It seems silly, maybe even snooty, in this day and age, to talk about a home “library,” but even the least enthusiastic readers have one. I notice them in every home I visit. Sometimes the home library is a set of built-in shelves framed around the family television. Other times, it is an IKEA expedit cube full of Llama Llama and Peppa the Pig. Even in homes where the owner would say, “I am not much of a reader,” they have a library, because they have a depository of books.
Building a recruiting culture is foundational to leadership pipeline because it proactively cultivates development within the church. You have probably heard me say before that leadership development is both poetry and plumbing. We will start with the poetry that provides the “why” and quickly move into the plumbing that provides the “what, where, and how.”
Although some are born with a natural bent toward leadership, it can be learned. Regardless of where you find yourself, effective and purposeful leadership requires each of us to develop our skills and deepen our knowledge. Sometimes, as leaders, we can allow the clutter in our lives to overshadow the necessity of living close to God. Clutter can be anything from doing what’s good but not best, saying yes when no was necessary, working when rest was needed, or choosing busyness that seems productive when God wanted stillness.
It’s possible to fake emotional intelligence. Similar to knockoffs of luxury watches or handbags, there are emotions and actions that look like the real thing but really aren’t. With the best of intentions, I’ve seen smart leaders charge into sensitive interactions armed with what they believed was a combination of deep empathy, attuned listening, and self-awareness but was, in fact, a way to serve their own emotional needs. It’s important to learn to spot these forgeries, especially if you’re the forger.
Plenty of research has documented manipulative misuses of emotional intelligence — the intentionally subtle regulating of one’s emotions to engineer responses from others that might not be in their best interest. Given that most people aren’t sociopaths, in my experience, the more common misuses of emotional intelligence are subconscious. To safeguard against inadvertently falling prey to them, we need deeper levels of self-examination. Here are three of the more common counterfeits I’ve seen snare well-intended leaders.
Much has been written in the past decade on leadership skills. The body of literature on the topic is massive and growing. I certainly have little to add in a brief blog post.
It is for that reason I focus specifically on the relational skills of great church leaders. Admittedly, my approach is both anecdotal and subjective. But I have been in the ministry of working with church leaders for thirty years. I think my cursory overview would be supported by more thorough research.
Most pastors and church leaders have never received formal training in relational skills.
Video of the Week: 3 Ways Your Spouse Can Make You a Better Leader