I’m occasionally asked if there are any fairly simple leadership principles that always work. “Work for whom?” is the question I often respond with. Here’s what I mean by that.
The common misconception of leaders is that their task is to get others to do what they, the leader, wants. The goal of the true Christian leader, if at all possible, is to inspire others to creatively work toward a solution that they, the group, believes is best.
It’s my experience that once a group truly believes in an idea; they will work in harmony to pull it off. But, if they don’t, some will give it only a half-hearted effort, and a few will actually hope it fails. This is true of a family as well as a ministry, a committee or corporation.
So, the following are a few of the best practices of good leaders I’ve observed to inspire others to think outside the box. (more…)
Perception is truth to those who believe it.
I’ve previously defined a worldview as, the sum total of everything you believe to be true, whether it is or not.
When you’re a leader, some people you lead will not share your worldview. I’m not talking about whether they are Christians or not, or whether they share the same philosophy or politics. On the most elemental level, everyone believes certain facts to be true, that you do not. And, unless you understand exactly what their truth is, you can’t begin to solving problems or change in an organization. (more…)
Many leaders make the mistake of trying to introduce a big vision before they’ve done the hard work of winning the confidence of those they lead.
This blog won’t make much sense unless you’ve read my Monday blog first of, November 18. And, one of the best ways I know how to instill confidence is by identifying and solving the problems that most trouble those they lead and prevent them from doing their jobs well.
I once made this observation to the leader of a large company. “When you’re sitting on top of the mountain, you can make the mistake of thinking all is well in the village below.” This isn’t just true of big corporations; it’s true of churches, organizations and even families. Do you know, and do you care what most stresses your employees, volunteers in ministry or even your spouse and children? What questions or fears can you help them address, or at very least, show empathy for? It’s not all about you. In a Christian worldview it’s all about God and others.
“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves.” Phil 2:3 (more…)
Here’s my litmus test for a Christian leader; would the people you lead, follow you if they didn’t have to?
And, I’m not just talking about ministry leaders. Would your children, your wife, the people who are under your care, or those under your authority at work, would they follow you even if the Bible didn’t command them to do so, or they weren’t worried about their paycheck?
In the military, soldiers must follow their leaders or they’ll be jailed or shot. In a corporation, it’s called insubordination, an offense that could get you fired. But, what if they didn’t fear you, the law or the loss of a job? Would the people who God has put under your care, follow you even if they didn’t have to? What does it take to be that kind of leader?
For the next few weeks, my blogs will address the character qualities and best practices of good Christian leaders. But, today let’s examine the one characteristic every leader must possess to be truly admired by both God and man.