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Servant leadership is an approach that emphasizes stewardship of resources instead of hierarchical, top-down chain of command. It is based on the principle that the person closest to a resource is also the one with the knowledge necessary to make decisions about that resource, rather than someone up the chain of command who may know little about the resource.

Servant leadership through stewardship also guards against the "design by committee" that often results in consensus organizations. When an entire group of people, with their mixed biases and levels of knowledge, decide how to manage a resource, the best interest of that resource is rarely adequately considered. Rather, consensus should be used as a mechanism for delegating authority to stewards and evaluating the results of that delegation.

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