Summary: Before making any decision we need to do three things: 1). Get all the facts you can 2). Be open to new ideas 3). Hear all sides of the story before you make your leadership decisions. Ten points
Leadership Tips From the Wisest Human of All Time
Most things tend to rise or fall on the basis of leadership. If we have great leaders we are able to enjoy blessings but if we follow incompetent leaders we suffer in numerous ways. Is it little wonder that people have their strongest opinions about the people in positions of power.
Survey on what people want most in leaders from www.Barna.org
What People Want (1997)
At least 3 out of 4 people want leaders who…
Motivate people to get involved (87%)
Negotiate a compromise when there is conflict (78%)
Identify the course of action to take (77%)
Make decisions which are in the best interests of the people, even if those decisions might not be popular (76%)
Train and develop other leaders to help (75%)
Over half of people want leaders who…
Describe a vision for the future (63%)
Create the plans necessary to implement the vision (61%)
Supervise the work of staff people (61%)
Manage the day-to-day details and operations of the group they lead (56%)
A little over 1 out of 4 people want leaders who…
Give up his/her personal convictions to satisfy the desires of the majority (29%)
Fight for things to stay the way they are (26%)
Caution to newly promoted executives—remember what the mamma whale told the baby whale: “When you get to the top and start letting off steam, that’s the time you’re most apt to be harpooned.”
A football coach gave this advice on how to deal with failures. “When you’re about to be run out of town, get out in front and make it look like you’re heading a parade.”
Bits & Pieces, April 30, 1992
Illustration: A Good Leader
Leadership is the ability to put the plans into practice, and to accomplish the specified objectives through the skillful management of people, time, and tangible resources. A good leader is one who is able to motivate people; one who is capable of making good decisions, even under pressure or in conditions of uncertainty; one who can guide people through actions as well as words.
How to Find Your Church, George Barna, pp. 104-105
Solomon, the wisest human whoever lived, because of the wisdom given to him by God, gives us many key principles about leadership worth considering.
1. TIMING - Prov. 24:27 - "Prepare your outside work, make it fit for yourself in the field; and afterward build your house."
Solomon taught that we should carry out our work in its proper order.
Illustration: I remember farmers in Iowa, where I grew up, who became so enamored with extraneous projects in April and May that they were unable to get their crops in on time. When an early freeze came in October, they lost most of their crops. This not only caused them a great financial loss but also a terrible disgrace in the entire community where their credibility was shattered.
Illustration: People who put a lot of their money in bubble stocks during the dot.com boom are not happy to get pennies on the dollar for their investments. It is possible to be sincere but to experience severe loss merely on account of poor timing. We need to be sure that we lead with proper preparation, development of our resources and people as well as the sequencing that is determined by the leading of the Holy Spirit.
2. PLANNING - "The plans of the diligent lead surely to advantage but everyone who is hasty comes to poverty." (Prov. 21:5) Solomon teaches us the importance of wise forethought before we engage in activities. Too many people make hasty shortcuts and end up with crumbling structures, families and relationships. It is easy to rush ahead impulsively but history is riddled with millions of case studies of people who failed to plan. "Failure to plan is a recipe for planning to fail."
Illustration: Hudson Taylor
Hudson Taylor had definite convictions about how God’s work should be done. We can make our best plans and try to carry them out in our own strength. Or we can make careful plans and ask God to bless them. “Yet another way of working is to begin with God; to ask His plans, and to offer ourselves to Him to carry out His purposes.”
Wycliffe Handbook of Preaching and Preachers, W. Wiersbe, p. 243
3. KEEP CURRENT - "Know well the condition of your flocks and put your heart intot caring for your herds." (Prov. 27:23) Too many Moms and Dads are not keeping current with the concerns, fads and problems of their children and suffer needlessly. Contextualized leaders ask God to help them stay up with the day to day concerns of their people. We all need cultural relevance if we are going to remain effective.
4. BE COURAGEOUS - "The wicked run away when no one is chasing them, but the godly are a bold as lions." (Prov. 28:1) God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power (ability), love and self-discipline." (2 Tim. 1:7) Solomon simply echoed the command given to Joshua when he embarked on taking possession of the promised land, "Be strong and courageous and act. Do not fear or be dismayed. For the Lord God goes with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work of the house of God is accomplished." We can be courageous because the Lord God infuses us with His courage, strength and authorization.