RSS Feed (xml)

Powered By

Skin Design:
Free Blogger Skins

Powered by Blogger

Monday, June 04, 2007

Servants Need Champions

I've been thinking a lot lately about the consequences of being a servant and what a servant needs from it's servant-leaders. I've spent 12 out of the last 14 years being involved in the servant-leader category as a youth pastor. Since God's redirecting in my life that I have been trying to follow, I have found myself in a total servant capacity working at Costco in both the Marketing and Membership departments.

So I was thinking the other day about a teammates insight's into my work life about what I'll call a "passion to serve". She described about how early on how fired up I was to take care of member's needs and issues and go the extra mile at the drop of a hat. "But now," she states, " "after a few months you became just like the rest of us: tired, beat up, and a bit more skeptical."

Really? Me? Does it show that easily and quickly? Ouch.

How quickly did the metamorphosis happen? Why did I turn out just like everybody else when I really wanted to be a cut above...a leader by example...the poster boy for servanthood?

Here is a few bullet point thoughts about servanthood and it's consequence in my life:

  • Being a servant is hard work (especially if it is basically your job description)
  • It's quickly overlooked by those you report to for those
  • passion quickly fades unless stoked and encouraged
  • a servant's spirit can quickly turn into a begrudging duty if not modeled by your team/community of workers/superiors and/or overall peer attitude/collective mindset
  • It's draining emotionally, spiritually, relationally, and physically
  • It takes great sacrifice to live/work this way (you have to sacrifice time, energy, and personal resources
So how does a leader of servants or the big kahuna servant-leader need to respond to those "under" and around him/her? This is a a huge job. A major priority on the to-do list of leading. It's unfortunate that in or corporate driven culture that neither corporations or even churches know how to support, care for and work with servants in meaningful and effective ways. Here are a few thoughts:
  • recognize the difficult task/job/ministry of serving continually
  • ask questions out of care, concern and empathy
  • communicate encouragement and support (both holistically and practically - How can I help you?)
  • Champion the everyday task of serving (just b/c it's your "job" doesn't mean I don't need a pat on the back for doing that job faithfully and with excellence). Make this a personal point of contact so they know you notice the job they do - day in and day out
  • Champion the over and above, go the extra mile acts of service that a person does (share this communally)
What it comes down to is this: servants need a champion who lead and support them privately and corporately. This is best done by leaders who "remember the days" they served continually (though they probably do that now, just not on the front lines). And at the end of the day, servants need to remember that it is an honorable thing to have love and served their neighbor, parishioner, customer as they would themselves.

Now I must change and practice what I blog.

No comments:

The Hunger Site

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Locations of visitors to this page Add to Technorati Favorites