Godly Leaders Can Inspire Everyone To Pursue One Vision

And I told them of the hand of my God which had been good upon me, and also all of the king’s words that he had spoken to me. So they said, “Let us rise up and build.” Then they set their hands to this good work. (Nehemiah 2:18)

The market of a godly leader is one who can inspire all sorts of people to pursue the same vision.

Nehemiah did such a good job casting the vision God had given him that people from all professions and persuasions immediately joined in. Although the vision was to rebuild the walls around Jerusalem, most of those who joined Nehemiah in pursuing this vision were anything but builders. They were…

  • Priests
  • Fathers and their sons
  • Fathers and their daughters
  • Natural-born Israelites
  • God-fearing foreigners
  • Goldsmiths
  • Perfume makers
  • Leaders
  • Laypeople
  • Those living within the city
  • Those who lived outside the city
  • Merchants

With one voice they cried out, “Let’s rise up and build!” and they got down to business.

All these different people buying-in to one godly leader’s vision!

This is part 5 in my series on godly leadership. Be sure to check out the previous posts to see some of the factors that enabled Nehemiah to cast such a compelling, unifying vision:

Notes From The Global Leadership Summit

I had an amazing time last week at the Willow Creek Global Leadership Summit. Every year I came away with some many thoughts, and a brand new passion for the various leadership roles in which I get to serve.

Below are just a few of my notes that I jotted down during an intense two days.

Hybels - everybody winsBill Hybels—The Lens Of Leadership

“Everybody wins when a leader gets better.”

“Armed with enough humility, leaders can learn from anyone.”

Hybels discussed four leadership lenses:

1.   Passionate leader (depicted by vibrant bright red frames)

  • They understand unbridled passion in leadership.
  • “Passion is like protein for the team.”
  • A motivated worked will outperform an unmotivated worker by 40%.
  • People are more motivated by working for a passion-filled leader than they are by compensation or perks.
  • Passion comes from a mountain-top dream, or a valley-deep frustration of current settings.

2.   People leader (cool frames, but cracked lenses)

  • An organization will only be as healthy as the top leader wants it to be.
  • This world needs more pastors of businesses, factories, medical offices, military units, etc.

3.   Performance leader (self-adjusting glasses)

  • Leaders ask: what progress should be made? how do we measure this? what doesn’t need to be measured?
  • Every worker wants to know how they are doing. For the leader, it’s cruel to hire someone and never let them know how they’re doing. Every staff member should get an update at least every six months.

4.   Legacy leader (sunglasses with a rearview mirror [cyclist])

  • Every once in awhile we need to look behind to see what legacy we’re leaving behind.
  • Leaders should reflect on this annually.
  • If my leadership assignment were to end today, what legacy would I leave?

Mulally - overcommunicateAlan Mulally—CEO Boeing and Ford Motor Company

An average commercial airline has 4 million parts!

  • People first
  • Include everyone
  • Create a compelling vision
  • Present a workable strategy
  • Set clear performance goals
  • Relentless implementation
  • Share lots of data
  • “Over-communicate the plan and the current status against the plan.”
  • Instill a positive can-do attitude
  • Keep your emotional resilience
  • Have fun

 

Melinda Gates - hear the criesMelinda Gates—Gates Foundation

Melinda says of herself, “I am an impatient optimist. We are changing the world, but we need to change it faster.”

 

“At the end of the day, you have to hear the cries of those in need, let your heart break and act in courage.”

Jossy Chacko—Empart

“All of us have been entrusted with something. What are we doing to leverage it?”

In thinking about the parable of the talents … “To Jesus, faithfulness is not just sitting with what you have been given, but multiplying what you have been given. God’s mission is not maintaining.”

“Playing it safe is not enough for a follower of Jesus Christ.”

Three principles for expanding our leadership reach:

Jossy Chacko - faithfulness1. Enlarge your vision

  • “When people hear my vision, they should know the size of my God.”
  • “An enlarged vision should keep us driven.”
  • “Do not be confused about what people say about your vision; trust what God has said to you.”

2. Empower your people

  • “Leadership is about taking wise chances and giving people opportunities.”
  • “Your leadership reach will be determined by your empowerment choices.”
  • Three things to keep in mind: (1) Focus on building their character before empowering them; (2) Empowerment has to be through relationship; and (3) Make sure we have agreed on the right outcomes, and have the right way to measure them.

3. Embrace risk

  • Faith = risk. Without faith it is impossible to please God = without taking risks it is impossible to please God.
  • Paradigms to be changed: (1) See risk as your friend to love, not as your enemy to be feared; (2) See comfort and safety as your enemies; and (3) Increase your pain threshold.
  • “Your leadership capacity is in direct relationship to your pain threshold.”
  • “Don’t allow the fear of losing what we have to lose what God has in store for you.”
  • “By me not taking risks, who is missing out?”

Bradberry - EQDr. Travis Bradberry—TalentSmart

All inputs into the brain travel through the limbic system first (emotional center) before the inputs travel to the frontal cortex. The EI (emotional intelligence) center is in the front of the brain, just above the left eye.

Only 36% of people are able to accurately identify their emotions as they happen.

EQ (the Emotional Quotient that measures emotional intelligence) is not IQ.

EQ can be improved all throughout life.

Four components of emotional intelligence:

 1. Self-awareness: knowing my emotions, and knowing my tendencies. I need to lean into my discomfort if I want to improve.

   2. Self-management: what I do with this increased self-awareness. This is not “stuffing” my feelings. The biggest mistake is only trying to manage negative emotions; positive emotions need to be managed too.

   3. Social awareness: focusing more on others than on myself.

   4. Relationship management: using the first three skills in concert. Seeing how my behavior is affecting the other person, and then adjusting accordingly.

 

How to increase my EQ:

  1. Control stress—stress under control is healthy; chronic stress is unhealthy. Gratitude reduces the stress hormone cortisol.
  2. Clean up my sleep hygiene—sleep cleans up toxic hormones in the brain. To get better sleep: (1) Don’t take any kind of sleeping pill; and (2) Reduce “blue lights” in the evening.
  3. Reduce my caffeine input—especially after noon.

Ideal team playerPatrick Lencioni—Author

Three qualities of an ideal team player:

1.   Humble

  • Lacking self-confidence is not humility.
  • “Denying skills and downplaying abilities is not humility.”

2.   Hungry

  • Strong work ethic
  • Driving hard

3.   Smart

  • Not intellectual smarts, but people smarts = EQ

“To develop people, we have to have the courage to humbly and constantly talk to people about their ‘stuff.’”

McChesney - execution disciplinesChris McChesney—Franklin Covey

Rahm Charan asked:

  • Q: Do leaders struggle more with strategy or execution? A: Execution.
  • Q: Are leaders more educated in strategy or execution? A. Strategy.

“The hardest thing a leader will ever do is drive a strategy that changes someone’s behavior.”

There are four disciplines for making changes in human behavior:

1.  Focus

  • “Focus on the wildly important.”
  • If a team focuses on 2-3 goals, they are likely to get them done. But if there are 4-10 goals, momentum is killed. At 11+ goals, the team is going backward.
  • We narrow the focus by coming up with a WIG: wildly important goal (this lives at the intersection of ‘really important’ and ‘not going to happen’).

2.  Leverage

  • “What are the fewest number of battles necessary to win the war?”
  • “When you want to go big, don’t think big, think narrow.”
  • One WIG per team at the same time. Everything else is in sustainment mode.
  • Make goals like this—“From x to y by when.”

3.  Engagement

  • “The biggest driver of engagement is when people feel like they’re winning.”
  • “Do the people who work for me feel like they’re playing a winnable game?”

4.  Accountability

  • Everyone needs to answer: “What are the things I do that have the biggest impact on the WIG?”
  • After sharing the scoreboard, allow people to determine what they need to do next. The people need to determine their own next moves, not the leader. The leader pulls this out of people.

Erin Meyer - contextErin Meyer—INSEAD

On The Culture Map communication is divided into Low vs. High Context:

  • Low = feel we don’t have the same context or relationship. We feel we need to explain things very simply and explicitly.
  • High = we assume we have a larger body of shared reference points. We feel communication is more implicit or nuanced.

Anglo-Saxon countries are typically low context.

Latin American are mid-low.

Asian countries are usually high context.

In low context we tend to nail things down in writing, where in high context we leave things more open to later interpretation.

“Context impacts communication. … We need to read both the messages ‘in the air’ as well as the explicitly stately messages.”

“In a high context culture, repeat things less, ask more questions, learn to ‘read the air.’”

 

Maxwell - 3 questionsJohn Maxwell—Author 

“Good leaders lift.”

“You have to find the people before you lead the people.”

“The one thing leaders have to get right—they must intentionally add value to people every day.”

 

Five things that intentionally adds value to people:

  1. Value people—“God values people I don’t know; He even value people I don’t like.” “Are we going to spend our lives connecting with people, or correcting them?”
  2. Think of ways to add value to people—“Intentional living is thinking upfront on how to help people.”
  3. Look for ways to add value to people.
  4. Do things that add value to people.
  5. Encourage others to add value to people.

If you attended the GLS, please share in the comments below something amazing / challenging / paradigm-busting that you learned. Let’s all keep on learning!

12 More Quotes From “Intentional Living”

Intentional LivingThere’s always tons of great content in a John Maxwell book, and Intentional Living was no exception. Here’s the second set of quotes from Dr. Maxwell from this book.

“Self-centeredness and fulfillment cannot peacefully coexist. They’re incompatible.”

“As you start your day, are you wondering what you will reap, or are you wondering what you will sow? Are you waiting for others to do something for you, or are you busy looking for something to do for others?”

“If you only place a small value upon yourself, rest assured that the rest of the world will not raise the price. And as a result of your own low self-esteem and poor sense of self-worth, you will fail to make a positive difference in the lives of others because you’ll think you have little to offer.”

“History tells us that in every age there comes a time when leaders must come forth to meet the needs of the hour. Therefore, there is no potential leader who does not have an opportunity to better mankind.”

“Once you taste significance, success will never again satisfy you.”

“I know without a doubt that every day since I started asking God to bring me people who desired significance, He has been sending them into my life so that we could make a difference together. And God continues to send them.”

“Almost everything you and I want is on the other side of fear. How do you handle that? … I don’t believe God gives me a dream to frustrate me. He gives me a dream to be fulfilled. … Fear is the most prevalent reason why people stop. Faith is what makes people start. Fear is the key that locks the door to the resources. Faith is the key that opens that door. When your dream of significance is right, it should increase your faith. … Faith should help you see the invisible and do the impossible.”

“There are no great men or women. There are just great challenges that ordinary people like you and me are willing to tackle. … Nothing separates passionate people from passive people like a call to step up.”

“Dreams often come one size too big so that we can grow into them.”

“Most people miss opportunities in life, not because the opportunity wasn’t there, but because they didn’t have a clue what it looked like when it arrived. They never took the time to figure out what they were looking for. It’s all about intentionality. You have to know what you’re looking for if you want to find it.”

“When partnering with people, don’t choose based on what they say they can do, or based on what they did once. Choose based on their regular behaviors. That’s what tells you what their values are. Too often our choices are made by what we could or think we should do rather than what we usually do. We are all human, so we should give everyone the benefit of the doubt. But we also need to be realistic.”

“Plans rarely stay the same, and are scrapped or adjusted as needed. Vision is only refined by failure. It’s important to remain stubborn about your vision, but flexible with your plan.”

To read the first set of Maxwell quotes from Intentional Living, please click here.

To read some of the quotes that John Maxwell used in his book, please click here.

To read my review of Intentional Living, please click here.

15 More Quotes From “Success 101”

Susscess 101One of the things I enjoy about John Maxwell’s books is the number of other resources he employs to make his point: motivational sources, historical sources, quotes, stories, personal examples, and more. Here are some of the quotes Dr. Maxwell shared in his Success 101 book.

“Everyone has his own specific vocation or mission in life. Everyone must carry out a concrete assignment that demands fulfillment. Therein he cannot be replaced, nor can his life be repeated. Thus everyone’s task is as unique as his specific opportunity to implement it.” —Viktor Frankl

“There is no man living who isn’t capable of doing more than he thinks he can do.” —Henry Ford

“A blind man’s world is bounded by the limits of his touch; an ignorant man’s world by the limits of his knowledge; a great man’s world by the limits of his vision.” —E. Paul Hovey

“Failure is really a matter of conceit. People don’t work hard because, in their conceit, they imagine they’ll succeed without ever making an effort. Most people believe that they’ll wake up someday and find themselves rich. Actually, they’ve got it half right, because eventually they do wake up.” —Thomas Edison

“Sir, I salute you not only as a great leader of men, but as an indomitable Christian gentleman who wouldn’t give up.” —General Charles Cornwallis, when he surrendered to George Washington

“I start where the last man left off.” —Thomas Edison

“Success is a little like wrestling a gorilla. You don’t quit when you’re tired—you quit when the gorilla is tired.” —Robert Strauss

“Every successful person finds that great success lies just beyond the point when they’re convinced their idea is not going to work.” —Napoleon Hill

“The greatest mistake one can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one.” —Elbert Hubbard

“He who makes no mistakes, makes no progress.” —Theodore Roosevelt

“Nobody whoever gave their best ever regretted it.” —George Halas

“If you do what you can, with what you have, where you are, then God won’t leave you where you are, and He will increase what you have.” —Bill Purvis

“Each time you decide to grow again, you realize you are starting at the bottom of another ladder.” —Ken Rosenthals

“Start doing what is necessary; then do what is possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.” —Francis of Assisi

“The only conquests which are permanent and leave no regrets are our conquests over ourselves.” —Napoleon Bonaparte

I also shared some quotes from John Maxwell himself in Success 101. You can read those by clicking here.

14 More Quotes From “Not Knowing Where”

Not Knowing WhereWhen I’m reading an Oswald Chambers book, I could practically highlight every line! Even when I restrain myself, I still find so much good material. I’ve already shared some quotes from Not Knowing Where, but I wanted to share a few more with you.

“In seeking the best we soon find that our enemy is our good things, not our bad. The things that keep us back from God’s best are not sin and imperfection, but the things that are right and good and noble from the natural standpoint.”

“Fanaticism is sticking true to my interpretation of my destiny instead of waiting for God to make it clear.”

“God will never have more power than He has now; if He could have, He would cease to be God.”

“Whenever God gives a vision to a saint, he puts the saint, as it were, in the shadow of His hand, and the saint’s duty is to be still and listen. Genesis 16 is an illustration of the danger of listening to good advice when it is dark instead of waiting for God to send the light (cf. Galatians 1:15-16). When God gives a vision and darkness follows, wait; God will bring you into accordance with the vision He has given if you will wait His time.”

“All God’s commands are enablings. Therefore it is a crime to be weak in His strength.” 

“God never hastens and He never tarries. He works His plans out in His own way, and we either lie like clogs on His hands or we assist Him by being as clay in the hands of the Potter.”

“Faith is not a bargain with God—I will trust You if you give me money, but not if You don’t. We have to trust in God whether He sends us money or not, whether He gives us health or not. We must have faith in God, not in His gifts.”

“The relation is to be that of a child; fling yourself clean over on to God and wash your hands of the consequences, and John 14:27―‘My peace I give unto you’―becomes true at once. The profound realization of God makes you too unspeakably peaceful to be capable of any self-interest.”

“Faith is not the means whereby we take God to ourselves for our select coterie; faith is the gift of God whereby He expresses His purposes through us.”

“Beware of insulting God by being a pious prude instead of a pure person.”

“It is the attitude of a spiritual prig to go about with a countenance that is a rebuke to others because you have the idea that they are shallower than you.”

“Friendship with God is faith in action in relation to God and to our fellow men.”

“The most amazing evidence of a man’s nature being changed is the way in which he sees God, to say ‘God led me here’; ‘God spoke to me’; is an everyday occurrence to him.”

“It is not that we prepare a palace for God, but that He comes into our mortal flesh and we do our ordinary work, in an ordinary setting, amongst ordinary people, as for Him.”

You can read my review of Not Knowing Where by clicking here.

You can read other quotes from this book by clicking here.

What Are You Looking At?

Blue eyeI read a fascinating article on some recent research on how eye movement can effect moral decision-making.

The researchers found that, “people asked to choose between two written moral statements tend to glance more often towards the option they favour.” And also that a decision can be influenced by asking for an answer immediately after the person looks at what you want them to choose.

The Bible has much to say about where our eyes are fixed, and how that impacts our life decisions―

I have a message from God in my heart concerning the sinfulness of the wicked: There is no fear of God before their eyes. (Psalm 36:1)

So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. (2 Corinthians 4:18)

With eyes full of adultery, they never stop sinning…. (2 Peter 2:14)

Your eye is the lamp of your body; when your eye (your conscience) is sound and fulfilling its office, your whole body is full of light; but when it is not sound and is not fulfilling its office, your body is full of darkness. (Luke 11:34, Amplified)

I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a young woman. (Job 31:1)

Keep your eyes straight ahead; ignore all sideshow distractions. (Proverbs 4:25, Message)

So … what are you looking at?

Links & Quotes

link quote

Some great reading from today.

“What satan put into the heads of our remote ancestors was the idea that they could ‘be like gods’—could set up on their own as if they had created themselves—be their own masters—invent some sort of happiness for themselves outside God, apart from God. And out of that hopeless attempt has come nearly all that we call human history—money, poverty, ambition, war, prostitution, classes, empires, slavery—the long terrible story of man trying to find something other than God which will make him happy.” —C.S. Lewis

“Leadership requires vision, and whence will vision come except from hours spent in the presence of God in humble and fervent prayer?” —A.W. Tozer

[INFOGRAPHIC] Christ’s activities during the Passion Week.

I am proud of my heritage in the Assemblies of God, which is celebrating its centennial this year. Read the history of the fellowship’s creation here and here.

[VIDEO] Logan finds out he’s going to be a big brother.

Astronomers may have found some dark matter at the center of our galaxy. That’s cool, but if we can accept this science by faith, why can’t we accept the biblical version by faith?

Research says forgiving yourself makes you healthier physically.

“When should a Christian, then, be like Jesus Christ? Is there a time when he may strip off his regimentals—when the warrior may unbuckle his armor, and become like other men? Oh! no; at all times, and in every place let the Christian be what he professes to be.” —Charles Spurgeon

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