Are You Leading A Team Or Driving A Group Of Individuals?

The principles of "leading" I am about to discuss apply to all leaders across the board. No matter what type of leader you may be, you must lead in a away that develops a team...not a group of individuals!

Throughout my years in ministry and in retail I have observed and learned a few simple principles that are highly successful in developing a team. It is a team you want. Not a group of individuals. When everyone is a team player, you have an effective, successful team. Whatever the mission before you...it will be accomplished.

The first principle in developing a genuine team is that you the leader must be a team player. You must be willing to get in there and rub elbows with your subordinates. Yes...you are the leader, but you must be a team player as well. Your subordinates will gain confidence in your leadership, and you will gain their respect if you are willing to lend a helping hand when necessary. As a matter of fact, the best way to train them is to show them, not just tell them.

As an example, I remember when I worked for a large, national retail chain. Our store general manager sat in his office and gave orders to everyone else. He only came out on the floor when there was a problem (or when the district manager showed up). We continuously failed our compliance evaluations because no one really knew what to do...as a team. When that manager was canned we got a totally different one. He rolled up his sleeves, got involved with the people, and taught us a lot about the business. He still gave the orders and made all the command decisions. He didn't have the best personality, but he produced an effective, successful team. He was a team player and thus an effective leader. I learned more from him than any other manager.

Another crucial principle in leadership is the principle of praise and reward. Sadly this principle is missing in most management/leadership scenarios today. When members of your team perform well, praise them; reward them. When the entire team does well, do the same! I used to give "high-fives" to my team members when they reached a goal or performed well. Some thought it was silly at first. But after a short while I began to hear, "Where's my high-five?" They even began to give one another high-fives! If a person never receives positive recognition and reward from leadership, but instead receives only correction from the same, that member will feel isolated from the team. When team members feel isolated, there really is no team. Don't make your team members feel unimportant, because they really are very important!

Another principle I want to discuss is training. Training is crucial. When a team member feels prepared, they will perform in an effective manner. But when they are not prepared, they cannot be as effective. Sadly many team members receive more correction, even discipline for not doing it the right way...when they were never taught to do it the right way! The truth is...it is the leader's fault for not insuring they are properly trained! Make sure your team is properly trained for the mission. This is a crucial leadership responsibility! And did I mention this was crucial?

Question: Is longevity in an employee/volunteer a sign of good leadership? Maybe, maybe not. Many people stay on for job security, but hate their job. Many people miss out on living their God-given destiny...simply for job security. They never actually live their dream. There are some however, who stay because they are truly content. They live their dream! These folks love their job/position and are quite effective at it. These folks are team players. And this should be the goal of every leader...to make team players.

So, are you driving a group of individuals or are you leading a team? Many leaders drive, and will never be effective at leading. Remember, leading has not only the mission in mind, but equally as important, the team member. Jesus is known as the great Shepherd, not the great cattle driver. He said of Himself, "I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep." (John 10:11) Like Jesus, any good shepherd/leader makes it paramount to blaze a trail for those he influences as well as get the mission accomplished. If you are a good leader, you are developing an effective team that will accomplish the mission and more!


017612: Life Changing Leadership: Identifying and Developing Your Team"s Full Potential Life Changing Leadership: Identifying and Developing Your Team's Full Potential
By Frank Damazio

* Unlock the doors to successful leadership with Damazio's key principles! Demonstrating how Scripture establishes God as head of the church government, he outlines qualities to help you lead in a lukewarm, compromising environment. Discover how to choose qualified candidates for church positions, train them to motivate others, execute goals that support faithfulness, and more. 224 pages, softcover from Baker.

The Most Powerful Form of Giving

With all the abusive teaching and practices concerning giving these days (especially in the church), I can understand one being a little leery about getting involved in the process. However, amidst all the abusive clutter we must know the heart of Jesus concerning this extremely basic principle. Yes, giving is a Biblical principle that when exercised moves the heart of Jesus. So it makes great sense to know His heart concerning giving.

There is an incident in Mark Chapter 12 in which Jesus literally observes people giving. As Jesus is observing (observing, not watching) he notices there are a lot rich people giving large sums. Big bucks were being dropped in the treasury.  Why would Jesus be so concerned to the point of observing how people were giving? Let's look a little closer at the incident in Mark. At one point Jesus notices a very poor widow come forward and put in just two copper coins (one cent). His heart was moved to an immediate response. “Truly I say to you, this poor widow put in more than all the contributors to the treasury!” Remember many rich folk were coming and putting in large sums of money. This poor widow put in just a cent’s worth and Jesus calls it more than all the others combined! What was He thinking? Here is the heart of Jesus: “…for they all put in out of their surplus, but she, out of her poverty, put in all she owned, all she had to live on." To give out of poverty is the same as giving out of your need.

This is the most powerful form of giving; giving out of your need, not from your surplus. It is easy to give out of surplus. To give out of your surplus is to trust in your own supply. But to give out of your need is to trust Jesus. In addition, to give out of your need is to give all you have, and trust Jesus to take care of you. There is divine power in this kind of giving. Why? Because God is moved to get involved in the process!

Giving out of your need takes an exercise of your faith. Faith moves the heart of Jesus, and thus His hand! Most folks give when they have it. There is no faith in this…and there is no divine power either. But there are a few who, like the poor widow, give out of their need or lack. They don’t have much to give, but according to Jesus, it is more than the rest combined! O that we would just take hold of this extremely powerful principle available to us today!

A question for you: Does Jesus observe the way you give? Is He really that concerned whether you give out of your own surplus, or out of your need? The answer is yes! Jesus is concerned because there are people in this world you can help today simply by giving even just a little. He is equally concerned with your heart, and how much you trust Him in your giving. He knows that if your trust Him, He can bless others through you.

Let me encourage you. In this brand new year of 2015, find a place to give. But let it be a stretch for you. Give in such a way you must trust Jesus. Exercise your faith. Make a commitment to give out of your own lack or need. Make a divine difference. Yes...according to Jesus it is the most powerful form of giving.


21177: The Act Of Marriage, Revised & Updated - Paperback The Act Of Marriage, Revised & Updated - Paperback
By Tim LaHaye

This updated and expanded edition gives a fresh, informative edge to an already definitive book.

For engaged couples and newlyweds who want to make lovemaking a joy from the start...for couples who have been married for years and want to maintain the flame or rekindle the embers...for every husband or wife who wants to be a better lover - The Act of Marriage provides insights into the male and female body, psychosexual makeup, and the need for the tender, unselfish affection that can help married couples achieve their intimate goals.