The Principles and Processes of Leadership
Good leaders are made, not born. If you have the desire and willpower, you can become an effective leader. While some people seem to be born with strong leadership abilities, it is a skill that anyone can learn; leadership is a collection of skills that are learned and improved upon. Everyone has the potential to lead and influence, but it requires perseverance. Good leadership is also about what’s going on in leaders’ hearts, as well as the relationships that you create and foster—both inside and outside your ministry. Exposure to basic leadership principles, the dynamics of leadership, and the processes of leadership will be introduced in this class. These take time to master based upon experience, people skills, discipline, vision, momentum, and timing; the learning process is ongoing, and cannot be learned overnight. This class, and the subsequent classes over the next two years, will help you develop these skills.
From time to time, good leaders inspire their team to move in directions they would not otherwise have been willing to go; this kind of risk taking will draw on a leader’s courage, ability to lead, and can challenge their team to accomplish far beyond what they believed was possible. If you’re leading a group of people in ministry, you must learn how to motivate others. If you concentrate on understanding what motivates others, you’ll be on the right track for a positive and enlightening experience for all involved. We all have different management styles which affects the way we work with people and the relationship that we develop with them. Different people can have quite different motivators; therefore, when attempting to help motivate people, it’s important to identify what motivates each of them. Motivating others is at the heart of leadership and organizational success; when we learn to motivate others effectively, we can a momentum for a outcome that far surpasses our expectations.
This class introduces the principles and practice of servant leadership. What is a servant leader? Why would we choose to be servant leaders? How does the servant leader function in the life of the church and in the world to which Christ sends us? Study the example that Jesus set as a servant leader, and how he wants us to lead our lives modeled after him.
The class is founded on the principles of John Maxwell’s book, The 360 Degree Leader. This class will show you how to overcome leadership challenges, and teach you the skills you need to become a 360° leader. 360° Leadership gives you the tools to exercise influence in all directions—up (to the boss), across (among your peers), and down (to those you lead). The good news is that your influence is greater than you know! You don’t have to be the main leader, asserts Maxwell, to make significant impact in your organization. Good leaders are not only capable of leading their followers but are also adept at leading their superiors and their peers. 360° leaders can lead effectively, regardless of their position in an organization. By applying Maxwell’s principles, you will expand your influence and ultimately be a more valuable team member.
Leading Through Tough Times
Being an effective leader is all about being able to rise to the occasion in the midst of the most difficult of times. It’s one thing for someone to lead when things are going smoothly and problems are manageable; it’s another matter, however, when things aren’t going so well. Change and uncertainty challenge even the best leaders. Experienced leaders don’t get discouraged in bad times; rather, they see difficult times as an opportunity to go in and fix, repair, adjust, and do all the things they couldn’t get to in the euphoria of successful times. They become more action-oriented. However, they don’t just jump in; they thoughtfully plan a strategy for what they need to do to in order to get through the challenge of the times and better prepare for the new future. In this class, you will learn how your response and behavior has a significant and lasting impact on those you lead, and how you can positively lead your ministry through times of uncertainty with a positive impact.
Proverbs: Principles in Life and Leadership
The main purpose of the book of Proverbs is to teach wisdom to God’s people. Proverbs are short clever explanations, which are easy to remember; they contain truisms. They deal with life, principles, good judgment, and perception. In Proverbs, King Solomon speaks of the characteristics of a good leader: wisdom, integrity, love, the ability to seek good advisers, self control, awareness of influence, the absence of the need for public approval, moderation, and submission to God. The principles in Proverbs regarding leaders applies to many areas of our life – home, church, government, and work. The attitudes and wisdom that made a good King in 1000 B.C., also make a good 21st century leader. Good leaders are more concerned about pleasing God than their popularity with others. This class will show you how to apply the principles from Proverbs to lead a Godly life and lead with wisdom.
Being a Person of Influence
Each of us is influenced by others; if your life in any way connects with other people, you are an influencer. Whether through motivating, mentoring, encouraging, or simply communicating, we can make a difference in the lives of others. Influence can be either positive or negative, depending on how one chooses to use it. Whatever your ministry or aspiration, you can increase your impact on others by becoming a person of influence. A person’s influence does not develop overnight, but rather through a progression of four stages: modeling, motivating, mentoring, and multiplying. Influence can be acquired, but it only grows in increments. No matter where you stand on the stairway of influence, there are learn-able qualities to help you climb to the next step; in this class you will learn simple, insightful ways to interact more positively with others.
Building and Keeping Teams
Belonging to a team, in the broadest sense, is a result of feeling part of something larger than yourself. In a team-oriented environment, you contribute to the overall success of the organization. Team members want to feel as if they are part of something bigger than themselves. They need to understand where their team mission falls in the bigger organizational scheme, the overall leadership vision. Team commitment comes from team members knowing the expected outcomes and where the outcomes fit in the whole organization’s strategic plan. Team members need to perceive their service as valuable. Having talented people on your team is essential, but building a close knit and productive team is even more so. Each ministry is different, so there is no ‘one size fits all’ solution for how to do this, however, keeping your team together, focused, and motivated is probably the single most important activity you as leader can devote your time to. In this course, you will learn essential ideas for building and keeping an exceptional and productive team.
As leaders, it is our job to recruit, equip, empower, and celebrate our volunteers and help them to be all God wants them to be, so that our church can do all God wants it to do to impact our community and world. Volunteering isn’t a one-sided experience, with the volunteer just serving the church. Volunteers also have expectations about their experience and about the impact they hope to make. As leaders in ministry, part of our responsibility is engaging, motivating, and developing volunteers. This class will provide you with strategies to create a positive volunteer experience and help volunteers serve to their full potential.
Zealous faith can have a dangerous, dark side. While recent calls for radical Christians have challenged many to be more passionate about their faith, the down side can be a budding arrogance and self-righteousness that ‘accidentally’ sneaks into our outlook. In Accidental Pharisees, bestselling author Larry Osborne diagnoses nine of the most common traps that can ensnare Christians on the road to a deeper life of faith. Rejecting attempts to turn the call to follow Christ into a new form of legalism, he shows readers how to avoid the temptations of pride, exclusivity, legalism, and hypocrisy, Larry reminds us that attempts to fan the flames of full-on discipleship and call people to Christ-likeness should be rooted in love and humility. This class will study Larry’s book and underlying principles to avoid becoming an “Accidental Pharisee,” and will guide you onto a road of a deeper life of faith without the danger of adding activities onto the teachings of Jesus that “prove” our commitment to God.