In reading Leadership Is Dead, one passage particularly stood out to me:
“The wise leader understands that sharing the burden benefits the entire team over the long term. Empowering others makes tasks manageable while also allowing team members to sharpen their skills and build upon their strengths. When a leader refuses to share the load, he brings disservice to the organization because those on his team are not allowed to develop their own leadership skills, and the next generation of leaders are not developed properly for future organizational success.”
Think back to the first two kings in Israel’s history: Saul and David. Both stood out from everyone around them as a strong leader. But only one of them left behind a lasting leadership legacy.
Both Saul and David had men who were immediately attracted to them. Saul was surrounded by valiant men, while David was surrounded by society’s rejects. But clearly David was an empowering leader, and Saul was not. Want proof?
The Bible gives a lengthy list of David’s mighty men, along with quite a résumé of their heroic accomplishments. The list of Saul’s mighty men is: .
I think David was secure in the fact that God called him to lead, while Saul was constantly second-guessing.
- This made David generous, and Saul jealous.
- David liberated his men, and Saul contained his men.
- David encouraged, and Saul controlled.
In the end: David left a legacy, and Saul did not.
What kind of leader do you want to be?
UPDATE: Being secure to serve is one of the main points I tackle in my book Shepherd Leadership: The Metrics That Really Matter. Check out this short clip—