Literature review on servant leadership
In globalization world, the current businesses require modern leaders to take measures and keep a sense of urgency at the right and appropriate time by updating a company’s vision and mission. Therefore, servant leaders play a crucial role to meet the long-term vision of the firm. Here is the discussion about the servant leadership framework which has been presented by Sendjaya. The paper explains that how servant leadership provides enormous benefits to the organization. It also explains the servant leadership styles that have been discussed by Sendjaya. More detail of the task has been detailed below.
Antonakis & Day (2017) stated that Leadership is the ability of a company’s management to set and attain the challenging goals and objectives, take swift and decisive action, outperform the rivalries and encourage other to perform well within the organization. In other words, leadership is the ability of the group and individuals to influence and assist the followers or other members of the firm. Furthermore, leadership plays a significant role to attract and retain more candidates in the organization. It shall be noted by Goleman (2017) where he argued that leadership involves setting a clear vision, mission and sharing that vision and mission with others so that they will follow rules willingly and rendering the knowledge, information and methods to realize that vision. In this way, the organization can attain its desired goals and objectives (Rhodes & Hart, 2014). In today’s era, the organization cannot expand and explore the business operations globally without using dynamic leadership styles in the workplace.
The above mentioned diagram shows that there are six dimension of servant leadership. These dimension help in the expansion and development of the organization. These dimension include voluntary subordination, authentic self, covenantal relationship, responsible morality, transcendental spirituality and transforming influence. According to Sendjaya, Sarros and Santora (2008) servant leaders serve other people to enhance and motivate to them. The dimensions of servant leadership have been detailed below.
Voluntary subordination: It has been stated by Sendjaya, Sarros and Santora (2008) that servant leadership is willingness to take various opportunities to serve others whenever there is a legitimate needs and requirements regardless of the nature of the service. Under this dimension, the leaders focus on the expectations and desires of the followers.
Authentic self: It is noted that servant leaders are enough capable for doing tasks and duties. They are responsible to perform roles and responsibilities in a hassle free manner.
Covenantal relationship: The authenticity of the servant leaders significantly shapes and influences their relationship to others. With the help of servant leadership, the leaders are able to maintain effective relationship with followers. Having a good relationship helps in attaining long term mission and vision of the firm.
Responsible morality: The leaders employ relational power and authority that facilitates good morale dialogue between followers and leaders. It is noted that servant leadership promotes and inspires the post conventional moral reasoning in the organization and inspiring others to engage in it.
Transforming influence: The servant leadership influences other people effectively. It is argued that servant leadership is demonstrated whenever those served by the servant leaders are positively transformed in multiple dimensions.
Let’s talk about the servant leadership, this, leadership drew more attentions from researchers and scholars recently. It shall be noted by Parris & Peachey (2013) where they stated that servant leaders have the potential and capability of solving some real business issues and problems. It is noted that servant leadership is powerful tool and technique for the team members. A leader’s attitude and behavior determine an organization’s future and success. Spears & Lawrence (2016) revealed that servant leaders are critically affected the organizational productivity and performance. They identify and generate unmet demand of the market and they are willing to serve this market which will help and support them to get various advantages in the workplace. On the other hand, servant leaders are modest and they can serve their subordinates to make full use of subordinates potentials and skills. Furthermore, it shall be stated by Yoshida, Sendjaya, Hirst & Cooper (2014) where they described that servant leaders make a high contribution to the development and growth of the society by providing support to the society. They inspire the employees for performing roles and responsibilities in a hassle-free manner. Servant leaders also enhance and improve the ethical level of the firm through the efficiency and effectiveness of modeling. This leadership also helps in increasing and improving the effectiveness of the team. The servant leaders provide a clear direction to the follower because of their mission and vision of their reality. They encourage subordinates to focus on the plans and policies of rivalries in the marketplace. Sipe & Frick (2015) stated that trust is a bridge between servant leaders and a strong team spirit. Communication issues also create hurdles and obstacles in the workplace. Therefore, servant leaders resolve these communication issues to boost the confidence in the followers. Selladurai (2014) argued that servant leadership style is an ideal style. It is difficult to find a leader that is fully equipped with all the servant leadership values and attitudes. Hence, servant leadership is not only a mixture of values and attributes but also can be a crucial company’s culture. It shall be noted that servant leadership deals with the reality of power in everyday life in the workplace. Such type of leaders strives to understand and encourage other for doing work well.
Servant leaders concentrate and focus on performance planning, day to day coaching, development and helping people to attain long-term mission and vision. They provide vision and mission and their team understands company’s desires and expectations. It has been analyzed by Hunter, Neubert, Perry, Witt, Penney& Weinberger (2013) where they stated that servant leadership philosophy and practices have been articulated in many ways and applied in many contexts. Some of the well known and popular advocates of servant leadership include Peter Senge, Ken Blanchard, M.Scott Peck and Margaret Wheatley. This leadership also motivates the workers by providing the resources and autonomy. The servant leadership renders a multidimensional leadership theory that entails all the attributes of leadership including relational, ethical and outcome-based dimensions. Listening, empathy, conceptualization, foresight, stewardship, healing, awareness, persuasion, building community and commitment to growth are primary principles of servant leadership. Furthermore, this leadership is an understanding and practice of leadership that places the needs and requirements of the managers and leaders as well. Such type of leaders encourages and promotes the development and growth of people. Direction and vision are main features of servant leadership (Bolman & Deal, 2017). Yukl (2013) argued that servant leaders believe in both future and present values to maximize revenue. According Sendjaya, Sarros and Santora (2008), servant leadership includes the following:
Transformational leadership: According Sendjaya, Sarros and Santora (2008) transformational leaders encourages and motivate others to attain maximum level of outputs and returns. Such type of leaders focuses first on the leadership styles after then focuses on the organization. The role of transformational leaders is to inspire and encourage the followers to pursue organizational objectives and goals.
Authentic leadership: It has been stated by Sendjaya, Sarros and Santora (2008) that authentic leaders focus on the development and efficiency of the followers. Authentic leaders may be defined as individuals who have a deep and clear awareness of their own beliefs and other values and the context in which they operate the business. It has been stated that servant leadership emphasizes a spiritual orientation which is not influenced by the authentic leadership model.
Spiritual leadership: According to the literature given by Sendjaya, Sarros and Santora (2008) spiritual leadership is developed and built within an intrinsic motivation model that incorporates faith, visison, hope and expectations. This leadership is a motivation to change and examine the motivation based leadership approaches. In this leadership, leaders identify and analyze the followers needs and requirements for spiritual survival and growth.
In today’s competitive world, customer satisfaction is the most significant factors in an organization’s efficiency and effectiveness. The servant leadership is a vital leadership theory that directs organizations and enhances the well being of subordinates (Schneider & George, 2011). According to Sendjaya et al (2008) there are various benefits of servant leadership style that have been stated below.
Diversity: It shall be noted that servant leadership style can be dynamic and effective in a diverse workplace because it motivates the employees for performing roles and duties. Such type of leadership serves each and every member of the group in the organization (Sabir, Sohail, A., & Khan, 2011).
Loyalty: The leaders and managers develop and boost loyalty, morale, and trust among the followers to make effective and dynamic decision in the workplace. They inspire employees and develop a strong sense of loyalty and faith among the workers in the firm.
Involvement: An organization, who wants to fulfill the needs and requirements of the employees, can choose servant leadership style in the workplace. The company can acquire a wide variety of solutions to reduce the issues and obstacles within the workplace by initiating the servant leadership style (Rezaei, Salehi, Shafiei & Sabet, 2012).
Productivity: The leaders who use servant leadership style tend to attain respect and loyalty from their workers in the workplace. The strong and unique feelings between workers and management is called the servant leadership style which helps to maintain a high sense of loyalty and morale in the organization. If the subordinates are satisfied with their employment and jobs, workplace productivity and performance rises (Searle & Barbuto Jr, 2011).
Achievement: With the help of servant leadership style in the workplace, the leaders and managers set the high standards and rules for themselves and others. By using this leadership style, the managers are able to achieve common goals and objectives of the Corporation. Furthermore, workers become empowered to make organizational changes that enable long-term growth and progress for the entire company.
Change: Using the servant leadership style, the company can determine and identify the mission and goals based on the employee’s viewpoints. In addition, workers can manage their career more efficiently and establish a suitable work and life balance in the workplace.
Satisfaction: When workers work under the servant leadership style, then leaders provide satisfaction to the workers. As a result, it improves absenteeism and employee satisfaction rates in the workplace.
Although, servant leadership theory provides enormous benefits to the firm as well as individuals yet it also creates various types of issues at the workplace. Some of the disadvantages of servant leadership style have been detailed below.
False premise: The servant leadership is unable to align with basic business structure and framework. On the other hand, false promises are done by the leaders which could affect the productivity and efficiency of the workers adversely (Gotsis & Grimani, 2016).
Lack of authority: Servant leaders and managers helps to reduce the loss and challenges of the market. If the top management wants managers to push workers to better productivity and performance, it is quite difficult for the servant management to step back into this role. Jit, Sharma & Kawatra (2016) stated that servant managers are unable to assign tasks and duties to the employees due to lack of authority.
Demotivating: The servant leaders may lead to demotivation and disappointment in the workplace due to lack of authority and responsibility.
Limited vision: The leaders have right to set limited vision in the organization therefore, it affects the efficiency of the leaders (Kibbe, 2015).
Apart from these issues, servant leadership has several other disadvantages that may influence the image of the firm in the market. The main issue which can see in the servant leader is the excessive amount of work required for performing roles and responsibilities. Hence, it affects the individual’s roles and responsibilities of the employees negatively. It shall be stated that servant leadership is the time-consuming approach. Lack of willingness is another disadvantage of servant leadership style. Aa a result, the leaders are unable to adopt such type of leadership style in the organization (Kibbe, 2015). Now it shall be noted that servant leadership plays an empirical role in each and every organization to minimize the risks and challenges. It also helps to accomplish the desired vision and targets within the organization. After the various studied it has been analyzed by Yigit & Bozkurt (2017) that servant leaders do not push down the organizational objectives and goals of the followers. They rather take time and effort to support the employees in understanding and analyzing their strengths, weaknesses, values, beliefs and identify their potential and effective purpose that they were unable to attain their own. In addition, this theory is related to the soft approach. In today’s globalization world, there is a need for the employee’s empowerment in the firm which wants to be competitive (Samad, 2015). The level of employee empowerment in the company depends on the servant leadership style in the workplace. Persuading is the main capability of servant leader because they can convince other people to accept specific ideas and thoughts. This leadership is demonstrated and confirmed by developing and empowering people, by expressing acceptance, humility, and authenticity and by rendering direction (Searle & Barbuto Jr, 2011). There is a close relationship between servant leadership style and employee empowerment that has been stated below.
A conceptual framework for servant leadership and employee empowerment
Many authors argued that there is a close and reciprocal relationship between servant leadership and organizational productivity. Various servant leadership models have been developed in today’s competitive world (Wilkes, 2011). The conceptual model of servant leadership has been discussed below. In this conceptual model, servant leadership is the forecaster variable, employees trust on the manager serves as the mediator and employee commitment is the outcome variable.
It shall be noted that leaders generate profitability through their behavior and actions. They communicate with workers to handle the grievances and issues of the organization (Steers, Sanchez-Runde & Nardon, 2012). The servant leadership has a direct impact on the employee trust and employee commitment in the organization. It is noted that servant leadership is not about status, and prestige thus, servant leaders are likely to resist special privileges. Moreover, effective and dynamic servant leaders must promote and encourage the development of people and they build community in the organization.
Let’s talk about an example; Starbucks is one of the biggest examples of servant leadership. By using servant leadership style, the company has been able to satisfy the needs and requirements of each customer in the global market. This is a unique, good and effective application of servant leadership to enhance and develop the organizational efficiency and effectiveness. Apart from organizational performance, this leadership also boosts and maximizes the team effectiveness by putting their subordinates needs and requirements in a high priority (Lee, 2016).
The other example of partial servant leaders is the CEO of HTC, Peter Chou. He is a servant leader who serves his duties and responsibilities successfully. Peter Chou has some attributes of a servant leaders and he maintains skills to increase and enhance the effectiveness of the team. Chou maintains a clear vision and provides a clear direction that helps the company to grow and flourish. By using servant leadership style, chou has been able to analyze and identify the plans, policies, and strategies of the competitors in the international market. He provides opportunities to the workers to improve and enhance their skills, talents, and potential. This indicates that HTC is a serving and dynamic company. A servant leader is not only one person; it could be everyone in the company. HTC’s workers are willing to serve their consumers, which is turn bring growth and success to HTC (Samad, 2015).
Mr. Brad Banducci is also considered a servant leader. He is CEO and managing director of Woolworths Company. Mr. Brad is an effective leader who promotes and encourages workers to increase and improve the outputs of the firm. Furthermore, he monitors and focuses on the activities of the workers in the workplace to handle and eliminate the risks and challenges of the marketplace (Spears & Lawrence, 2016)
Mr. Brad Banducci plays an active role in Woolworth’s supermarkets. It shall be noted that he is also an entrepreneur and retailer evaluated by discipline. He focuses and monitors on the demands, needs, requirements, and expectations of the consumers to increase and maximize the sale of Woolworth’s group. To evaluate and identify the needs and requirements of the customers, Mr. Brad analyzes and identifies the Australian market and measures the risks and challenges of the market. It shall be analyzed that Mr. Bradford Leon also protects the rights and interest of the stakeholder to increases the outcomes of Woolworths. Effective training and development coaching is provided by Mr. Brad to improve employee’s talents and skills in the workplace. He is a good listener and relationship builder who maintains a favorable relationship with subordinates within the organization. By using servant leadership style, he has been able to reduce and eliminate the anxiety and frustration of the follower in the workplace (Spears & Lawrence, 2016).
Alan Joseph Joyce is also considered servant leaders who provide a contribution to growth and progress of airline Qantas. He is a most influential business leader around the world. Alan Joseph distributes roles and responsibilities among the workers for achieving the goals. It is stated that he provides power and authorities to the employees to make unique decisions within the organization. By using servant leadership, Joseph has been able to implement the three-year transformational plan in the organization. On the other, Alan Joseph also maintains dignity, honesty, accountability, and innovation in the workplace (Rhodes & Hart, 2014).
Let’s talk about another example, Julia Gillard come first who follows servant leadership styles in the workplace. She was the prime minister of the Australia and Julia Gillard is the biggest player of the labor part from 2010 to 2013. She analyzes and evaluates the issues, hurdles, and obstacles of Australian to provide support them. In this way, she tries to improve and boost their life. She always tries to develop and enhance the confidence and trust among the Australians. Furthermore, she boosts a strong sense of morale and loyalty towards her followers and employees. She has proved that how a female employee can be effective and capable in an employment and job. Julia Gillard also protects the rights of Australian people. She wants that government provide support to poor and illiterate Australians. In this way, it can be said that Julia Gillard is a powerful and motivated woman. She is passionate and dedicated towards her employment and work (Giltinane, 2013).
Mother Teresa is also considered a dedicated and servant leader because she devoted her life to serving other people. All these are the example of servant leaders who provide several benefits to people and organization as well (Spears & Lawrence, 2016).
Steve Job is also a good example of servant leader with a great and clear vision. He was the CEO and managing director of Apple Inc. He is one of the dynamic and effective leaders in the world who gave great contribution in the growth of Apple Inc. He helped their employees in order to improve their self-awareness and efficiency. Therefore, servant leaders always groom and boost an employee to take over their position in the workplace (Antonakis & Day, 2017).
On the above-mentioned analysis, it has been concluded that servant leadership plays a vital and foremost role in the organization to attain the maximum level of output in the organization. If the company wants to make an effective and dynamic financial position in the global market, servant leadership style shall be exercised by the leaders in the organization. This leadership style helps to stand out against the competitors. Such type of leaders maintains open communication with workers at the workplace. It has been studied that servant leaders can perform tasks better than other types of leaders because they identify and abstract the trends of development and growth.
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