Throughout my history both in leadership positions in the business world and lead volunteer positions in ministry, I have come across 3 foundational defining words for leadership that I would like to share today.
Integrity – The quality of being honest and having strong moral principles. Being whole and undivided.
Integrity starts from the top; which is your leadership, it will flow through everything you do. Show your integrity, then demand it in the character of those you choose to surround yourself with. Do not allow any room for duplicity. The bible says in Proverbs 11:3, The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity of thought, speech, and action.
Points on integrity:
1. Improve your communication skills. Always keep the people that are closest to you involved in knowing the details of your life.
2. Follow through on your promises. If you say you are going to do something, do it no matter how big or small it may seem to you.
3. Holding yourself to a higher standard. Opportunity will present itself for you to compromise your integrity; never give in.
4. Be the front line. Don’t ever ask anyone to do anything that you would not also do, or that you would not do first.
Influence – The capacity to have an effect on ones character, development, or behavior.
The key to successful leadership today is influence, not authority. Jesus referred to us in the book of Matthew as the light of the world. Do not underestimate your God given influence. True people of influence are humble people because they know that it came from God, not from anything that they did on their own. Be humble by remembering where your influence is from and your influence will expand.
Points on influence:
1. Start a real conversation. Get past the initial automatic responses with people, get deep into some real conversational topics.
2. Let love be your confidence and motivation. When you are uncomfortable or don’t want to speak to someone, remember love first.
3. Follow the example that Jesus set. Read about the life of Jesus in Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Jesus’ influence is second to none.
4. Stay humble. Always give glory to God for your level of influence; remember that is it never because of what you have done.
5. Be the highlight of someone else’s day. Being a person of influence at a high level means that it isn’t about you, it is about those around you.
Identity – The fact of being who or what a person or thing is.
You will never influence the world by trying to be like it. What you know about you is what is most important. Identity is the number one place that the devil will attack you. If your identity is in your performance, then you are missing the call of God. When identity is not held in Christ, ministry and work both become a burden. The only way to know who we truly are is from the word of God.
Points on identity:
1. Lead your life to where you want it to go, don’t just follow the flow of what happens randomly. (Ask God for a vision for your future.)
2. Write down your long term dreams; make sure that you’re life journey is getting your closer to them, not further.
3. Invest in yourself. Read, pray, get mentors, make time for hobbies. It starts with you.
4. Invest in others. Make time to intentionally invest in those closet to you.
5. Do God and I view my identity the same way? Make sure that you line up with His will, not yours.