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Leaders influence everyone from the receptionist who greets them at the front desk to the person who is second in command. Attitude, perspective and customer service are reflected from the top down in churches, businesses, organizational headquarters or physician’s offices.

So I am never surprised when I am treated as an interruption by the secretary – to feel the same chill from the leader (Pastor, CEO, Doctor). If the leader is proud and sees himself/herself as superior, so will the staff. These situations will perpetuate unless someone is willing to break the cycle.

In recent days I have had opportunity to see both ends of the spectrum, both positive and negative leadership, which influenced customer service and just common courtesy. One way makes you feel significant and the other leaves you questioning your self-worth.

These experiences have made me reevaluate my own leadership. They have caused me to ask hard questions. Wrestling with the tension of leadership philosophy is a healthy exercise.

  • Do I model leadership committed to service?
  • Do I treat people as interruptions or divine appointments?
  • How do I manage my schedule and still be accessible to people?
  • Am I a joyful person that others desire to be around?
  • Do I have a plan for developing others in customer service?
  • Am I really aware of how much is caught not taught?

I have seen a vivid picture of what I don’t want to be and am building in safeguards against developing insensitive and offensive leadership habits. I have also been privileged to observe servant leadership at its best – which once again has raised the bar for my own life.

I challenge you to do some self-evaluation as it relates to the way you influence others with your leadership style. Be a leader who sets a positive example that is contagious.

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