Rawlings School of Divinity


Doctor of Education in Christian Leadership (EdD)


Brian Pinzer


Servant, Leader, Servant-leader, Shepherd, Social-science


Christianity | Educational Leadership


The purpose of this quantitative descriptive research study was to discover the most predominant leadership style, of the five styles being measured (Autocratic/Authoritarian, Bureaucratic, Democratic, Laissez-faire, or Servant-Leader), that was found within the ministry leadership of the Southern Baptist Convention, and to discover which servant-leadership model (social-science or biblical) was more predominantly followed by those using a servant-leadership style. Furthermore, the correlation of their leadership position and educational level were analyzed for those ministry leaders predominantly following the social-science model of servant-leadership. The social-science model was identified and defined through a literature review. Whereas, the biblical model was defined and identified through Scripture. Based on an extensive literature review it was discovered that much of what is termed servant-leadership being used in Christ’ Church, is more social-science than biblical. With that discovery four research questions and four hypotheses were developed to determine the style and model for the ministry leadership within the Southern Baptist Convention. The study used a hybrid survey instrument consisting of 5 demographic questions, 25 five-point Likert Scale statements to ascertain the predominant leadership style, and an additional 83 five-point Likert Scale statements to identify the predominant servant-leader model. Email invitations were sent to 10,000 prospective participants which resulted in a 6% return rate. Of those respondents, 502 valid surveys were used to determine that servant-leadership was the predominant style of leadership, and that the biblical model was the predominant model. However, through numerical and statistical analysis it was discovered that all was not as first appeared for the ministry leaders of the Southern Baptist Convention.