The Management Practice of Servant Leadership: A Levinasian Enrichment
This paper applies Emmanuel Levinas’ philosophy to the management practice of leadership. Specifically, it focuses on servant leadership, which is considered the most dyadic other-oriented style. While often viewed altruistically, servant leadership can still be egological if it totalizes followers to a leader’s interests and to organizational ends. This paper conceptualises an enriched version of servant leadership using key ideas taken from Levinas’ understanding of the infinite Other and then describes this style using relevant examples. This novel approach, Servant-Leadership-for-the-Other, offers a theoretical lens by which to enrich existing leadership practices as well as providing a style of leadership better suited for the twenty-first century.