Service.
Leader’s Role #1
(And #2 & #3 & …)

I have a slide that I invariably use at the top of a presentation:

Organizations exist to serve.

Period.

Leaders exist to serve.

Period.

My abiding penchant for leadership-as-service was supported in Jim Strock's superb Serve to Lead. (He will soon be one of our "Cool Friends.") Here are the bare-bones basics:

Ten Principles of Twenty-first Century Leadership

  1. Everyone can lead because everyone can serve.
  2. The most valuable resource of any enterprise is its people.
  3. We are in transition from a transaction-based world to a relationship-based world.
  4. Leadership is a relationship between empowered, consenting adults.
  5. Leadership is a dynamic relationship.
  6. There is no universal leadership style.
  7. Leadership roles are converging.
  8. A leader's unique task is to imagine and advance a vision.
  9. Love is the highest level of leadership relationships.
  10. Character is a competitive advantage.

The Four Questions

  1. Who are you serving?
  2. How can you best serve?
  3. Are you making your unique contribution?
  4. Are you getting better every day?