The concept of leaders as servants goes back into ancient history but was articulated most clearly in the 20th century by Robert Greenleaf in an essay, “The Servant as Leader,” published in 1970.
In the next four years, two more essays explored ideas that an entire institution – and a society – could act as servants, and that trustees should act as servants.
In 1976, Paulist Press published Servant Leadership: A Journey into the Nature of Legitimate Power and Greatness, a book that combined these and other essays. See The Center for Servant Leadership.
Bob joined the chorus in 1995, when he contributed a chapter on “Servant Leadership and the Future” in a book edited by Larry Spears called Reflections on Leadership: How Robert K. Greenleaf’s Theory of Servant-Leadership Influenced Today’s Top Management Thinkers.
The concept of servant leadership has greatly influenced us and many other students of leadership over the years.
Its impact is still going strong.
Servant leadership is timeless for a reason. Why not give it a try? What could servant leadership mean for you?
Bob Vanourek and Gregg Vanourek are leadership practitioners, teachers, trainers, and award-winning authors. They are co-authors of Triple Crown Leadership: Building Excellent, Ethical, and Enduring Organizations, a winner of the International Book Awards, and called “the best book on leadership since Good to Great.” Take their Leadership Derailers Assessment or sign up for their newsletter. If you found value in this, please forward it to a friend. Every little bit helps!