We are a competitive society.
The dominance of sports alone proves that, but you can add to that the plethora of awards shows on TV, our tendency toward rankings like #1, First, Best, Largest, or, in school; A, B, C… and so on.
It’s not that competition is bad, in fact It’s good, very good. It makes us strive to improve and make things the best they can be.
Yet, there is also a downside, an unintended consequence: in the quest to be above and “on top” we lose site of the most effective leadership style: serving others.
To be a Servant Leader we need to be able to think of others more than ourselves. We need to be others centered not self-centered. That takes humility.
What if we flipped the script? What if the award went to….. STOP. I’m not going where you think I’m going. The NFL does have an award for the most outstanding player on and off the field, usually recognized as someone who gives back to the community and the PGA has the Payne Stewart award for the player who is epitomized by good works. These are wonderful awards recognizing the quality and character of a professional athlete who gives back.
But what if there were no awards? What if the award was simply the outcome of our leadership in helping others thrive, others become maximized, and others become the best they can be?
Being a Servant Leader is its own reward. No award needed. It is the sheer satisfaction in knowing that you made a difference in someone’s life. And it comes with the countless times you went out of your way to do something for someone—even if it was a small act of kindness that took only 30 seconds.
Servant Leaders don’t serve for the award, they serve for the sheer joy of it, knowing that because of you, someone else’s life is a little bit better.
If you are interested in becoming a Servant Leader you will want to check out my book, Leadership Qualities People Crave.