Servant leadership

The Voerman Group acts in keeping with the concept of Servant Leadership, a concept developed by American business consultant Robert Greenleaf. The Voerman Group uses Servant Leadership as a guiding principle – in relation to both its employees and its suppliers and customers.

Mr Ed Voerman, former Managing Director of the Voerman Group, is the Chairman and founder of the Greenleaf Centre Foundation for Servant-Leadership in the Netherlands.

Robert Greenleaf:
The American Robert Greenleaf (1904-1990) is the initiator and advocate of this leadership principle. His aim was to stimulate ‘the thoughts and actions required to build a better, more caring society’, and it was his guiding principle in his work as a director and later as a consultant in the field of management and organisational development.

A company with a heart

Voerman is a company with a conscience. Profit is only part of our success. Customer satisfaction and the well-being of our employees are paramount.

The bookservant_leadership ‘Unterwegs nach Morgenland’ (Journey to Tomorrowland) by Hermann Hesse gave him an illuminating perspective on the relations, behaviour and activities of human beings. In the book, the principal character Leo is a servant for a group of travellers. When Leo disappears, the group falls apart. The members of the group cannot survive without his care and attention. When Leo is finally found after many years of searching, he is the inspirational guide and leader of a large organisation.

From this story, Greenleaf derived the insight that great leaders are first and foremost servants, and that their greatness lies in the way they use that position to “encourage collaboration, trust, foresight, listening, and the ethical use of power and empowerment.”

Read more about it here:

Servant Leadership