Summit will focus on servant leadership

One of society’s biggest challenges in a competitive world is how to be the best that we can be and simultaneously help others be the best they can be.

That is the credo of servant leadership, and it requires an unwavering focus. How do we motivate employees to perform at a level at which they are capable, and how do we provide valuable feedback to boost their talent? Today, most managers are faced with troubling work issues such as the economic cost of workplace bullying and its impact on productivity, creativity, and innovation. Bullying does not happen just on the playground; it occurs at work. This toxic behavior is the antithesis of servant leadership because of their hugely divergent tenets and principles.

An employer can create an inclusive and engaging work culture by using tools that promote awareness and collaboration. In such a supportive environment, diversity is considered an attribute or competitive advantage. Habits that foster disharmony and dysfunction are discouraged. Negativity will not thrive in the face of mutual respect. Through commitment to the growth of people, basic attributes in the servant leader management style lead to profitability and success. Two Servant Leader-Milwaukee programs help equip the perplexed manager:

Biannual Summits: Two summits are held each year in the spring and fall. The Servant-Leader Milwaukee Fall Summit will be held on Monday Dec. 15. The theme is “Developing the Strengths of Others.” The Summit provides attendees with a chance to be with others interested in servant leadership. A panel of three, representing corporate business, public service, and an entrepreneur, speak on their personal and work-related servant leader journeys. There will be a question-and-answer session, and everyone will have an opportunity for interaction with the speakers and others. Please join us for this impactful summit. The schedule is: 7 a.m., Introduction to Servant Leadership; 7:30 to 9:30 a.m., Summit; 9:30 to 10 a.m., Coffee & Conversation. The event will be held at the Milwaukee School of Engineering Campus Center Multipurpose Room, 1025 N. Broadway, third floor. To register, visit http://wisl-cities-tour-milwaukee.eventbrite.com.

Monthly Servant Leader Roundtable Gathering: The Servant-Leader Milwaukee Roundtable deals with organizational and management matters on a monthly basis. Each month a leadership topic is explored from the perspective of the participants. Past discussions have included building community using servant leader values; addressing shared values in a diverse world; and providing healing through awareness and empathy. The group has also explored the burden of leadership, and persuasion as a tool of influence. Members of the group have proven to be warm, welcoming and wise. While the topic changes each month, the enduring theme of the Roundtable is “The Wisdom is in the Room.” Participation in the Roundtable is free. Breakfast is on your own. All are welcomed at our Roundtable gatherings, and attendees leave the discussion with real-world tips for work challenges. For more information and notes from previous roundtables, go to www.s-l-milwaukee.com. Besides Milwaukee, there are active groups that participate in the servant leader dialogue in Fond du Lac, La Crosse, Madison, Green Bay and Wausau.

Richard Pieper is the non-executive chairman of PPC Partners Inc. and is an active proponent of the concept of servant leadership.

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