Challenges are often overwhelming. The various challenges leaders face often distract and/or discourage. During these times, it is important to ask, “Will we finish well?”
Finishing well requires a few simple steps.
Determine the priorities. Discouragement leads to quitting. We cannot allow this to happen. Know what is worth dying for and give ourselves to it.
Work hard. The reason given as the secret to success for anyone in leadership is a simple, but powerful truth. They work hard.
Keep your eye on the goal. Challenges bring distractions. Peter encouraged Christians facing persecution to keep their focus.
How well we finish is just as important as how we begin.
How often do we need an answer, yet do not know how to get it?
John Maxwell says, “You can’t find the right answer if you are asking the wrong question.”
What will help?
1) Think before speaking.
2) Questions must be clear and direct.
3) Be genuine.
4) Do not assume anything.
5) Learn what “not” to ask.
There are answers, but we must learn to ask the right questions to get the answers.
Is the beginning better than the end?
The reputation of a leader is often measured by success––goals achieved. However, a leader has an important task before achieving success.
What must be done to create buy-in? How can excitement for the goal be created? Will people work the plan?
The answers unfold in the beginning. To earn great victories, there needs to be a great beginning.
Believe in the plan.
Paint the picture and set it before others.
Examine every possible detail.
Pursue the course with enthusiasm.
Is the beginning better than the end? If we start correctly, yes!
Jesus spoke of a wise man and a foolish man. The difference between the two was the foundation upon which they built.
When the bedrock of our leadership is based on spiritual qualities and characteristics, people have a solid foundation to follow.
We must know who we are following. When we follow the leadership of Christ, we move in the right direction.
We must develop consistency between our words and actions. More than one leader has lost credibility because their actions contradicted their words.
The eternal success of our leadership is determined by the foundation upon which we build and help others stand upon.
This phrase originated with the WWII patriotic song Coming in on a Wing and a Prayer by Harold Adamson and Jimmie McHugh (1942). The song tells of a damaged warplane barely able to limp back to base.
Prayer is a vital part of our spiritual leadership, but our approach to leadership cannot succeed by barely limping along.
Our leadership is about the hope Jesus provided at the cross. We have prepared ourselves through trust and obedience to a gracious God who saved us from sin.
When we understand our leadership is focused on this kind of hope, we are not leading by a wing and a prayer. We are leading by faith!
Dealing with failure has never been easy. How we deal with it makes a powerful statement to the development of our leadership.
Building on the suggestions from yesterday, consider the following.
Do not hesitate to act. Hesitation comes with a high price. Waiting to act creates a perception of apathy.
Learn from failure. Study the strengths and weaknesses of the present circumstances. Determine and implement needed changes to overcome and prevent the same mistakes.
Make necessary adjustments to move beyond failure to build confidence in others toward leadership. Work to build a series of successful events or programs to reassure the strength of the leadership.
Who or what determines failure? Why is failure seen as negative? How can leaders deal with failure in ways to improve and benefit their leadership?
Consider a couple steps:
First, recognize failure is inevitable. No matter who you are or where you are, failure takes place.
Second, acknowledge and take responsibility. Do not ignore, deny, or cast blame when failure occurs.
Third, failure is not fatal. Winston Churchill is credited with saying, “Success is not final, failure is not fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts.”