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Number one value in Leadership: Relationships
you cannot have bad relationships and be a good leader. Now I am not saying you are not tough, honest, push hard… but its done in a way that your team knows you love them.
I had a girl in my youth group. Troubled home… she was 14 going on 40. She was smart as a whip, disciplined, street smart and could be a total disturbance. She was a leader on our youth team… she could lead the whole Frosh girl class on a tantrum… she could cause the group to lose focus… she had that much power. I was so mad and pulled her into my office after youth one night… I was ready to just rip into her and tell her she can no longer be a leader… and then it hit me. All this girl has ever had in her life is being ripped on and ripped off and ripped under. I realized it had to be loved. So I spent 15 minutes praising her. Talking about her gifts, her responsibility and even ended it by saying “If I had 2 more of you we could run a small country”. And then at the end I said “this is why it is so valuable to me that you use your gifts and influence to help push the other girls to Christ and not use it to distract them”. That was it. Then I told her again how much I loved her and appreciated her in leadership. Over night she changed. She got it and I even bet she knew what I was doing… but all the more she appreciated it.
Number one Rule in leadership: Assume more responsibility than required. It is not enough to “own it”. Do you lead that particular area like you are getting ready to show it to the world… or to Jesus. Do you want someone to take care of your ministry, your job, your task, your vision… the way you take care of your car? (not if it’s me… my car is a mess)
The point is that to truly lead it is not enough to do just the bare minimum or just the job description. Leadership sees beyond that. I asked a girl once to type up some cards and put them into a file box so that I could look up certain topics… this was the day before computers. I came into my office a little later and my books were all rearranged and I was not happy. I did not have them in any particular order but I at least kind of remembered where they were. I asked her why she did that - and I wasn’t real happy. She said while typing up the cards it occurred to her it would be easier for me to find the books if they were alphabetized by title. And you know what… she was right… and she did a great job. she went above and beyond! Great leadership always goes above and beyond.
Number one Goal in leadership: work harder on yourself than your job or position or skill.
You are you… you are the leader that you bring to the table…so if you want to be a better leader you must first work on you… not your skill or talent or position. Its like being a great artist, but you lack the personal leadership skills to buy enough supplies, get up early to paint, list your stuff on line, get to exhibits on time… You are a great artist… you don’t have to focus working on that… you do need to focus on working on yourself as a leader.