Authentic Servant Leadership
Nonfiction / Business / Leadership
Publisher: MindStir Media
Date Published: May 15, 2023
What kind of leader do we want to be? What's the most effective style of leadership? How can we bring our authentic selves into our workplaces to build trust and empower out teams?
Over a storied thirty-eight-year career in leadership positions and as a credentialed life coach, Mike Barnes has always been in the pursuit of continuous improvement at being an authentic servant leader. By striving to always learn, show the courage to be vulnerable, and to serve those around him with mindfulness and intentionality, his goal was to consistently build trust and empower the teams he served to achieve more than they ever thought was possible.
With careful attention to detail and thoughtful explanations, Mike shares a step-by-step process that will allow you to become an authentic servant leader and better role model in your office. From actionable examples to feedback worksheets, you'll learn how you can unlock your potential as a leader by taking on a better, more helpful mindset.
It's time to start your plan for personal and professional growth, enhance your interpersonal skills, and celebrate your continual improvement and that of those around you who will be inspired by your new way of doing business. Let's find out what drives your core values and hardwire it to your heart. Mike is ready to show you a helpful way.
"Leave a peace of your heart in everything you do."
READ AN EXCERPT BELOW...
About the Author
Mike served as Executive Vice President / CRO in the exciting beverage alcohol industry. With more than 38 years of leadership, he passionately supported serving others to pursue and achieve their full potential, which brought energetic meaning to every day. Mike recently started Barnes Leadership and Strategy Coaching where he has been a keynote speaker on authentic servant leadership (Engage the Heart Challenge the Mind). He is also the author of three children’s books. Find out more about Mike at Mikebarnescoaching.com and Mrbsbooks.com.
Excerpt from "Hardwired to the Heart"
Being a businessperson these days is a constant balancing act. Questions of how we can be most effective and productive collide with questions about what the best style of leadership is and how much we should bring our personality into the office.
I’ll be honest I never felt like I had the exact right answer. I knew I wanted to be kind, compassionate, and helpful when it came to my peers and employees, but I couldn’t put into words what that style was. Nor could I have developed an expansive vision for that kind of leadership or a method for quantifying its effectiveness and progress.
Miraculously, Michael Barnes has done all of that right here in Hardwired To The Heart. He’s taken his vast coaching and executive experience and delivered a clarion call we should all heed. Yes, being good people at work, like we are at home, is the most effective and healthiest leadership style.
He calls this being an authentic servant leader, and it’s like a breath of fresh air in a musty room.
But as much as I knew I had always wanted to embrace this style, what Michael taught me is that I have so much to learn. That’s because there’s always something new to learn, and we must unleash our inner curiosity and need for real human connection in the workplace. Without that, miscommunications, errors, and outright hostility will inevitably flourish, killing company culture and dragging down company profits.
I’ve seen a strange correlation in my time in business. As the company’s morale goes up, so do its profits. When morale sinks, profits tend to sag. It’s almost like nourishing contentment among our working peers impacts how hard they want to work and how productive they are. Who would’ve thought??
We’re all familiar with those classic workplace archetypes. There’s the stern boss ready to blow a gasket at a moment’s notice over the tiniest mistake. The chipper secretary. The quiet loner in the office. The hyper-ambitious salesman. Eager interns. The list goes on and on.
We must remember that there are people underneath all of these roles that we play, and in many cases the way we play these roles needs to evolve as we learn and grow as people.
In particular, it’s time to retire the short-tempered boss stereotype. All of us either had a boss like that or knew someone who did, a boss who felt squeezing employees and releasing anger into the workplace would produce the best results. Generations of executives have come and gone without realizing they were behaving in a way that was a disservice to their employees, their companies, and themselves.
Times are changing though, mainly because people like Michael Barnes are at the forefront of a movement that brings human nature, vulnerability, and empathy into our data-driven corporate ethos. Let’s listen for a change, sit on the same side of the desk as our office guests, and try to create a hospitable office environment.
That doesn’t mean coddling people or refusing to hold anyone accountable for errors, misjudgments, or even malfeasance, but let’s treat these circumstances as the learning experiences they are and try to find the humanity within them.
Keep these questions in mind. What does the way I’m responding to this situation say about me? Am I treating the people around me with the respect and dignity they deserve? Are any assumptions getting in the way of my understanding about what’s going on?
And lastly and most importantly: Is my behavior going to motivate my employees to do better because they feel valued and seen, or will it detract from their enthusiasm because they feel brushed off or not given constructive and specific feedback?
Michael Barnes and Hardwired To The Heart have given us a crucial roadmap for success as a business leader. It’s given me a lot to think about and has proven even more valuable the second time through. This should be required reading at your next corporate retreat.
Best of all, I’m more excited about heading into work than ever. If that’s not a win, I don’t know what is.
—J.J. Hebert, USA Today Bestselling Author