Some might perceive the servant leader as being an example of a weak and ineffectual management style, and a risk to the organisation achieving its objectives and success, particularly in workplaces where command and control has historically dominated the culture. But, done well, servant leadership is anything but this.
Building the business case with leaders and managers for investing in regular and meaningful employee listening, which goes beyond the annual employee survey, has always been challenging for internal communicators. Any research findings which can add to the body of evidence to support this is welcome.
There are many ‘single points of failure’ in internal communication practice, which have the potential to stop us in our tracks and render what we do ineffective. Leaders can be one of them, but properly defining and understanding a SPOF in internal communication is the key to overcoming it.
There have never been more ways to listen to employees. Industrialising the practice of listening to employee voice and feedback is now easy, but it is another thing entirely to properly operationalise it and act on it. Organisations can’t claim to be properly listening to employees until both of these things are in place. Until they are, internal communicators and the leadership teams we serve will remain tone deaf.