This is from an interesting little book I found called "Culture craft: leadership for organizational health" by Rick Sessoms and Colin Buckland.
They are discussing what some of the practical implications are of following Jesus' model of servant leadership as exemplified by John 13.
"Leading with the 'towel' means believing in people enough to empower them with the authority and the resources and the information as well as the accountability they need to be the best they can be. It means creating an environment safe enough for them to risk giving all... and sometimes fail in their giving... and encouraging them to risk again. Leading with the 'towel' implies that I don't have to be the source of every good idea, but we discover the vision together. It is about creating an atmosphere where everyone is free to tell the truth, especially to the leaders. Leading with the 'towel' means allowing people to express their passion and defending those privately and publicly who don't compromise principle for profit. It also means treating each person with the sacred understanding that they are uniquely crafted in the image of their Creator - not in mine. Leading with the 'towel' is enabling people to make decisions and to pursue God-given dreams, and celebrating their accomplishments.
Leading with the 'towel' means serving those I lead not so that they will serve me, but so that they will serve others.
[pp.40-41, emphasis in original]