Leaders are glad to serve the needs of others. Often they are too glad to serve the needs of others.
Most people in the nonprofit sector have a service mindset. They are at their organization to serve their cause and serve the people benefiting from the cause.
Because of this, nonprofit leaders are always eager to serve their people. They know that when they serve their employees, they are serving the people who normally serve their clients.
This is both good and bad.
Good for the following reasons:
- The leader has a service mindset and is ready to do what is needed to serve his people. Even if it means spending time and money.
- Not only do they focus on meeting the needs of their people, but they are glad to do it. They serve their people with joy and excitement.
- The leader is willing to do things outside of his comfort zone and strength zone. He will go to great lengths to serve and help, even if it makes him feel uncomfortable.
Bad for the following reasons:
- The leader wants to serve too many people, and will not focus on serving the highly productive people who will get the most results from the leader’s service.
- He tries to serve people in areas that he is not strong, and in areas that he is weak. It’s ok for a leader to do this a little bit, but must not make it a habit because he becomes unproductive and is efficient in his work.
- He becomes burnt out and his performance suffers as a result.
My thinking is that we should always do what we can to serve the people we lead. However, it’s our responsibility to focus that time of service in the areas of our strength and on the most productive people in our organization.