DUCKS TO MONKEYS

Reposting from Dan Rockwell on LEADERSHIP FREAK

It takes largeness of spirit to value ducks when you’re a monkey. Foolish monkeys complain about ducks. Wise monkeys maximize their potential.

Persistent disapproval de-energizes ducks.

Learn how to approve of ducks even while working to improve their quacking. But remember, a duck in a monkey mask will always waddle and quack.

Approve of those you hope will improve. Approval energizes the spirit and inspires bold quacking.

Points of celebration even with poor quackers:

  1. Celebrate any acknowledgement that quacking is below the bar. Excuses end progress. Pour into ducks if they recognize they quack poorly.
  2. Celebrate their potential for improved quacking. Untapped strength and unleveraged talent is latent potential. But don’t waste time trying to turn quacking ducks into squealing monkeys.
  3. Celebrate their passion and commitment to improve.
  4. Celebrate improved quacking.

Reassign or remove poor quackers if one of the above four qualities is missing.

Gratitude finds things to approve.

It takes skill to approve of ducks while working to improve their waddling and quacking. One key is ‘waddling with’ rather than ‘squealing aloof’.

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LEADERS WHO CARE

BY STEVE DUNN

One of the quality leadership marks in ministry is the belief of those that are being led are being lead by a leader who cares for them.  Dan Reiland has shared a post that I want to pass along to you that handles this with clarity.

THE WINNING COMBINATION FOR ANY LEADER

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Have you experienced a teacher or professor who was brilliant in their subject, but didn’t seem to care about you as their student?

Have you encountered a doctor or nurse who seemed to be a genuinely caring person, but only average in their skills?

This is a common experience and can be true in anyone from a plumber to a therapist.

But when you find someone who is both competent and cares, that is an extremely valuable person.

The same is true for leaders.

When a leader is highly competent and clearly demonstrates that he or she sincerely cares, that is always a winning combination.

I’ve met pastors who are brilliant Bible teachers, but somewhat distant from the people. I’ve also met warm and loving pastors who are only average in their communication skills.

Here’s an intriguing question. Which do you think is more important? Competence or Caring?

The quick answer might be, “It depends.”  Perhaps you’d say: “I want the pilot of my next flight to be competent; I don’t care if he’s aloof and distant. I don’t need him to hold my hand, I need him to land the plane.” Fair enough.

But there are far more situations where I think you will say caring matters. For example, I want my dentist to be really good, and I want him to care. I don’t want some guy with a drill in his hand with zero compassion!

You don’t want the teacher of your 1st grader to be brilliant in early childhood education, and yet be cold or even harsh toward your child.

As a leader, I don’t think we have to settle for either/or, and I know the people who follow you don’t have to settle.

Candidly, people have choices. They will search until they find a leader, doctor, teacher, coach, boss etc., who is both caring and competent.

Two Truths to Help You Move Forward:

1) Caring isn’t automatic.

Not everyone cares. We agree on that.

You can’t learn to care. It’s not a skill.

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ENCOURAGEMENT IS 51% OF LEADERSHIP

­IMG_8766Years ago while attending leadership conferences in Anderson IN conducted by Injoy Ministries and John Maxwell, I was introduced to Dan Reiland.  I recently began subscribing to his blog.  Here is a recent post you will find helpful as a leader. – Steve

Encouragement provides the emotional fuel that enables people to hold longer, reach farther and dig deeper than previously believed possible. John Maxwell says that encouragement is 51% of leadership. I believe that. As a leader, your role is to give people hope, to build them up and help them believe in themselves in a greater measure than they have before. In short, to live a better life.

Do others see you as an encourager?

Encouragement isn’t something that you do from a checklist of “things to do today.” It’s a way of life for a leader. Encouragement is not a soft expression from a weak leader. The toughest of good leaders understand that it’s something core to sustained influence. Essentially, sincere encouragement comes from a deep love and belief in people, and a desire to see them experience life in a better way.

Encouragement

Encouragers naturally draw people to them.

Let me raise the bar on the definition for encouragement. As a leader in a local church, if you are an encourager, people will naturally migrate to you. When they see you, they smile and instinctively walk toward you. This is not about a charismatic personality. It doesn’t matter if five people seek you out or fifty-five people seek you out. The point is that people will literally move to you because you cause their life to be a little brighter. I’m not talking about people who want permission for something, an extension cord or keys to the storage area, but people who just want to be around you!

Let’s be honest, life is wonderful but it’s difficult. True? Do you have any financial challenges? How’s your health? Do you have kids? Life is good, but it has plenty of challenges. Life will press people down, so anyone who consistently lifts people up (sincerely) gains the ability to influence—meaning to lead!

If you are a leader in a local church and people don’t migrate to you, there is a reason. You need to discover what it is. Ask someone you trust, who loves you, and will tell the truth. For now, start encouraging others. Do it sincerely and often.

Encouragers communicate with a positive bias.

John Maxwell is the most consistently positive person I know. He has high faith in people and sees life for its potential over its problems. He’s not unrealistic. John knows that life can be difficult. He simply refuses to get stuck there. You just never hear John complain. That’s the way it is with an encouraging leader, they communicate with a positive bias.

As Christian leaders it’s important to encourage spiritually. Continue to point people toward God, challenge their faith, and help them see that their trust in God is the best way to provide true, deep and meaningful encouragement. Though as leaders we must encourage, this helps people learn to find encouragement in God.

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