News & Research Archive

Becoming a Servant Leader

Sep 15, 2008


The passing of Tim Russert reminded me about the power influence and overall greatness of what is known as the servant leader. In leadership there three types of leaders. Those leaders that are organizationally sound; and that can communicate a clear direction and overall strategy which people will follow and implement. Servant leaders are those that serve their followers with not only direction but also humility: Jesus, Gandhi, and Mother Theresa would be examples of servant leaders. A tyrant leader is someone who leads by shear force and through fear. Hitler comes to mind.


I got a chance to meet Tim Russert at a business luncheon given by the alumni of my son’s high school. I have been fortunate to have met many different types of leaders over the years including several Presidents. Tim Russert from the moment he started speaking you could feel he was one with the crowd. His humble nature, his ability to draw in his audience with his stories of his family, his career and his passions moved everyone in the room.


Tim Russert was your classic workaholic. He pushed himself in everything he did. He interviewed the most powerful people in the world in a way that was probing while fair. He also wrote books, which hit the hearts of all of us including the book on his father, “Big Russ, and Me”, as well as his collection of stories sent to him about other people’s fathers that was called “Wisdom of Our Fathers”. This book in particular created a way for all of us to remember and appreciate the little things that our fathers did that had such a lasting impact on our lives. 


The best sales people in the world are those that best serve their clients in the end. If people start counting on you because they know you can deliver, you have the best chance to become a servant leader in your field.


In Tim Russert you witnessed in his death how everyone was so deeply effected about his loss from leaders around the world, to just the average guy. You also learned just how successful and powerful he really was.


Tim was a servant leader.


Written by: Hans Hansson


Hans Hansson is President of Starboard TCN Worldwide Real Estate Services as well as a member of the Board of Directors for TCN Worldwide Real Estate. Hans has been an active broker for over 23 years in the San Francisco Bay Area and specializes in office leasing and investments. If you have any questions or comments please email or call him at (415) 765-6897. You may also check out his website,

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