Leaders Must Make Disciples

When I read through the New Testament, I see countless examples of leaders who, at their core, were passionate about making disciples. These men, following the example set before them by Jesus, poured themselves into those that were close to them. In order to be a true leader, you must make disciples, not fans.

Discipleship is a core of leadership

Photo by Toa Heftiba

Anyone can have fans. Fans observe you from a distance. They see the good, but never the ugly. To fans, they see no possibility of wrongdoing because there is no vulnerability.

A true leader is vulnerable and transparent. One who willingly opens up about shortcomings. One who compassionately walks with those around them and lifts them up. But also one who corrects and gently rebukes.

When Courage Isn’t Sexy

There is a kind of courage authors use as their clay for the molding of a love story. It’s the same fabric directors use to weave together a cape for their hero. A courage that wins the girl, saves the world, and lives to tell the tale.

The “sexy” kind of courage.

Logo for Catalyst

Image courtesy of Catalyst

Then, there’s the courage that’s not nearly as attractive. It’s less of a leap into the CEO’s chair and more of a step into the whisper of God. It’s the courage of owning up to a poor decision that hurt an employee. The courage of stepping onto the road of reconciliation with a family member. A courage that may not be sexy, but surely is good.

We may be slower to speak of this side of courage, but it’s the courage effective leaders must practice often.

Contextual Leadership: Why Leaders Must Adapt To Their Team

Speaking to Bill Simmons about the championship hangover the Golden State Warriors are experiencing, head coach Steve Kerr mused, “there’s a malaise that’s settled in. We just don’t have that same edge we’ve had the last couple of years. And I’m perfectly fine with that because it’s human nature [for motivation to wane after a championship] and we’ve got to pace ourselves and get to the end of the year.”

How basketball coaches and players adapt to increase performance

Photo by JC Gellidon

Kerr’s response made me rewind the segment and listen again, this time with increased attentiveness and vigor. In the age of scripted interview answers, his raw authenticity was shocking. Yet, it also speaks volumes about Kerr’s sharp understanding of team dynamics, and his acceptance of the new-age role of a coach. In days gone by, sports coaches took a more hard-line, militaristic approach to leading. Now, the elite coaches lead contextually, changing their ‘style’ based on the situation, and the needs of the team at that time.

Zig Ziglar And The Healthy Leader: How Looking At The Wheel Of Life Can Make You Healthier

A Guest Article By Mark Timm, CEO of Ziglar Family

Zig Ziglar taught that in order to be truly successful in life, one should be experiencing some level of success and balance in each of 7 key areas of life: Physical, Family, Mental, Financial, Spiritual, Career, and Personal.  Mr. Ziglar called it the “Wheel of Life,” and it is what I keep in mind when I’m trying to create healthy habits to keep my life in balance.

Zig Ziglar's wheel of life will help you become a healthy leader

With that in mind, here are some habits I employ in each of these areas:

Physical:

I have a history of going a little overboard with the “healthy physical habits” – for example, weekly fasting or excessive training for athletic competitions, etc.  As I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized it’s actually healthier to strive for sustainable balance in this area, even if it means not being so rigorous. I now take the approach of disciplining myself to make those healthy choices as often as I can, without going overboard.

Servant Leadership: Each of Us Has an Opportunity to Serve

A Guest Article By Ken Blanchard

Sometimes when I’m leading a session for a big group of managers, I’ll ask, “How many of you think of yourself as a leader?” Usually, only about one-third of them raise their hands. Somehow they think the word leader is reserved for high-level positions like president or CEO.

Book cover for Ken Blanchard's Servant Leadership In Action

But each of us has the ability to influence someone else, whether it be a co-worker, a child at home, a spouse, or a friend. Anytime you are trying to influence the thinking, beliefs, or development of another person, you are engaging in leadership. Of course, there are traditional organizational leadership responsibilities that involve goals and objectives, but if you think beyond those confines, you’ll realize that everyone is a leader—you are a leader—unless you’re stranded on an island by yourself!