What makes a leader? Often, it is thought that a leader is someone who leads or commands a group, organization or country. That may be the definition of “leader,” but we all know that a simple description doesn’t tell the whole story. In our journey to become leaders in our organization, careers and life, it is important to focus on being servant-leaders.  

“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. That person is sharply different from one who is leader first…” said Robert K. Greenleaf.  

Read these 10 characteristics of a servant-leader and reflect on how you can become the best support for your peers in Alpha Gamma Delta and beyond:

  • LISTENING You wait to share your thoughts and ideas, and you let others finish speaking. You give people your undivided attention and pay attention to their body language.
  • EMPATHY You strive to understand others’ viewpoints above your own.
  • PERSUASION You aim to build consensus among your team. Your persuasions are not coercion or solely based on position or power. Persuasion is often viewed as manipulative. However, it can be a positive tool when used correctly.
  • GROWTH You are committed to advancing the personal and professional development of your team members.
  • BUILDING COMMUNITY You identify opportunities to have people work together to accomplish a goal and constantly remind people how their work contributes to the organization’s overall success.
  • HEALING You search for wholeness and the potential to heal yourself, as well as others, so transformation and growth can happen.
  • AWARENESS You have the capacity for self-examination and recognize yourself as an individual who is separate from the environment and other people.
  • CONCEPTUALIZATION You bring big-picture visions to reality by looking at a problem or the organization, rather than just day-to-day tasks.
  • FORESIGHT You use intuition when solving complex problems. You understand lessons from the past and the present and use those lessons to make decisions that affect the future.
  • STEWARDSHIP You hold something in trust for others. You assume first and foremost a commitment to serving the needs of others. 

This post originally appeared in the Pearls of Wisdom in the Summer 2016 Issue of the Quarterly 

Leave a Reply