… It begins with the natural

feeling that one wants to serve, to serve first.

Then conscious choice brings one to aspire to lead.”

(Greenleaf, 1977, p. 27).

Key aspects of significant leadership.

  • The role of a servant leader is not just to have followers but to see the potential of others realized.
  • The one who follows such a leader is released to be more than the leader is.
  • Succession is the aim.
  • Significance not just success.
  • Ego can be an enemy of leadership.

Joseph Jaworski said in his book Synchronicity the inner path of leadership that

“I kept denying my destiny because of my insecurity”.

(Jaworski, 1996, p. 74).

I would take this further and say that you can deny the destiny of others and the organisation because of your insecurity, because the desire to retain the “power” or control yourself stops you from releasing others to be greater than you.

It is only when we are secure with our own being that we are truly free to lead others by releasing them into their destiny.

Leadership for me is all about the next generation.

Passing the Baton

The race we run is a relay not an individual sprint, we run as a team passing the baton from one person to another. When someone else is running we are either getting ready to run or we are cheering others on to the next change or the finishing line.

“Do not seek to follow the footsteps of men of old. Seek what they sought!”

(Greenleaf, 2002, quotes… Basho, p. 235).

I am a good guitarist and band leader. For me to release the potential in others I first must see it in them. Train them, give them a chance and mentor them, then get off the stage so that they can do it, and cheer them on as they do.

“The best way to develop responsibility in others is to give them responsibility.”

(Blanchard, Oncken, & Burrows, 2004, p. 73).

Examples of leadership styles

  • The Dictator… “Do as I say”
  • The Insecure Leader… “I must hold onto control”
  • The Reluctant Leader… “I lead because no one else will.”
  • The Systems Manager… Process not people matter
  • The People Manager… People not process matter
  • The Visionary Leader… “I’ll show you the destination”
  • The Servant Leader… Release the potential of others to achieve great things

The key to significant leadership is that you have a heart for others and that you are prepared to do what it takes to aid others to be all they can be.

Paul S Allen



Blanchard, K., Oncken, W., Burrows, H. (2004) The one minute manager meets the monkey London: Harper Collins Publishers.

Greenleaf, R. (1977, 1991 & 2002). Servant leadership (25th anniversary edition): A journey into the nature of legitimate power and greatness Mahwah New Jersey: Paulist Press.

Jaworski, J. (1996). Synchronicity the inner path of leadership. San Francisco: Barrett-Koehler.

About Paul S Allen

Kiwi singer-songwriter based in Dunedin, New Zealand. Musician (Guitar, Bass, Ukulele, Mandolin, Keyboard); Photographer; Poet; Thinker. I have food allergies so ask when you invite me for dinner. Lumen accipe et imperti. (receive the light and pass it on) Email me:

Posted on 04/02/2010, in Business Development, Church, Faith and Personal Development, Leadership and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. Dion Govender

    Hi Paul, great post! I love that servant leadership is more about bringing others through than about building for oneself. Great read, thank you

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