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A small step is easier than a leap. Once the first step is made, it is easier to continue down the right path to your desired destination. Leading Matters is about the journey. The stories he tells here are revolve around the ten elements that shaped his journey and how he relied on these traits in pivotal moments. The elements are relevant to any leader at any level. As he observes, the higher up you go the crises just get bigger and come faster. He begins by discussing the foundational elements: humility, authenticity, service, and empathy.
He then links them together with courage. Finally, he shows how collaboration, innovation, intellectual curiosity, storytelling, and creating change that lasts, helped him reach his goals. Arrogance sees only strengths, ignores our weaknesses, and overlooks the strengths of others, therefore leaving us vulnerable to catastrophic mistakes. Authenticity and Trust.
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Authenticity is essential to building trust. Leadership as Service. If you take a leadership role as a step toward a personal goal of gathering ever-greater titles, awards, and salaries, you will never see true success in that role. Recognize the service of others. As a leader it is easy to get wrapped up in big projects and ambitious initiatives, and, in the process, to forget the smaller, but no less important, individual acts of service taking place all around you.
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Much of that service supports and enables the widely celebrated success of others. Empathy should always be a factor in making decisions and setting goals. Empathy represents a crucial check on action—placing a deep understanding of and concern for the human condition next to data can lead to decisions that support the wellbeing of all. Courage, on the other hand, compels a leader to take that right action. While many people can discern what is right and true, acting on that discernment is more difficult. Even if risk-taking is against your nature, for the good of your organization, you must find the courage to practice it.
Collaboration and Teamwork.
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Certain ground rules circumvented interteam rivalries. First of all, I reminded everyone of our shared goal: we wanted to achieve something great. This led to my final ground rule: team members must be treated with the utmost respect. Innovation presents great opportunities for smart entrepreneurs, not the other way around. Intellectual Curiosity. Beyond personal enjoyment, though, this lifelong curiosity has served me well in my career. It has enabled me to engage in meaningful dialog about the world and its future. In challenging moments, great leaders show their true character.
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If you really want to inspire a team to action, best to engage them with a story. Once they become receptive—once they can imagine themselves as part of your vision—you can back your story up with facts and figures. When you turn that dream into a vivid story, you make it so attractive and so real that people will want to share it with you by joining your team. When it came time to respond to change, these companies moved quickly and efficiently, because every employee already understood the company identity and therefore knew how to respond without direct coaching.
In every profession and career, as we climb to higher leadership positions, the role of facts and data decreases. Any one of them has the potential to derail even the best of leaders. While they may creep up on us, we can see them coming and apply the proper antidote.
“SIRI: GIVE ME DIRECTIONS TO LAODICEA”
And even though these seven challenges never really go away, we can create some life habits that keep them at bay. Nieuwhof writes from a been-there-done-that Christian perspective about the issues as they manifest themselves in our lives and follows up each one with a chapter on how to combat it. These issues affect everyone and some you'll find hit close to home. Cynicism Disappointment and frustration often end in cynicism. Ask them and they know all about it. It may get us in the door, but character is what determines how far we go. Technology just makes it worse.
Eliminate hurry from your life.
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And this comment could pull any of us up short:. For me, the sense that a conversation is going nowhere always carries with it an underpinning of judgment and even arrogance on my part. Which, of course, should drive me right back to my knees in confession. Irrelevance Irrelevance happens when what you do no longer connects to the culture and the people around you.
That gap is a factor of how fast things change relative to you. Change staves off irrelevance. Get radical about change. Surround yourself with younger people. Seek change to transform you. Burnout Burnout saps the meaning and wonder out of life. Signs of burnout include among other things: your passion fades, you no longer feel your highs and lows, little things make you disproportionately emotional, everybody drains you, nothing satisfies you, and your productivity drops. Getting out of this state begins by admitting it and then figuring out how to live today so you will thrive tomorrow.
What does that look like? Nieuwhof recommends some concrete steps you can take to bring you back from burnout. Go deep enough and take enough time to recover so that you begin to feel gratitude for the process. Emptiness Ironically, success often makes you feel empty. Humility will win you what pride never will: the affection of others.
Other people naturally gravitate toward people who live for a cause beyond themselves. The practical advice found here will benefit anyone on their leadership journey. It does not invalidate everything else of its type, rather it is designed to be simpler and thereby memorable and actionable on issues that really matter for people in the work environment. And it is quite straightforward for both accessing yourself and others you work with. Pioneers value possibilities and they spark energy and imagination. Drivers value challenge and they generate momentum. Integrators value connection and they draw teams together.
Guardians value stability and they bring order and rigor. The authors naturally go into detail on each of these types and give an example of a well-known person that fits that type. They also delve into difference between the types as they relate to stress Pioneers are the least stressed. The trick of course, is to use this knowledge to modify you own behavior.
Then you can determine how you might flex your own style to better match the preferences of those around you. For example, too many constraints can completely shut a Pioneer down, while a Guardian may withdraw in an environment that feels too chaotic.
Thriving Churches in the Twenty-First Century: 10 Life-Giving Systems for Vibrant Ministry
Knowing these trigger points can help you as a leader to give people more of what they need to excel and less of what will turn them off. I might want to be direct with others but I have learned that I am more productive when I am diplomatic. But being that that is my natural tendency, I probably prefer when people are direct and concise with me. That fact would affect my working style profile.
They prefer having all of the answers and enjoy zooming into every detail. They grew up in a different time and may have adopted a more novelty-seeking and relationship—focused orientation.
Without it we tend to be reactive, disengaged, an unimaginative. The more conscious we are, the faster we adapt, and the higher performing we become. Bob Rosen and Emma-Kate Swann wrote Conscious: The Power of Awareness in Business and Life , because they believe that becoming more conscious is critical in our increasingly disruptive and accelerating world. Driven by the need to be right, those obsessed with being smart tend to hoard knowledge, externalize blame, and mismanage relationships and risks.
This sabotages our ability to thrive in a constantly changing world. As a result, we stay stuck, biased, and reactive. Staying small and never stepping up is sure to lead to regrets and will undermine your highest potential. Harness the power of introspection by getting to know who you are, where you come from, and why you act the way you do. Get curious and adaptive: deal with complexity and paradox by learning how to expand your mind, leverage your relationships and networks, and overcome unconscious biases. Become more honest and intentional in leadership and life, overcoming the pitfalls of being too safe and cautious while embracing reality.