I have read many books on leadership and there isn’t much that is new under the sun. There are 15 steps to this and 8 keys to that, but there is not a one size fits all for leadership. The reality is that leaders should always be on the look out for what people are writing and hone the skill of being a student of their times, their field, and their convictions. Some of the things that I have discovered over the years that have helped me as a leader are as follows:
Follow-ability: I know this is not an actual word, but it is an excellent principle. This doesn’t just relate to people that are following you, which is absolutely necessary if you are going to call yourself a leader. Followability also refers to the fact that even as a leader you still have to be a follower, which we hear Paul talking about when he encourages the Corinthian believers to follow as he follows. It is important to both look at what you are sowing into who is coming behind you, but who are you following? Do you have a mentor or a coach? Who do you purposefully have in your world that is inputing health and keeping you accountable. Who are you aspiring to be or do you think you have arrived because you have the title of leader? It is important that we always practice what we expect others to do.
Intentionality: As leaders we have to be very intentional about how we live our lives. Part of this intentionality is being a self-leader. Before I seek to lead others I must first be a good steward of my own life. A few years ago I was challenge to be intentional about being better. It is my responsibility to take care of my world. This means taking a good look at the many different areas of our lives: finances, physical health, emotion health, and spiritual health, relationships and personal development. These are all areas in which we must be intentional so that we can achieve longevity in what we do and fruitfulness.
Consistency: Brian Houston once said, ‘everything about you says something about you.’ It is vital for a leader to lead no matter where they are, no matter what the circumstance, and no matter who is watching. This seems like a very basic thing and simple, but doing it is so important. Becoming a father highlights this fact in such powerful ways as you are trying to invest in your kids. Even though some days you are tired and frustrated, you have to be consistent with your kids or else you send very confusing messages. This principle crosses everything we do in life, be consistent and it will produce fruit.
No matter what sphere of work or life you are in, these principles will help you be healthier, more productive, and reliable. All it takes is making some choices in the right direction. Springboard exists to help people on this pathway, helping others realise and release their God-given potential. If you get a sense that these are some things you need to seriously consider then don’t hesitate, make a choice today to be intentional about being a better version of yourself. Doing this makes you a leader whether you have a title or not!