Be Willing to Learn from Others

In Genesis 18 we see Moses was doing a good job but the observation of Jethro was similar to what some of us maybe heard at school ‘could do better’.

He was getting the job done. He was making progress but the wisdom of Jethro brought insight to Moses he may never have seen. Sometimes we can be so busy doing what we do, we never consider there could be a better way.

Learn from Moses how we can always be learning and looking for ways to improve our leadership effectiveness…

Listen. 

Listen to the right people. 

Listen to the right people who have a desire to see you succeed. 

Act on what you have heard. 

Become a leader who is willing to release others. 

Become a beyond you leader. 

Be a leader who sees something in others which they may not see in themselves. 

I am thankful for a couple called Kevin & Tina Hudson who did this for me. Now I am trying to do the same for others. That’s the heart behind my book ’19’ which should be published later in the year.

When it comes to building a church, a business, a life even, then we have to be willing to learn from others and make changes if necessary.

What would you add to this?

My 2015 Reader Survey

I really want to make my blog better and ensure that it stays relevant to the needs and interests of those reading it. To do that, I would love to know more about YOU. As a result, I have created my 2015 Reader Survey.

In will only take you a few minutes to fill out, so I hope you will. In doing so, you are helping me to help you, because then I can make the content more of what you want.

Thanks for your input, its important to me. The survey is easy to fill out and the results are completely anonymous. I can’t tell who said what and as I said before, it will only take five minutes of your time.

Let’s Talk Church

I read recently about a business owner who had made Tuesday a day for being honest about the health of his organisation. Anyone could make a comment on a Tuesday. 

That is a considered a dangerous idea by most but I kind of like it. The hope would be that people are only telling you something you probably already know.

Tuesday is meeting day for me, talking church, feedback, follow up, the future. It’s the day as a team we can get together, enjoy hanging out, have an honest conversation and give our focus to the vision of Xcel. 

We do this every week. We want the experience that people have at Xcel to be the best it can be. We are guardians of the vision and putting our focus on the achievement of it.

Let’s talk church. Let’s begin a conversation. Here’s a question for you ~ what’s your favourite thing about your church? Xcel or otherwise?

Leaders and Accountability

Leaders need accountability

One of the key things I have learned in 25 years of leadership is this: accountability is not just a good idea, it’s an absolute must.

I know I’m in danger of repeating myself but when you’re young you really don’t see the need for accountability. It’s such a boring sounding word. I don’t need ‘wisdom’ from someone older, I don’t want to be asked ‘how am I doing?’ No one can tell me anything and certainly not teach me anything. I will just learn from my own mistakes and so be it.

You can be right in your own mind if you want but that doesn’t make you a good leader. Don’t be so arrogant. It’s not an attractive quality. Leaders who don’t look for and welcome some form of accountability are setting themselves up to fail as leaders.

I am totally convinced that I would not have survived in leadership if it hadn’t been for the voice of reason, the voice of responsibility and the voice of right-thinking.

The voice of reason asks me the right questions.
Why are you doing this?
If you keep behaving like this where will it lead?
How can you do things differently to get a better result?
The big ‘what if’ type questions

The voice of responsibility keeps me safe within the right kind of boundaries.
To not listen to others who have gone before is a great display of ignorance. Ignorant people think they don’t need any boundaries which only leads to a whole bunch of issues that could have been avoided – lack of clarity, lack of engagement and focus, confusion, demotivation of the team, lack of identity, a breakdown in trust which all lead to a loss of respect for the leader. I think I’ve caused a lot of them over the last 25 years just because I chose not to be attentive to what my leaders were saying.

The voice of right-thinking helps me grow in wisdom.
It’s not about listening to every voice but considering what the right people have to say. Their mistakes are often their best wisdom. I know that works for me now as a leader when I’m thinking of what to pass on to others.

I am absolutely certain that these voices have impacted and benefited me in at least 3 areas of my leadership…
my behaviour – the type of leader I have become
my growth – the fact I am still in leadership all these years later
my aptitude – the skills I have as a leader

How about you? How has accountability influenced your leadership for the better?

Always Go For The Best Start Possible

It’s the early bird that catches the worm – apparantly. Probably true if you think about it.

A sprinter wants to get out of the blocks the fastest.
A business with a new product looks to gain an advantage from its competitors.
Cricketers want to get some early runs on the board.

Why? I reckon it gives them confidence…that they have a good start, a launchpad into the future that they really desire. To be leaders. To be winners. To stay ahead.

So it is for us as Christians. Always go for the best start possible.

This morning – while it was still dark – I crept downstairs, put the ipod on and worshipped God. When I get with God I find that He is always saying something. I just never normally take the time to listen. This week I am making the determined effort to take myself aside and listen.

Felt His kick this morning. Found myself praying for God to break me, to cleanse me. When I am not busy I can drift – getting with God reminded me of calling, purpose, destiny.

…He that has begun a good work in me will bring it to completion
…all things work together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose
…I will never leave you nor forsake you…
…meditate on it [the Word] day & night,so you may be careful to do everything in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful
…the steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord
…delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart

Read this morning too which reminded me again that He is all over IT – whatever IT might be for us

Luke 12:22-31 ‘…I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. Life is more than food, the body more than clothes…..your Father knows that you need them. BUT seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.’

So, get yourself the best start possible – take a moment before you step into the day and seek God. He knows what we need, He just wants to spend time with us. [Hope that encourages someone, like it did me]

Successful Coaching

To be a successful coach is less about you and more about the person you are coaching. That is extremely obvious. However, we naturally tend towards advice & fixing people and so need to be careful that if we say we are coaching, that that is where we stay.

For instance – we ask ‘why’ too many times which is more judgemental on our part rather than ‘what & how’ type questions. For example, ‘Why do you think you performed badly today? Why do you think you are no good at this?’ We have made a judgement there. That is our opinion and will make the other person defensive and probably antagonistic as the conversation continues.

A better way is to ask ‘What do you think of your performance today? On a scale of 1-10 how would you rate your performance?’ This is much more positive, allows the person to be honest and provides space for free flowing conversation from them and is more likely to lead them to think of solutions rather than being fixed.

When we listen we want our opinion to be heard and find it difficult to just observe & listen. We naturally want to interrupt, be funny, wander off, think ahead, formulate solutions, look for opportunities to talk about out experience. Great coaches just listen, observe & reflect and are optimistic that the answer will come from the speaker.

As a Life Coach – I am excited about having the opportunity of helping people and developing this skill, to hard wire it into who I am. If you would like to be coached by me then email me.