Name: Chris Bower
Business Title: President/CEO
Company: Endurance Federal Credit Union
Favorite Musician: Eagles
Favorite Vacation: Costa Rica
Favorite Restaurant: La Fiesta in Duncan, Oklahoma
BILL MARKLEIN: What is in the DNA of a servant leader?
CHRIS BOWER: Servant leadership is taking on the responsibility for the needs of others. It is selfless and ethical leadership with encourages leaders to be open and honest with their subordinates. I also feel it is letting others see you serve and encouraging them. You have to show that you care and you must invest in your staff. Never take all the credit and make sure the right people get the credit they deserve.
BILL MARKLEIN: What has been the most important factor(s) in your leadership development journey?
CHRIS BOWER: I have had several mentors along my leadership journey! But it was the experiences I had with non-servant leaders I believe had the biggest impact on me. It became very clear to me working with these individuals that their leadership was not effective and this is not how I wanted to be led. So I was determined given the opportunity I would lead differently.
"You have to show that you care and you must invest in your staff."
BILL MARKLEIN: How does Emotional Intelligence, the awareness and management of your own emotions and the emotions of others, play a role in your leadership?
CHRIS BOWER: A leader with emotional intelligence can effectively manage their emotions that occur within a collaborative setting. After our name change and rebrand it was apparent we needed to create a new culture within the credit union. As we are developing our new culture over the past few months this has played a big role for me. It was important to connect with our team and influence them on the importance of this change. I feel being able to understand and reason with others has helped me through this process.
BILL MARKLEIN: Who has made the most positive impact on your life and what is this individual’s attributes?
CHRIS BOWER: This is hard to nail down to just one person. My mother showed me hard work, empathy, good judgment and always showing love. My father motivated me with drive and to never quit. I think we take a little piece from everyone we come into contact with. At least the people that make an impact or took the time to mentor. For me that would be a long list.
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Take the time to remember where you started and how you got to the place you are. Give back to those who are wanting/needing your mentoring.