Ask Questions

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Leadership involves asking questions. Developing your leadership character is helped by asking good questions.

I think the first question I asked was this, ‘what am I doing?’ I still ask that question from time to time.

Here is one thing I have learned on my leadership journey: Asking the right people the right questions at the right time has the ability to help me become the right kind of leader.

Questions can help you learn.
Questions can scratch beneath the surface.
Questions are moments of genuine enquiry not just nosiness.
Questions can bring clarity.
Questions can grow you
Questions have answers that we may not always want to hear but should listen and learn from anyway.

You should always have a question. If you are listening to someone teach, get a question. You may not always get the chance to ask it but get one regardless.

Here are 5 general questions for a leader to start you off….
What are the characteristics you look for in a leader?
What’s the biggest thing you have learned about leadership?
Why do some leaders fail?
What do you do to keep growing as a leader?
What do you consider are the most important decisions you make as a leader?

If you could sit for a while with a leader who you want to learn from, what question would you ask?

Lean In, Back Off…Just Don’t Do Nothing!

Cannot get this simple thought out of my head.

After reading Tribes by Seth Godin I cannot shake his assertion that leaders must either LEAN IN or BACK OFF. The one thing they CHOOSE to not do is NOTHING!

This is certainly a challenge to all of us – not just those of us in leadership positions. We all have the potential to influence our surroundings. The change comes by us doing something intentional not nothing.

QUESTION: What to LEAN IN to?
I have many ambitions – to achieve them I need to LEAN IN more. Become more purposeful in my actions. Make sure I do at least one thing each day that relates to the change I want to see – for me these include
Spending time with my wife
Investing time with my children
Growing people
Coaching business
Development of leadership training initiatives
Reading, writing

QUESTION: What to BACK OFF from?
To be successful means for every addition something has to give way.
Late nights
Removing some distractions
Laziness, procrastination and the like
Some specific stuff…

The big thing is to not do nothing. The future is full of potential which will be achieved by LEANING IN tothe right stuff, BACKING OFF the wrong stuff and getting on with doing all the things you must do. Simple!

[What do you LEAN IN to?]
[What must you BACK OFF from?]

What Makes A Leader?

Asked this question at XTR last Thursday as it is a great starting point for anyone who wants to understand the idea of leadership.

What Makes A Leader?

I’ll leave this post empty…would love to just hear your ideas

If you don’t have an opinion as to what you think makes a leader then you have nothing to aim for. You have nothing to measure yourself against, you have no identified areas that need improvement. All great leaders are always endeavouring to improve themselves.

Let’s make a list, leave some thoughts & create a leadership journey for ourselves and others.

Leadership Challenges: Followers

Prompted to write this after the leadership session on Sunday morning when I asked a simple question of those that were there…

What are the challenges that leaders face?

A seemingly innocuous question but one that opened up a myriad of thoughts. Some people got quite emotive about them too. The ensuing discussion was great. Would love to know what you think they are?

Here’s what I’ve learnt along the way about leadership and followers…

If you don’t have any you are NOT a leader (actually I think that goes to Maxwell)
When you have some keeping them is HARD WORK.
Pray.
Are ‘followers’ the toughest challenge a leader faces?
You cannot keep all of them happy all of the time. That’s what you need a team for.
If you genuinely care for them and believe the best of them…they will keep following you.
Patience is not just a virtue, it’s a must!
Don’t teach based on your frustrations with those who are following you. Teach based on what you believe God is saying to you all at the current time.
Without followers you are limited to what you can achieve. Challenge them, ask more of them than they can give, help them understand the cause, paint a picture of the future with them in it.
Pray.
Thank God for them…all the time.
Listen to them but don’t be led by them. Majority rule is not always best. If God has said so then God’s way is best!

Explain the why more than the what.

Would love you input on this topic – any wisdom out there?
What do you reckon? What are some of the leadership challenges?
If you have people behind you…what are the challenges followers bring and what have you learnt along the way?

[By the way…this is the 300th post. How do you think I’m doing?]