Commentary

January 25, 2013

Servant-leadership style worthwhile, effective

Maj. SCOTT LAFONT
56th Dental Squadron

I’ve spent 21 years in the military, serving as both an enlisted member and an officer. I’ve seen “The Good, The Bad and The Ugly” of leadership styles.
However, the most worthwhile and effective styles of leadership I’ve seen is the servant leader. I have read many books on the servant leader style, and I believe it is compatible with both military and civilian organizations. The following points highlight my perspective on servant leadership:

  • Serve first. These leaders choose to be a servant first. They seek to involve others in decision-making, consistently display ethical and caring behavior, and strive to improve the quality of organizational life.
  • Clear vision. Every leader should develop and communicate a clear vision for the organization. The vision provides a framework for goals and gives structure during times of crisis.
  • Values. These are the nonnegotiable principles that define the character of the individual and organization. Shared values are essential for keeping the organization working together with purpose. Example: integrity first, service before self, and excellence in all we do.
  • Listen and learn. Servant leaders take time to intently listen to others. They want to see and hear the nonverbal and verbal. They know they cannot get this from email, texts or tweets.
  • Adapt. Today’s leaders deal with a diverse and multigenerational population. They must approach and motivate personnel in different ways. They must adapt to meet a variety of management challenges.
  • Plan for succession. Servant leaders cultivate the personal and professional growth of their colleagues. Motivated by concern for subordinates and the future of the organization, they are aware of their responsibility to mentor tomorrow’s leaders.
  • Do as you say. Servant leaders live by the same standards they set for others to follow knowing that their credibility hangs on their consistency.
  • Cultivate creativity. Saying, “That’s how we have always done it,” is a dead-end. Leaders must be willing to see change as good and to promote the expression of ideas. Subordinates should be seen as potential resources.
  • Know your personnel. Servant leaders make an effort to ask their personnel about their likes, dislikes, family and interests. It’s not always about business. Teams are built on relationships.
  • Relax. To consistently perform at a high level, leaders must live a balanced life. They take their job seriously, but also take time to recharge.

As Ken Blanchard wrote in The Servant Leader, leadership is an, “influence process — anytime you are trying to influence the thoughts and actions of others toward goal accomplishment in either their personal or professional life you are engaging in leadership.”

So whether you are a flight commander, an airman or a parent teaching a child to read, you can influence someone.

You can be a leader. How will you lead?




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Airman 1st Class 
PEDRO MOTA

MMA ramps up combat training

Airman 1st ClassPEDRO MOTA Team Ill Brasil brings a new style of martial arts to the base. The Luke Air Force Base Bryant Fitness Center now offers discipline specific martial arts training Monday through Friday at the Combat T...
 
 

DUI in Arizona: You can’t afford it

Arizona has some of the toughest drunken driving laws in the United States. The average overall cost of a DUI in the state of Arizona is around $10,000. Crazy, right? Ten thousand dollars may seem hard to swallow at first, but first time offenders often find themselves paying considerable unforeseen expenses throughout the course of...
 
 

Is being good, good enough?

In today’s Air Force can you settle with just being good? I say, “No.” With the Air Force executing the deepest force cuts since the end of the cold war with programs such as the Quality Force Review Board and the Enlisted Retention Board, what you do and how well you do it matters more...
 

 

Your career – as easy as 1, 2, 3

Oftentimes at retirements we hear the phrase, “This is one chapter in my life.” No matter what our goal is, whether it is to serve for four years or 20 years, each of us will leave the Air Force at some point. This leads to the question, “What does it take to have an Air...
 
 
Tech. Sgt.
LOUIS VEGA, Jr.

Reserve recruiter has heart of bull

Tech. Sgt.LOUIS VEGA, Jr. Master Sgt. Stanley Iakopo, Air Force Reserve Command recruiter with the 944th Fighter Wing, puts Joe Vigil, pro fighter and assistant trainer, in a hold while training at Peraza Boxing and Mixed Marti...
 
 

News Briefs July 18, 2014

Base-wide exercise The 56th Fighter Wing will conduct an active-shooter exercise Aug. 15. The exercise will include military and local, county and state law enforcement, and fire departments. On and off-base residents should expect traffic disruptions, gate closures or delays, and interruptions of customer service operations. Expect to see simulated explosions, smoke, role players depicting...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin