great-leaders_pan_18980When you look deep into any successful organization or church, there is an overwhelming theme that all of them have and it is this: Good Leadership!

The reality is that not all leaders are good leaders. In fact, some who hold leadership positions are really not that great at all.

If you look at the successful leaders, there are some key values that they hold that has gotten them to this point.

You see, success in leadership does not just happen. It takes time. It takes work, and it takes some key values or elements in the leader for the organization to be successful.

So, what are these values? Here are a few values of successful leaders:

1. Great Leaders Work Harder

There is a myth that the higher you rise in your organization, the easier the work load. This is a myth. Now, your work might change a bit, but the higher you go, the more responsibility you will have, and the harder you must work in order to keep your organization running smoothly.

I tell those that I lead that we should be working harder than anyone else. The volunteers should look at us as leaders and notice how hard we work.

2. Great Leaders Care For Those That They Lead

Let me write directly to those who lead for a moment. You should be creating a culture within your organization where people love to work for you, because they feel loved and well taken care of.

Too often, the people within our organizations do not feel this way. They do not feel that they are paid well, cared about, or even noticed. Great leaders create great organizations with a great culture.

When you begin building a team that you are responsible for, a large portion of a leader’s responsibility is to care for those underneath them. Do not create a culture where you only give orders without showing care and concern.

3. Great Leaders Model What They Expect

Have you ever worked for someone who expects something that they do not even do themselves?

We all have at some point, and it is frustrating. Now, if you are in this boat, keep following your leader. This is not a license to go against his/her leadership 🙂

But if there is one thing in common of successful leaders, it is this: They have modeled what they expect.

Whatever you expect, make sure you are doing.

4. Great Leaders Make Tough Decisions

Part of leadership is making difficult decisions at times.

If you do not like or want to make difficult decisions, stay away from leadership.

These decisions come because sometimes leaders have to say “no” to good things in order to say “yes” to better things.

Leaders are willing to say “no” to people in order to take the organization further faster.

5. Great Leaders Take Risks

I love watching leaders step out of their comfort zone and live by faith.

Great leaders did not get their without some risk involved.

Do not expect to become a great leader if you are only willing to play it safe.

Be confident in yourself and He who called you. Be passionate and understand your mission. If the mission requires a risk, take it.

6. Great Leaders Take Their Character Seriously

Carey Nieuwhof says it this way: Leaders should work harder on their character than their competency.

All successful leaders build their character and take this seriously, because one bad decision can take them down in a hurry.

Great leaders understand that your character will take you further than your competency.

7. Great Leaders Do Not Make Excuses

The best leaders do not sit in a room and think of excuses, but rather they think of potential and ideas.

Great leaders do not cut corners and think of the easiest way out. They think of the biggest way out which sometimes is also the hardest.

The difference is that great leaders do not think of the difficulty or the problems that could come, but they look at the potential and capacity of the organization.

Do not make excuses, make progress.

8. Great Leaders Invest In Themselves

This  is the one that I have learned lately more than anything else. The best leaders take time to invest in themselves.

I used to think leadership was all about investing in others, but now I realize that as I get better, the people within my organization gets better.

The more that I invest in myself, the higher the ceiling of potential within those that I lead gets.

9. Great Leaders Seek and Listen To Feedback

Have you ever been around a “know it all” leader who does not listen to feedback or take advice?

The best leaders seek feedback about their leadership and their organization. They not only listen to it, but they allow it to impact their decisions in the future.

10. Great Leaders Own Their Organization

Great leaders own their organization when things are great, but also when things are bad.

Some leaders own their organization when things are good, but when things get bad, they can blame someone else in a hurry.

The best leaders own the success, but they also own the failure of their organization.

Own it. Do not blame or point fingers.

Taking responsibility even when something is not your fault does not cause people to blame you, but rather it causes people to trust you.

Craig Groeschel puts it this way: people want to follow a leader who is real, not one who is always right.

So be real. Admit mistakes, and own your organization in the success, but also the struggle of your organization.

What value would you add to this list?

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