Leading with Confidence

I just got back from the U.K. after 5 weeks.  It’s been an interesting time especially watching  Prime minister, Mrs Theresa  May battle with her own party over Brexit.  Having finally secured the agreement to move to the next stage, which people had criticised her for taking so long, when she defended it in Parliament some felt she was ‘over-confident.  Yet in the next few days when her Brexit Bill was defeated she was said to ave been “humiliated in Parliament”.

Leaders have to make tough choices and finding the balance between confidence and seeming arrogance, or even Narcissism, as many label President Trump is never easy.  This short Facebook Live video focuses on the need for leaders to be confident, yet demonstrate humility.

 

 

3 Keys for successful Change, Transition and Transformation

Leading change is a key leadership competency.. This post explores 3 keys for being successful in change, transition and transformation

Leading change, navigating transition, seeking transformation

The ability to lead change has become a key leadership competency but this is only half the story. As a Purposed Leader you have to lead change, navigate transition and seek transformation. This post explores 3 keys to achieving successful change, transition and transformation.

Leading Change

Have you ever been incensed by something or moved to compassion, not just once but repeatedly?   In those moments we need to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit as these can be indications that we have heard the Father’s heart. The very things he mourns over and wants to change.  When we are moved like this change is instantaneous.  It is a change of heart.

The key to success in leading change is getting our head to align with our heart.  

When I started this blog I spoke about the crisis of leadership that the world is experiencing. I was struck at a heart level of the need for this to change.  However, it took me a little time to get my head to align with this heart change.  getting our heads to align means taking a leap of faith – stepping out as Holy Spirit guides.   A good example of the challenges of getting head and heart to align was  Jonah.  We must determine to align our head and heart and run towards God. To let Him show us how to lead the change he is initiating, or will we run from God’s calling like Jonah.

Navigating Transition

This week I moved from Turks and Caicos Islands back to Barbados. My husband and I have been away from Barbados for over two and a half years, first living in Montserrat and then moving to the Turks and Caicos Islands. We had not expected to return to Barbados so soon, if at all, especially, with such a turbulent economic climate. Moreover because our Caribbean travels have included our 3 dogs!

Despite the initial fear of change, or for some of us excitement – navigating transition is the next biggest hurdle. When you move from one country to another you have to learn to live in the new country, to navigate the transition. For example, when we moved from the U.K. to Spain to Barbados. We often reflected on how things were done in the U.K. ans sometimes complained! This was of no help at all because we were no-longer in the U.K. and so we had to focus on our new reality.

The second key for successful transition is to be forward-looking.

Transition requires leaving behind the old and navigating the new.

Remembering your passion and purpose during a change helps you to focus forward.  This is a key principle:

“Jesus said,  No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.”

Jesus was talking about those who come to Christ should not look back seeking the things of the world.  The principle equally applies that once we embark on a change we should not look back to the old but should keep focused on the new.

This is a process and can take quite a long-time, look at the children of Israel…40 years in the wilderness!

Lance on transition

Seeking Transformation

As a Purposed Leader you likely have a desire to see our world transformed through your sphere of influence.  However, all too often we are focused on results, that is behaviour modification, rather than transformation that occurs I the heart and then changes behaviour.

Our Society is performance driven.  Also, if like me, you are results oriented, this compounds our focus on behaviour, tangibles.  However, God is looking for transformed hearts.  I was leading a Government Transformation Programme which consisted of 8 projects.  Both the organisation and the country were in great need of transformation and the people were longing to see their country restored.  I wore myself out trying to make this happen by changing structures and systems.  It was not until I heard the Holy Spirit speak to me through a good friend that I realised, all my striving was in vain because:

God doesn’t redeem structures but people

The third key for successful transformation is to focus on people, not structures or systems.  

I understand the need for God’s people to ‘show up’ in every sphere in society.  We also need to be able to speak truth to power but we cannot forget it is God who transforms, not us.

For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God” (Romans 8:13-14).

We must join God in the change he’s initiating, not determine our own change.

The Most Important Leadership Requirement

3 critical Leadership requirements are Passion, Purpose and Principle. Which of the 3 is the most important to be a Great Leader.

Last week I wrote about 3 requirements for great leadership,  Passion, Purpose and Principle.  I had quite a few questions from readers.  The most  frequently asked question was, which of the 3 requirements for Leadership, is most important. This week I try and answer that question.

Passion

Everyone wants to join a cause they are passionate about.  Yet in a world where few hold to their convictions, where mediocrity is acceptable and conformity (‘think like us or you will be ostracized) abounds is what we call “passion”, really passion?  I describe passion as a ‘ burning desire of the heart’.  The heart being your inner man, your core.  The Passion I’m talking about is not dependent on external circumstances or tied to the latest craze or cause. Its a desire that makes you excited, that drives you and that if not fulfilled leaves you wanting.

Last week I spoke about my passion for Public speaking.  It’s what I love to do and I feel as if I could burst when I’m in my flow.  My husband is passionate about movies, loves to watch them, critique them and ultimately this led to him writing a short movie script that was produced by a youth organisation.  Both of us do these things even without pay as it’s a burning desire.

Another way to think of it is the Biblical Term “Zeal”.  Zeal can be positive or negative. David was Zealous about the Lord.  So much so that he didn’t mind looking a fool, despite his wife’s contempt at his undignified dancing in Praise of his God.!You see passion costs us something.  It’s not always easy and often requires a leap of faith.

Passion is an important leadership requirement as it’s the fuel that drives us.  It gives us energy and helps us to accelerate.  However, just like fuel for a vehicle, without a vehicle the fuel is useless.  Passion needs purpose to realise that desire and so become fulfilled.  Passion also needs Principle to ensure we use our passion in a ‘worthy manner’.

The question remains –  is Passion the more important of the 3 Leadership requirements? Given that Passion needs both Purpose and Principle I would say No.

Purpose

Purpose gives us meaning and direction.  As I mentioned in my blog The Secret to Success having purpose in life is essential to our well-being.  We were designed to fulfill purpose .

If Passion needs the vehicle of Purpose to be fulfilled; Purpose needs passion or else it becomes ‘obligation’.  Full of should’s and ought’s.  Finding our purpose must be more than an obligation, or, performance.  Purpose should be freeing, obligation and performance are stifling.  If Purpose is approached as obligation we are likely to labour in the wrong vineyard. If approached as performance we are likely to suffer burn out and may not ‘fulfill our hearts desires’.

Before I had a sense of, or should I say accepted my purpose as a leader.  I spent much time trying to fit into a purpose I had created from something that I value.  I have a huge justice streak.  Two of my personal values speak to this:

  • Insight; for me this means seeking to understand people’s passions, gifts and experiences and valuing and respecting their differences and treating them with fairness even if I do not hold the same values.
  • Trust; that is demonstrating integrity (honesty) and intent (right/honurable motives).

Because I held these core values I believed my purpose was to fight for justice for others being a Barrister/Lawyer. For a while this kept me ‘stuck’ in a job I knew was not for me and burn out occurred. I also wasn’t being effective in helping others.

When we get a revelation of God’s Purpose for our lives, this changes everything.

Purpose not only gives us direction in life – it allows us to dream big. Free of should’s and ought’s.

So is Purpose the most important Leadership requirement?  Again I would say No as Purpose needs Passion and Principle.

Principle

Principle without passion can become legalism.  When we seek to fulfill the Great Co-Mission but have not tapped into our passion we may be zealous but become like the Apostle Paul.  Paul persecuted Christians sincerely believing he was doing the work of the Church.

We may have a passion and know our purpose but principle will ensure we fulfill our desires and goal in the right way.  Moreover, principles are essential to wisdom.  Wisdom has been said to be about knowing which principles to apply in a the right context.  If Passion is to be fulfilled and Purpose is to be executed then wisdom is essential for both.

So is Principle the most important Leadership requirement. Again I’d say No. but it could be considered the foundation.  In-fact perhaps another way to think of the 3 requirements is like this:

Each of the requirements are equally important, what is central, the most important is the Source from which our passion, purpose and principle flow.

Perhaps one of the sides of the triangle is more in focus for you right now.  I’d love to hear your views and experiences.  Feel free to leave a comment or email me on: felicia@purposed4leadership.com

3 Requirements for Great Leadership

My last post looked at purpose; but this alone is insufficient to become a great leader. This article looks at 3 requirements needed for great leadership.

Passion, Purpose and Principle

For the past 2 weeks we’ve been talking about purpose.  Great leadership requires more than purpose.  In this post I explore the 3 components required for great leadership.

Great leaders show up with Passion, Purpose and Principle.

We may not know our specific purpose, our mission, but we may have a passion that is evident.  What is that burning desire that you have or thing you love to do and would willingly do even if  you were not paid?  When we tap into our God-given passion it is a great motivator and can be one of the clues to discovering our specific purpose.

As for our purpose, without a purpose to give our life meaning we will drift and not achieve those works that the Lord “pre-destined” for us to do before we were born.  As a Purposed Leader you have an innate sense of wanting to achieve a goal or purpose bigger than yourself to the benefit of others.   Lastly, a leader who is principled displays a character consistent with fundamental truths.

Passion, Purpose Principle

Passion

We often ignore our passion for fear that it doesn’t sound ‘worthy’ enough.

I have a passion for performing, in particular public speaking. As a child this was seen positively. It was not the case as an adult.  If I mentioned my passion it was as if I was saying “I’m self-absorbed, love to be in the limelight and I’m shallow”.  Yet, my passion for public speaking led me to choose a career as a Barrister, rather than initially  becoming a solicitor.  I also had a passion for justice but frankly my passion for public speaking was greater.  I love to communicate ideas and concepts to groups.  No surprise that I later became a facilitator.

A book that helped me to embrace my passion was Discovering Your God Given-Gifts.  The book includes a tool that assesses your motivational gifts consistent with Romans 12: 6-8 (NIV)

In their book the authors, Don and Katie Fortune look at the gifts in relation to the function in the body, using the analogy of the body.  My top 2 gifts are Teacher and Perceiver/Prophet – these are considered ‘speaking gifts’. That was so validating for me to learn that.

Our passions flow from our unique personality both are God’s gift to us and should be embraced

How we use our passion is what renders them worthy or unworthy.  Principle is what helps us use them in a worth manner.

Purpose

We have spoken about purpose in my last 2 posts.  We have a common purpose but discovering our  specific purpose, our mission is critical.  Having a sense of purpose is what keeps us focused – especially in the difficult times. More than just discovering our purpose we must put energy into executing it.

Principle

Today’s culture suggests that truth is relative; this was not always so.  I believe there are Universal Absolute Truths that do not change.  Jesus distilled these truths in his teachings into principles for us to live by.  There are many who say well you aren’t living by all the Bible. They will cite the Old Testament laws many of which we no-longer follow to the letter.  The challenge here is such critics lack a proper understanding of scripture and especially the context of the Old Testament laws and the concept of substance over form.  Thankfully, Jesus distilled the Old Testament laws into principles in the New Testament.  Such principles include:

  • Caring for all people – treat your neighbour the way you want to be treated (Luke 6:31, Philip 2:3)
  • Exercising personal discipline – being pro-active ( Proverbs 13:4, Heb 12:11)
  • Focusing on what’s important and persevering (Phip 3:12-14, Col 1:11-12)

No matter the critics it is even more important in today’s ‘dog eat dog culture’ that we are ‘living testimonies’.  That our lives demonstrate the good news of the Kingdom and what Kingdom principles look like.  Having a purpose helps us do this.

I invite you this week to re-discover your passion and to evaluate what principles you are living by.

The Secret to Success

Purpose – the Secret to great sleep!

Ever read about the habits of successful leaders?  One of the habits is making health a priority – nutrition, exercise and sleep

I’ve been struggling with my sleep for ages. I have a tracker and one of the things it tracks is my REM and Deep Sleep combined. I’ve been aiming for the recommended Deep Sleep 20% and REM sleep 25% so combined total of 45%.
I tried lots of different things to improve the quality of my sleep, including taking Melatonin, which had short-term impact. But in the last 2 weeks I have noticed a significant shift in my sleep pattern averaging combined REM and Deep Sleep of 43.6% up from an average of 32.1%.

So, what happened?
Well I made a decision to put ‘action to my faith’.  I developed a schedule to enable me to:

stop pondering life purpose and put energy to executing it!

That happened 2 weeks ago and then I woke up this morning to this Inc article:  which notes that researchers at Northwestern University found that “having a purpose in life specifically results in fewer sleep disturbances and improved sleep quality and over a long period of time”.

What if I don’t know my Purpose?

If I don’t know your purpose you need to find it – but how?

Often we make the search for meaning in our lives complicated. When I work with corporations to execute strategy- things are easier with those who have a clear strategy – clarity comes from alignment to their Mission (the reason they exist), their Vision (the impact they dream of making), and their core values. Without too much explanation I can tell you that a Corporation’s Mission IS NOT to make money…although too many think it is. If you want to understand a little more on this, my Blog The Power of Why’

So where do we start?   Start with what you know!   If you have a faith you know you were “created”.  The book, The Purpose Driven Life – Rick Warren  sets out 5 purposes, including being planned for God’s pleasure. I like to think of these multiple purposes as being part of the ‘fullness of our purpose’.

So we know we are planned for God’s pleasure.  We also know we were pre-destined  and that God’s thoughts towards us are “good and not of evil to give us a future and a hope We were no accident, we were planned for by God and He has a purpose for us:

It’s in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for. Long before we first heard of Christ and got our hopes up, he had his eye on us, had designs on us for glorious living, part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone –Ephes 11-12 (Msg)

So what is the overall purpose God is working out? Well we may not know the full extent of this but what we do know is – He intends to reconcile everything to Himself through Christ. Regarding mankind this is to be achieved through the Great Commission “Go make disciples of all nations…”   I love the word “commission” I think of it as two words Co and Mission, that is co-labouring with Christ to execute the Mission . This is a great starting point as it shows we all have, like a Corporation, One Mission.

Executing our Mission

When I think about the ‘fullness of our purpose’ a key part of that is answering the question – how will I execute the Mission?  Just as in a Corporation every individual has a unique part to play in executing the mission so to with us.

Dr. John Stanko is an expert on ‘Purpose’ and helped me on my Purpose journey, which started back in 2000.  His book ‘Life’s a Gold-mine- can you dig it’ really does have nuggets of Gold. Key principles I learned from Dr. Stanko was that finding the unique part of your purpose,  is a journey of discovery.  We must keep asking and seeking the Lord and know he will answer and we will find it. I also learned to be aware of where I ‘sensed God’s pleasure’, that is those things that you do naturally, easily and know it can make a difference.

As you come with me on this journey as one who is Purposed4Leadership take some time to think about your unique Passions, Experiences and Gifts and ask the Lord how you can execute the great Co-Mission.

Have a Great weekend