Randy Gibb is the dean of the Colangelo College of Business at Grand Canyon University; he leads a college that offers academic programs at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Dr. Gibb is a former pilot and retired colonel, U.S. Air Force, having led two different flying squadrons, served as chair of the behavioral science and leadership department at the U.S. Air Force Academy and worked as a senior military professor at the Air Force Institute of Technology. He also was chair of the human and environmental systems department at Arizona State University. Dr.
Here in the Colangelo College of Business, we have three pillars:
- Servant Leadership
I’m often asked to articulate what servant leadership means to our college. The essence of servant leadership is “service before self,” or putting the organization and the people ahead of one’s own needs.
A servant leader should be the hardest working person in the organization; the one who clearly shares a vision and provides resources, training, coaching and a climate that fully supports their team. Long-term success is created if leadership is accomplished in a manner consistent with patience, kindness, humility, respect and selflessness.
Servant leadership is best defined by Jesus Himself: “Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave – just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:26–28).
A servant leader should be a steward. Sometimes, leaders come into an organization with the mindset that they are the most important person and that they are the organization. The reality is that the organization was likely around prior to any particular leader and the organization will remain long after any one leader is gone.
As a steward, a leader’s job is to serve others and improve the organization, grow their replacement and hand it off to the next leader better than they received it. Stewardship entails being solely accountable and responsible for an organization, which fits right in line with servant leadership.
As shared in Mark 9:35, “Whoever wants to be first must be last of all and servant of all.”
These ideals are the types of characteristics that the Colangelo College of Business hopes to instill in our graduates. We aim to graduate future business owners and leaders who will go into communities as servant leaders and invest in all stakeholders – to serve their community, become profitable and then reinvest in their business, their employees and their community.
If you want to learn how to lead, start serving.