Leadership tends to introduce several interesting twists in the development of leaders and followers.
How do we want others to treat us? With respect, integrity, love, appreciation, patience, etc.? If this is true, then Jesus would say treat others this way first!
We must not be influenced or directed by the practices of culture in our relationships.
It is easy to react, instead of acting as we should. Additionally, we must be careful to guard against overreacting.
Leaders must learn to act in keeping with the way we want others to act.
Leadership involves responsibility. The claim of many is that the greater the responsibility, the fewer the rights.
We live in a culture where taking responsibility is not a common practice. We could say we live in a culture where the common practice is one of blaming others. Not much has changed since the beginning.
However, quality leaders seek responsibility and take responsibility for their actions.
Leaders give credit to the team when there is victory, but take full responsibility when there is a defeat.
Rarely do we find such integrity and leadership. Yet, when we do, influence abounds. The result? People follow!
Owning a smart phone presents several challenges, especially when it comes to scheduled updates, which occur frequently. We learn several thoughts:
The speed of change.Technology is changing at immeasurable speeds.
Public demands.Anytime a new tool is released, the public puts it to the tests.
Competition.Everyone must bring their “A game” to succeed.
Spiritual leadership is called to lead people with this influence. Our culture is constantly changing, problems put our leadership to the test, and Satan competes for the souls of humanity. The task before us is not easy.
Perhaps we need a leadership update. Stay tuned for more.
To say we live in a multicultural society is a gross understatement. We can no longer think about what might come in the future; it is already on our doorstep. Additionally, we cannot think about what we will do when it happens. Clearly, multiculturalism has been here for a long time.
If we are not knowledgeable about or preparing more fervently to address it, we are way behind.
The challenge is determining how we can best approach leading within a multicultural context. A few considerations:
- Stop procrastinating and gain a better understanding of multiculturalism. Trying to deny or ignore that it exists will only create greater problems.
- Get immersed in developing relationships across those cultural boundaries. Cultural boundaries exist everywhere, not just geographically.
- Remember, we are participating in a small part of what God has done and continues to do. Who knows but we are here for such a time as this.
The depth of the subject far exceeds the expectations of one post. However, the subject is essential for the present and future understanding of leadership.
Perhaps you are familiar with the idea of insanity: “doing the same things in the same way and expecting different results.”
As amazing as it may sound, we often practice a level of insanity when approaching our leadership, we want to do the same things the way we have always done them, yet expect different results.
Our culture has changed. Demographics have changed. We have changed, whether we want to admit it or not.
What we need is a little sanity. By definition, the idea of sanity speaks of reasonable and rational behavior. Now there are two powerful words for leaders to learn.
The thought expressed does not mean we never take risks, nor does it mean we are unwilling to make changes.
The thought behind sanity involves making sure we investigate the facts, consider the pros and cons, and implement change with a reasonable approach for what is best.
We are not talking about something that is unscriptural, but rather not being tied to the traditions of men as binding for eternity.
Sanity or insanity: that is the question.
Today’s post begs a question of possibility. Is it possible in our culture to avoid negativity? The answer is, no!
We cannot completely avoid negativity. Sadly, we are surrounded by it. We often face so much negativity it is difficult to see much positive.
Since, we cannot avoid negativity, what can we do to limit its influence, or put a positive spin on it?
First, prayer is where it all starts. God promises to answer, so why not begin at His throne and seek guidance in overcoming the issue.
Second, focus on spending time with people who are positive. If we struggle to deal with negativity, a good dose of optimism from friends is a another place to help.
Third, the material we read and the messages we hear need to ring with optimism. Turning off the television is a positive beginning point. Read a good book…hey, the Bible is a good thought.
Fourth, commit to saying at least five positive things every day. Once we are comfortable with five, increase the number by five.
Much more could be said, but this is a positive start in the right direction.
Studies in the area of culture reveal numerous facts important to the direction of leading. While culture is a relative term, we do know that culture is connected to cultivating, gardening.
However, culture is defined as the beliefs, customs, arts, etc. of a particular society, group of people, time and place. Culture is characterized by a way of thinking, belief, or behavior.
We can say that culture is an environment cultivated by the people who participate in that environment.
Our world is a multi-cultural place. Also, we find numerous cultures within cultures. There are work cultures, educational cultures, religious cultures, age and gender specific cultures, and the list is unending.
Leaders work to understand the culture, but changing the culture is far from easy, if not impossible. The idea has been presented that leaders must create new cultures to draw people into a new way of thinking, believing, or behaving.
There is validity to the idea and Jesus followed this approach to the first century culture, leaving us to consider how we will lead in the twenty-first century culture.
Adding value has become a catch phrase and a popular concept connected to the vision statements of several organizations. Leaders recognize that people are drawn to the idea of receiving something that adds value to their life.
From a leadership perspective, its serves us well to consider exactly what it is that adds value to the people we attempt to reach on a regular basis. The dichotomy between what we value versus someone else develops an interesting challenge.
What areas might be considered that add value to any person in any culture or generation? The answer may possibly be as subjective as what someone determines as valuable.
However, let’s consider a few possibilities.
Physically: Regardless of our nationality, we all have physical needs. When we provide for someone’s felt needs, we add value.
Emotionally: A bit more challenging, but high on the list today. When we demonstrate emotional intelligence toward others it adds value to their life.
Spiritually: Without a doubt, this is the most significant of the three. The greatest value we can add to someone’s life involves the spiritual connection with God.
At times, a phrase evokes a well-house of emotions and strength. We possess the mental fortitude to influence the direction situations and the lives of others, but we often do not follow through because we think it will not make a difference. After all, what difference can one person make?
History records the powerful impact of one person. Vince Lombardi, Winston Churchill, Rosa Parks, and many more influenced the direction of teams, nations, and cultural mindsets.
The challenge surfaces when we consider the need for confidence, the type of confidence that believes we are the one who can and will make the difference.
A higher degree of education, social status, political appointment, or corporate position are not needed to influence situations that alter the course or direction.
Above all, we must allow God to use us as that influence. We can be that one!
Imagine the impact that could be made when leaders work together in the church to influence the direction of the world. Jesus took twelve men and turned the world upside down. Is it possible the same could be said of leaders today?
The culture we live in has a great ability to act one way, yet at the core be something completely different.
We often refer to this as hypocrisy. While this is true, we also need to understand that our culture has worked on this long enough it is now accepted and normal.
A number of tragedies over the years have occurred where individuals walked into a movie theater, high school, restaurant, or mall and began a killing rampage. One of the most common thoughts expressed by those who knew the individual is how they never expected this kind of activity.
On the surface they seemed “normal.” However, at the core they were someone quite different.
There is also a connection to spiritual leadership. How many times throughout the past century has the core of a religious leader been exposed in sinful activity?
Our leadership needs to be characterized by a core that walks with integrity, works righteousness, and speaks truth in the heart.
Here is where we begin to develop the opportunity for our greatest influence.