Tuesday, 28 June 2016


What does real and authentic leadership look like? Here is some extremely helpful ideas on becoming the leader you should be. Michael Hyatt shares
“The five marks of authentic leadership.Originally posted by Michael Hyatt

Many people have written on what it means to be a leader. Almost everyone identifies influence as the primary characteristic. By definition, this means that leadership and position are two different things. You can have a title, and a position of power, but this does not mean that you are a leader. Even people without these things can exert influence and thus leadership.

But leadership is more than influence. It certainly includes influence, but it is more. I believe it includes at least five characteristics. When I speak on this topic, I call these “the five marks of authentic leadership”:

1.  Authentic leaders have insight.

Sometimes we refer to this as vision, but that usually has exclusive reference to the future. While leaders must have vision, they need more. They need wisdom and discernment. They need to be able to look at complex situations, gain clarity, and determine a course of action. In the Bible, “[The] men of Issachar … understood the times and knew what Israel should do” (1 Chronicles 12:32). This is what I mean by insight.

2.  Authentic leaders demonstrate initiative.

They go first. They don’t sit on the sidelines. They don’t ask others to do what they are unwilling to do themselves. Instead, they lead by example. Lt. Col. Hal Moore is a great example of this. Famously depicted by Mel Gibson in the movie, We Were Soldiers, Lt. Moore told his troops, before leaving for Vietnam,
We are going into battle against a tough and determined enemy. I can’t promise you that I will bring you all home alive. But this I swear, before you and before Almighty God: that when we go into battle, I will be the first to set foot on the field, and I’ll be the last to step off. And I will leave no one behind. Dead or alive, we will all come home together, so help me God.”

3.  Authentic leaders exert influence.

It’s no coincidence that influence and influenza (the flu) come from the same root word. Real leaders are contagious.  People “catch” what they have. People are drawn to their vision and their values. They are able to gather a following and move people to act. To change metaphors, they are like human wave pools, creating a ripple effect wherever they go.

4.  Authentic leaders have impact.

At the end of the day, leaders make a difference. The world is changed because of their leadership. They are able to create real and lasting change. Unless something has shifted, they aren’t leaders. They are only entertainers. There is a big difference. The measure of leadership cannot be found in the leader; it is found in the impact the leader has on his or her followers.

5.  Authentic leaders exercise integrity.

Not every leader is benevolent. Adolf Hitler was a leader, as was Mao Zedong and Josef Stalin. They had insight, initiative, influence, and impact. Yet their lives were not integrated with the highest values. Integrity—or the lack thereof—ultimately determines the quality of a person’s impact. In a sense, this is the foundation of authentic leadership.

Leaders must be deliberate and intentional if they are to be successful. These five qualities can guide us as we grow in our ability to lead.

Friday, 24 June 2016


Confusion regarding the real results of leadership causes leaders to waste their time doing the wrong things.

The real results of leadership are people and teams who live up to their potential.
the real results of leadership
The tragedy of lousy leadership is wasted talent.

6 signs of successful leadership:

  1. Teams respect and leverage each other’s talent. 
  2. Management has focus.
  3. Teammates believe they matter.
  4. Individuals feel safe enough to try new things.
  5. Organizations enjoy high morale.
  6. Everyone embraces a “make it better” approach. “Good enough” isn’t good enough.

6 behaviors that deliver the real results of leadership:

#1. Eliminate distractions. Define what matters more by helping people stop wasting time, talent, and resources on what matters least. Try asking, “What are you doing that prevents you from giving your time and energy to what matters now?”
#2. Highlight progress while working to make things better. “How can we make this better?”
#3. Call out drifting. “You’re better than this.” Real respect expects others to bring their best. 
  1. What do you want for yourself?
  2. What are you actively doing to achieve what you want for yourself?
  3. How can I maximize your potential?
  4. How can we hold each other accountable?
#4. Point out what isn’t working with a solution orientation. Lean into awkward situations.
  1. This doesn’t seem right. Is it ok with you?
  2. This isn’t what we agreed to do. How can we get back on track?
  3. We’re falling short. What can we do to make this better?
#5. Set measurable goals with people, not for them.
  1. How might you build on past success?
  2. How might you reach higher?
  3. When will the next step be done?
  4. How are you challenging yourself?
Embrace aspiration over irritation.
#6. Coach – don’t drive – people to achievement.STOP WASTING ENERGY – DELIVER

Monday, 20 June 2016

12 Dont's of Tough conversations

A great Post by Dan Rockwell

Success includes not shooting yourself in the foot!
unacceptable behavior becomes acceptable when allowed to persist

12 Don’ts of Tough Conversations:

  1. Don’t use “we” when you mean “you”.
  2. Never allow fuzzy language. Exercise candor and precision when fuzzy feels safe.
  3. Don’t press through when emotion is high. Emotional stress limits creative solution-finding. Self-justification is inevitable.
  4. Don’t drag things out. Take a break for emotions to cool (#3 above.), but don’t wait till next week. Urgency is appropriate if it’s an important issue. Why all the emotion if things can drag out for a month or two? Emotional stress may indicate that things have dragged on too long.
  5. Never have the same conversation three times. Unacceptable behavior becomes acceptable when allowed to persist. Impose higher controls and granular accountability if problems persist.
  6. Forget about offering options when you aren’t willing to discuss them. If you’re going to give direction, do it.
  7. Don’t adopt an adversarial posture. Help teammates get what they want. You lose when you try to win a tough conversation.
  8. Don’t take responsibility to fix someone. No one enjoys being fixed. People grow. They don’t need fixed.
  9. Don’t expect someone to excel where they lack aspiration, talent or strength. If this is dragging on for months, adjust their responsibilities, reassign them, or manage them out.
  10. Never offer suggestions before others design their own. Don’t solve problems for people. “What would you like to do about this?” Develop three or four possible solutions and choose one.
  11. Don’t keep controlling. Give freedom as you see progress. The rule of thumb is controls go up as problems persist and down as progress is achieved.
  12. Don’t speak down. Poor leadership skills contribute to nagging issues. Maybe procrastinating – on your part – has made the situation worse. If you think you have it all together, you don’t.
What should leaders avoid  during tough conversations?

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Six vows good leaders make and keep

Good leaders vow to do, or not to do certain things in order to honor Jesus and be fruitful and godly leaders. Here Rick Warren shares six great vows leaders are willing to make and keep.

Originally posted by Rick Warren
Leaders are always defined by self-imposed standards. I’m not talking about standards set by other people, but standards they set for themselves. Great leaders always expect more from themselves than they do from their followers. They put forth more effort as well. That’s leadership.
If you were to look through the New Testament for the phrase “make every effort,” you’d find it six times. They represent six important vows we need to make as leaders. I believe these six vows will lead to an effective and productive ministry.

1) Vow to maintain integrity

“Make every effort to be found spotless, blameless, and at peace with him” (2 Peter 3:14).
God doesn’t expect us to be perfect. No one is perfect. To be spotless and blameless means to live with integrity. How do you maintain integrity if you’re not perfect? You need to be transparent. A person of integrity is not claiming to have it all together in every area. On the contrary, the person of integrity is willing to be open about their strengths and weaknesses.
Having integrity also means living what you say you believe. You model what you teach. And you tell the truth, even when it’s tough. All leadership is built on trust. And trust comes from having the reputation for living out what you believe and for telling the truth. As a pastor and leader, people must trust you.
Will you make a commitment to lead with integrity? Will you be honest about both your strengths and weaknesses? Will you commit to living your sermons out every week? Will you tell the truth to those you lead even when it’s tough?

2) Vow to forgive those who hurt you.

“Make every effort to live in peace with all men. See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up” (Hebrews 12:14-15).
Leaders forgive those who hurt them. You will be hurt in ministry. It’s going to happen. It’s a given. You will be hurt both intentionally and unintentionally. You will be hurt by those who recognize what they’re doing and those who don’t. You cannot be in ministry without being hurt. If you call the shots, you’re going to take the shots.
But you’ve got to be willing to forgive those who try to take you down. If you allow bitterness to build, it will choke your heart for God and your love for people until your heart just shrivels.
Will you forgive when every bone in your body wants to retaliate?

3) Vow to relax and trust God.

“Anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his. Let us therefore make every effort to enter into God’s rest” (Hebrews 4:11).
If you’re going to be in ministry, you’ve got to learn to relax. You need to be concerned about the people around you, but at the same time, you’re not God. You can’t bear everybody’s burden all the time.
How do you release those burdens? First, you’ve got to pray. Ultimately, God is the one responsible for your flock. He’s the one responsible for the growth of your ministry. Share your burdens with him in prayer.
Then you need to spend some time in God’s Word meditating on his promises. Remember what God has done in the past – in God’s Word and in your own life. God has a good track record of taking care of us. Remember what God has done for you when you’re tempted to let the stress of your ministry position overwhelm you.
Will you commit to surrendering your stress to God?

4) Vow to be an encourager.

“Let us make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification” (Romans 14:19).
As a Christian leader, you should build people up rather than tear them down. God has called you to be an encourager, not a discourager. Take the time to look beyond the problems and look at the potential of those you lead. People get discouraged in life; you need to be a source of encouragement.
As pastors, we are dispensers of hope. That’s what it means to be a Christian leader. You bring the hope of Jesus into a hopeless situation. You help people who seem to be helpless. You let them know they can do it.
Will you be a voice of encouragement in your community, in your church, in your home?

5) Vow to be a peacemaker.

“Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace” (Ephesians 4:3).
Leaders are called to make every effort to reduce conflict. Our society is filled with conflict. Jesus said, “Blessed are the peacemakers.” How do you make peace in such a fragmented society?
You’ve got to deal with different points of view. Not everybody is like you in your church. And that’s good. Everyone has something to contribute. The perspective of those who see the world differently can add something indispensible to your ministry.
At Saddleback we value unity, not uniformity. You can walk hand-in-hand without seeing eye-to-eye on every issue. God can overlook lack of programs in your church. He can overlook a lack of ability. But God will not bless a divided church.
That means one of your most important jobs is to promote unity. Ten times in the first five chapters of Acts, the Bible says the church was unified. When you have the unity of Acts, you will have the power of Acts.
Will you have the courage to unify your church when it is being pulled in many different directions?

6) Vow to never stop growing.

“Make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive…” (2 Peter 1: 5-8).
Learning is the lifestyle of leadership. The moment you think you know it all, you’re dead in the water. You must never stop growing. Growing ministries require growing leadership. You’ve got to train yourself continually.
Keep reading. Get a mentor. Solicit feedback. Ask questions. Always look for ways to keep growing in your character and your skills. The very nature of leadership is tied to growth. You’ve got to grow if you are going to lead others to grow.
Take a regular look at yourself. Where do you need to grow? What do you need to learn? What’s the best way to get the training you need?
Make a learning plan every year. Your future leadership depends upon it. Will you commit to keep growing as a leader and as a person?

Monday, 6 June 2016

Seven Characteristics of Mercy

Devotional image from Rick Warren

I love this post by Risck Warren!

Mercy is like a diamond; it is multi-faceted. Today we’re going to look at seven facets of mercy, because I guarantee if you’ll learn how to be an agent of mercy, it will transform your relationships.
  1. Mercy means being patient with people’s quirks. How do you get more patience for your kids, spouse, or friends? The Bible says in James 3:17, “The wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy” (NLT, second edition). The wiser you become, the more patient and merciful you become.
  2. Mercy means helping anyone around you who is hurting. You cannot love your neighbor as yourself without being merciful. Proverbs 3:27 says, “Whenever you possibly can, do good to those who need it” (TEV). But God is not simply watching what you do. He’s watching your attitude: “[When you] show mercy, do it cheerfully” (Romans 12:8 NIV).
  3. Mercy means giving people a second chance. When somebody hurts us, we normally want to get even or write that person off. But the Bible says, “Stop being bitter and angry and mad at others. Don’t yell at one another or curse each other or ever be rude. Instead, be kind and merciful, and forgive others, just as God forgave you because of Christ” (Ephesians 4:31-32 CEV).
  4. Mercy means doing good to those who hurt you. Mercy is giving people what they need, not what they deserve. Why should we do it? Because that’s what God does with you: “Love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because [God] is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful” (Luke 6:35-36 NIV).
  5. Mercy means being kind to those who offend you. You’ve got to be more interested in winning people to Christ than in winning the argument. Jude 1:22-23 says, “Show mercy to those who have doubts. Save others by snatching them from the fire of hell. Show mercy to others, even though you are afraid that you might be stained by their sinful lives” (GW).
  6. Mercy means building bridges of love to the unpopular. This is what I call premeditated mercy, because you intentionally build friendships with people who don’t have friends or who are not accepted at work or in society. When the Pharisees questioned why Jesus ate with tax collectors and other unpopular people, Jesus said, “‘I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.’ For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners” (Matthew 9:13b NLT, second edition).
  7. Mercy means valuing relationships over rules. Romans 13:10 says, “Love fulfills the requirements of God’s law.” If you want to show mercy, put people before policies. Put their needs before procedures. Put relationships before regulations. Choose love over law.