First up is creativity. Only a spiritual framework can best release creativity. Without such a lifestyle, the leader can never be open to the creativity of others, nor can the leader be sufficiently visionary to be creative himself or herself. Second, the leader must be competent. One of those strengths must be the ability to listen. And one of the ones listened to must be God. Third, the leader must be committed.
Not just to getting the trains running on time but to values, ethics, sacrifice, service. Fourth, the leader must have a strong character. And where do these characteristics come from?
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Among these five dimensions, altruistic calling is most aligned with ethics. There are also researchers such as Russell and Stone who reviewed the literature and proposed nine 'functional' attributes of servant leadership vision, honesty, integrity, trust, service, modeling, pioneering, appreciation of others, and empowerment and eleven 'accompanying' attributes communication, credibility, competence, stewardship, visibility, influence, persuasion, listening, encouragement, teaching, and delegation. They also argued that the servant leader must be a teacher in order to develop their followers, and that values and core personal beliefs were the antecedents to servant leadership.
This work was exploratory in nature.
Seven Keys To Succeeding Under Pressure–Read “The Spirit-Driven LEADER”
In addition to early definitions and distinct characteristics of Servant Leaders, researchers and leadership experts have used research to add on to these. James Sipe and Don Frick, in their book The Seven Pillars of Servant Leadership , state that servant-leaders are individuals of character, those who put people first, are skilled communicators, are compassionate collaborators, use foresight, are systems thinkers, and exercise moral authority. Similarly, researcher Akuchie explored the religious and spiritual articulations of the servant leadership construct.
Akuchie examined a single Bible passage related to servant leadership, just like the one mentioned in the opening of the essay. Akuchie suggested that the application of this lesson is for daily life. However, Akuchie did not, in any way, clarify servant leadership as distinct from other forms of leadership or articulate a framework for understanding servant leadership. They argued that this leadership principle was so important to Christianity that it was captured by all four Gospel writers Matthew, Mark, Luke, John. The researchers argued that servant leaders have a particular view of themselves as stewards who are entrusted to develop and empower followers to reach their fullest potential.
However, Sendjaya and Sarros research work did not propose a testable framework nor did this work distinguish between this and other leadership styles. The researchers presented servant leadership as a hierarchical model in a cyclical process. This consisted of behavioral vision, service and relational influence, credibility, trust components.
However, this conceptualization made by these researchers did not differ from leadership theories such as transformational leadership. Researcher Polleys distinguished servant leadership from three predominant leadership paradigms: The Trait, Behavioral, and Contingency approaches to leadership. Polleys's views aligned with transforming leadership but, once again, made no distinctions among Charismatic, Transformational, and Servant Leadership.
- The Spirit-Driven Leader: Seven Keys to Succeeding Under Pressure - The Presbyterian Outlook.
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- The Journal of Major George Washington: An Account of His First Official Mission, Made as Emissary from the Governor of Virginia to the Commandant of the ... Forces on the Ohio, Oct. 1753-Jan. 1754.
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Servant leadership predominately draws on two social theories to explain how it influences follower behavior: Social Learning and Social Exchange Theory. In contrast, Social Exchange Theory is used to argue that a servant leader's followers are exhibiting positive behaviors due to the reciprocal relationship they develop with their leader. While organizations thrive based on the work produced by the employees, the commitment of the employees to the organization is a major contributor to how well an organization functions. Research shows that management style is a main factor in sales person turnover.
Servant leadership practices appear to have an effect on the life of the employee, outside of the organizations that they are affiliated with. It has been concluded that employee perceptions of servant leadership practices and the support of employers and co-workers has a positive effect on an employee's family life. Servant leadership also contributes to employees' goal achievement and success. As defined before, a servant leader's goal is to build upon the skills of their employees and make them better people. Similar to servant leadership having an effect on employees' stress levels, it also affects them emotionally as well.
According to previous research, servant leadership seems to have an effect on the emotional health of the employees because the servant leaders' reliance on "one-on-one communication to understand the abilities, needs, desires, goals, and potential of those individuals"  aids in the employees' ability to express themselves in the work place. In turn, this nurturing from their employer leads to them returning this same nurturing towards their co-workers and making the work place a suitable environment for the growth of the employees, as well as the production of good quality work to grow the organization.
However, Servant Leaders being forgiving, and more importantly understanding, their employees are able to learn from their mistakes, hence their personal growth and changed behavior within the organization. To date, the more prevalent research being done on servant leadership is in regards to ethics. Apart from realizing how servant leadership can have different effects on organizations and its employees, ethics has become a major concern.
From the many studies done on the topic of Servant Leadership, researchers have realized that Servant Leaders implementing their practices in an ethical way should be a main focus. A number of scales have been created to measure servant leadership and ethics throughout organizations. Servant leadership is still going through the process of being accepted as a leadership theory because of Greenleaf's belief that Servant Leadership is a way of life rather than a systematized technique with a specific outline.