Jon Hauser: What every leader must do
I try to limit the items I obsess over. I think that is wise and increases the potential for a more rewarding, higher impact life. It is rarely helpful to major on the minor or be consumed with the common. One of satan's greatest tactics to limit our positive impact is to distract us with the ordinary while missing out on the extraordinary.
One of the items I obsess over is leadership; both personally and in the organization I lead, Prairie Heights Community Church in West Fargo. When my wife, Teri, and I started Prairie Heights in our living room in 2000, one of our goals was that Prairie Heights would someday be the premier organization in this region for training leaders.
I recently spent time asking myself, "What should every leader do?" I came up with four activities and four associated evaluation questions.
• Question 1: Where have I gotten better? A leader is committed to continual growth, realizing God is not finished with them yet. This is not accidental growth, but areas a leader intentionally identifies they must improve. How do I discover these areas? Be vulnerable and ask another leader, your spouse, your children, a co-worker or someone who reports to you. Trust me, they know areas you need to improve. If they are not willing to honestly share with you, they do not trust you or believe that you are committed to growth. So, that gives you an area where you need to get better!
• Question 2: Who have I helped get better? A leader connects with people and has a desire to serve and improve the lives of others. They do not get better simply to selfishly enjoy the "benefits." Leaders do not wish to cross the finish line alone. They desire to cross the line while celebrating with those who journeyed with them. A leader wants to get better in order to help others get better.
• Question 3: What has gotten better under my leadership? Within your areas of responsibility at home, work, church or other teams you are a part of, what has gotten better? Leaders see beyond average and shoot for excellence. You may be responsible for putting napkins into the dispensers at a restaurant. How is that activity done better when you complete it? Maybe you spend extra time and wipe the dispensers clean. The idea is you can identify specific outcomes, processes or problems that have gotten better through your effort.
• Question 4: Who have I recruited, trained and empowered as a leader? Leaders look for gifts, strengths and potential in others and invite them to participate. They have an enthusiasm and a vision that attracts others. And they learn how to train and empower others to reach their potential. They celebrate when someone completes an activity better than they do. Leadership isn't a competition.
I encourage you to answer these four questions every three months. The greatest need in the world today is Godly effective leaders. Let's be a part of the solution!
God bless you. See you next Sunday!