Expectations and enthusiasm are (rightly) running high, but leading well isn’t always as simple as it seems. How do you do it well?
(Footnote: these posts aren’t just for people in a formal, present-tense leadership position. Reflecting about where you are in your leadership journey is an important part of improving and having more to give).
Over the next month or so, I’ll be exploring that question in my next series of posts. I’d love to hear your feedback and comments along the way.
In this first post, we ask the question, ‘What kind of leader will you be?’ Everyone wants to lead well, but intentionally considering where you are – and, who you want to be – will help you follow through as exams and ‘life’ threaten to push your role as a leader to the back burner.
In my experience, every leader takes on one (or more) of these roles.
- the no-show. These leaders signs up with good intentions, but, at some point, stop showing up to events and responding to emails. They are leaders only in theory.
- the wallflower. Unlike the no-show, these leaders come out to many club activities and answers communications from the other leaders. However, they rarely come up with their own ideas or provide leadership.
- the misfit. These leaders are faithful, active participants in the campus group. At the same time, they don’t ‘fit in’ among the other leaders. The reasons may vary – coming from a different faith tradition, having a personality that doesn’t ‘gel’, feeling that their ideas aren’t valued, not agreeing with key aspects of the group’s vision, or, being asked to serve in a way that doesn’t fit their gifting. If this dynamic doesn’t change, they can become disruptive, or, more like the no-show or wallflower.
- the savior. These are the take-charge types, full of ideas and motivation. They’re natural ‘presidents’ and talented, go-to people. At the same time, they may not listen well or help others play the roles God has called them to. As a result, their groups become overly dependent on them and reflect their interests rather than that of the entire leadership team. When they move on, those that follow aren’t prepared, or, feel that they can’t live up to ‘the savior’ that went before them.
- the biblical leader. Biblical leaders know the role that God has called them to play on the leadership team, and, they exercise that role with a blend of confidence and humility. They come in a million different ‘flavors’ – they may be ‘presidents’ or more suited to a supportive role – but, they’re all proactive yet recognize they’re part of a larger team.
Since you’ve lived with yourself for a while now(!), you probably know where your tendencies lie. Your new leadership team may be just forming, but where do you think you’ll naturally ‘land’ among the team if you just let things unfold?
Take a few moments and reflect, praying through where you are and where you’d like to be.
In my next post, I’ll offer a few key thoughts on each leadership type that may help you move forward.