Servant Leadership Mastery

Strategies, Stories, and Stimulus for Leading with Respect Along with Results

Chapter 7.

What Do Team Members Want from Their Leader?

Deliberate

The opposite of a leader who changes too quickly for their ambition, regardless of potential risks, and opportunities, ignoring others’ advice causes detriment to any organization and its people. and is a leader who is consistent and DELIBERATE in the charting path forward in their decision-making, someone who takes the time to evaluate all available information and options before making a change or decision. This type of leader is likely to be methodical, thoughtful, and focused on long-term goals, rather than short-term gains. They may also prioritize building strong relationships and trust with their team, as well as fostering a culture of stability and consistency.

 

TIP: In the life-cycle of an organization we need different leaders to lead that phase of the organization, for instance, during the start-up mode and innovation phase, a more entrepreneurial mindset game-changer leader style would help the organization forward but needs to be backed by strategic thinking leader style to do the sanity check of go-to-market viability and feasibility catering or potential risks, supported by implementer type of style to launch into the market and facilitated by a coach-type of leader style to bring all ideas and concerns to the table in collaboration towards the one outcome for the organization, finalized by refining what has been launched, looking at the lessons and how to improve, as this type of leadership style would take the organization to the next level of excellence.

When a leader changes ideas too fast and too frequently, it can cause several problems for both the organization and the people, including:

  1. Lack of Consistency – Frequent changes in ideas can lead to a lack of consistency in decision-making, which can make it difficult for employees to understand what the company stands for and what direction it is headed in. This can create confusion and uncertainty among employees, which can ultimately harm morale and productivity.
  2. Loss of Trust – Employees may begin to lose belief in their ability to lead and make sound decisions. This can lead to a lack of confidence in the company’s direction, which can result in decreased motivation and productivity.
  3. Wasted Time and Resources – Frequent changes in ideas can result in wasted time and resources. When employees are asked to switch gears frequently, it can disrupt workflows and processes, which can be costly and time-consuming to fix.
  4. Lowered Morale – If employees feel that their hard work is constantly being undone or redirected due to a leader’s changing ideas, it can lead to lowered morale and decreased job satisfaction. This can lead to increased turnover and difficulty in attracting and retaining top talent.
  5. Damage to Reputation – If a leader is perceived as indecisive or inconsistent, it can damage the company’s reputation and make it difficult to attract customers, investors, or business partners. This can ultimately harm the company’s bottom line and long-term prospects.

In 2015, BCG conducted research asking 250,000 job seekers the following question “What would it take for you to join an organization?”, and their top 4 responses were:

Overall, frequent changes in ideas can cause a range of problems for both the company and people, as they end up feeling lost and doubting the purpose of doing meaningless as they just know it will be scrapped soon enough by another flickered idea by the leader. Employees tend to perceive such leaders do not know how to lead and would not willingly follow their direction or requests, but may do it due to the leader’s position of power.

Leaders need to strike a balance between being flexible and adaptable while still maintaining a clear vision and direction for the organization. Changes are best collaboratively discussed with those involved and assessed the viability and level of necessity for them, with measured impact and risk consequences.

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Dr. Maria Pressentin is a Servant Leadership Strategist, a multi-award-winning behavioral scientist, and a leadership development professional, Maria helps people shift their mindset and apply serving-leader skills to their daily interactions. Her work involves incorporating competencies of servant leadership in organizational functional and strategic roles to build long-term vitality in businesses. Her latest book is titled “Key Factors and Use Cases of Servant Leadership Driving Organizational Performance”, IGI Global, 2021.

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