Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Workday Wednesday: How to Be a Leader

No matter what job you hold, leadership is a quality that managers tend to look for in their employees.  However, not everyone is in agreement on what leadership is or how it acts, so I thought I would throw my 2 cents into the pot and share with you my experience in developing leadership skills based on our call as Christian brothers and sisters.

1) Don't wait to be asked to serve

Every organization has plenty of people who wait for someone else to come along and fix their problems, fill their needs, and improve conditions.  Leaders don't wait for someone else.  Leaders are that someone.  They see the need, and they look to see what they can do to fill it.  They see the problem, and they look to see what they can do to help solve it.  They see the conditions, and they take steps to improve it.

2) Don't be afraid to stand out

Leaders were not born to fit in, they were made to stand out.  If you're going to be a leader, you're going to find yourself on the wrong side of public opinion many, many times.  It's human nature to want to fit in, but a real leader has to put aside that desire to be just like everyone else in order to be free to lead.

3) Take responsibility for your choices, and the consequences that follow

Leaders know that choices have consequences. They know that they alone are in control of the choices they make.  When you're a leader, you have a lot of responsibility and a lot of people looking to you to show them the way.   If you jump off the cliff, the people who follow you are going with you as well.  Taking responsibility for the choices you make and for the consequences that follow may require you to pay a high price for those mistakes, but it will also help you not to make the same mistake more than once.

4) Never expect more from others than you demand of yourself

If you wouldn't do the work yourself, don't expect someone else to do it either. You can't lead people somewhere you've never been, and you won't understand the problems they face or be able to offer solutions unless you travel that path first.

5) Be an encourager

Encourage the people around you.  Recognize their talents. Lift them up.  Be the one that cheers them on when they are discouraged.  Most of all, believe in them more than they believe in themselves.  Help them to see the greatness that is possible within them so that they can live up to what you have set before them.

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