Leadership Summaries

Leadership Summaries

An old list of various summaries.  Slowly getting transferred on Innovatus.org.uk

Rich’s leadership axioms

Designed to sum up experience and be useful in making future decisions. Many are taken from elsewhere.

  • God makes leaders in a slow cooker, not a microwave
  • Follow your compass not your clock
  • If you were on your death bed, and your grandchild asked you what you achieved of significance, what would you say?
  • More ministries does not mean better ministries. Better ministries means better ministries.
  • Be integrated – be the same person everywhere
  • People like to give to success not desperation
  • No leader – no ministry, no project
  • Don’t count your critics – weigh them
  • Select for talent, not skills or knowledge
  • Define the desired outcomes, not the process
  • You can’t win any battle in which you are not willing to lay down your life
  • If your vision doesn’t scare you , then your vision and your God are too small
    • If you vision does not intimidate you, there is a good chance it insults God
  • Bias towards action
  • Sometimes to solve the problem you have to lose the pigs
    • Reference to Jesus in the Gaderenes – we want to problem solved, but do not want the cost
  • Power of focus
    • Alignment
    • Set priorities
  • Focus on the ultimate, no the immediate
  • Don’t try to run at someone’s pace

General Leadership

Personal Growth Environment

From John Maxwell – a personal growth environment is a time or place where

  1. Others are ahead of me
  2. I am continually challenged
  3. My focus is forward not backward
  4. The atmosphere is affirming
  5. I am out of my comfort zone (inside my gift zone)
  6. I wake up excited
  7. Failure is not my enemy
  8. Other people around me are growing
  9. People desire change
  10. Growth is modelled and expected

Why we need vision

(Taken from Growing Leaders, James Lawrence)

  • Identifies where God is leading this group of people
  • Captures imagination
  • Helps decision-making
  • Gives meaning to those who are following
  • Generates resources

Implementing vision

(Taken from Growing Leaders, James Lawrence)

  • Capture
    • Straightforward enough to be understood
    • Startling enough to be exciting
    • Specific enough to give direction
    • Simple enough to be remembered
  • Communicate
  • Connect
    • Help people see how what they do fits

Role in change

Different elements of change (role of the leader)

  • Telling
  • Selling
  • Consulting
  • Coaching

Different people respond to different methods.

Different methods are needed at different stages in change.

Vision as painting a picture

Casting vision can be like painting a picture. Different elements are added i a certain order:

  • Horizon
    • See the future – distance away
  • Sun
  • Mountains
    • Some obstacles / complications
  • Path
    • There is a way through
  • ‘Me’
    • Show the leader in the picture – not going anywhere
  • Familiar reference points

6 G’s of Ministry

(Richard Webb)

From the Book of Esther

  • Going
    • We are called to a foreign land
  • Gravity
    • What we do is of great significance
    • Matter of eternal life and death
  • Gospel
    • People need to know the truth
  • Gauging
    • Making decisions not based on outcomes
    • Instead asking who we are called to be
  • Giving
    • Not holding back anything of ourselves
    • 100%
  • Goals
    • Set ambitious goals
    • And who knows but that you are here for such a time as this

7 Secrets of Success

(Rick Warren-Just a minute)

  • Sense of direction
    • Phil 3:14
  • Understanding
    • Phil 4:12
  • Commitment
    • Acts 20:24
  • Compassion
    • 1 Cor 13:2-3
  • Enthusiastic faith
    • Phil 4:13
  • Service to others
    • 2 Cor 12:15
  • Staying power
    • 2 Cor 4:8-9

Servant Leadership

(Richard Webb)

Slave Servant Selfish
Serves Me (indirectly) Others & God Me
Responds to Others’ wants Others’ needs My wants
Focus People God Me
Pursues Approval Kingdom Power & prestige
See others as Masters Co-workers and heirs, loved by God Enemies, competitors or unimportant
Key difference from other two Born out of insecurity Prophetic & death to self Lacks relationship with God
Example 1 Pilot Jesus High priest?
Example 2 Aaron Moses Pharaoh

3 D’s of Leadership

  • Discomfort
  • Dissatisfaction
  • Disruption

Taken from Be all you can be – John Maxwell

Leadership lesson from the Navy

A group of people in the US got to spend some time on the USS Nimitz. Here are some reflections about leadership from one of them. Original Article

  • Inspiration
    • Having a big meaningful goal is a tremendous force for inspiration, motivation and cohesion. This also brings a sense of achievement and pride in success
  • Perspiration
    • If everyone buys into the goal, you can get an amazing amount of work done
  • Teamwork
    • Ethic about team performance
  • Recruiting and training
    • Not about fancy degrees and prior polish; it’s about commitment to excellence
  • Accountability and continuous improvement
    • Everything is monitored and measured- every system has to perform at 100% and there is a person responsible to make it happen
  • Respect
    • It is not an option on an aircraft carrier
  • Overcoming fear
    • You do it because it’s your responsibility and that’s the only way the mission gets accomplished
  • Work/life balance
    • Very tricky in this situation. They seemed to be able to find ways of relaxing in the break in action and being human.
  • Reverence and irreverence
    • Recognition of importance of task and possibility of the loss of life, yet also relaxed nature and nick names that make sure no-one takes themselves too seriously
  • 100% performance
    • People giving nothing less than their best

Fundamental State of Leadership

Adapted from Harvard Business Review July – August 2006

I am ready to lead when I am:

  • Results centred
    • Willing to leave comfort zone to make things happen
  • Christ directed
    • Led by Christ, not social or political factors
  • Other focused
    • Putting the collective good above my own needs
  • Externally open
    • Open to outside stimuli that may signal the need for change

Important Leadership Tools

Adapted from Harvard Business Essentials – Manager’s Toolkit

  • Set goals that others will pursue
    • Committing to an outcome
  • Get the best team
    • The role of people
  • Keep the team right
    • Retention matters
  • Delegate with confidence
    • Avoid being overworked or overwhelmed
  • Mange your time
    • Make the most of your day
  • Manage your team
    • Form a team that makes a difference
  • Appraise and coach
    • Improving result with confidence
  • Handling problem people
    • Motivating or letting go
  • Dealing with crisis
    • Don’t wait until they come
  • Develop your career
    • And theirs
  • Become a leader
    • The next level
  • Have a strategy
    • Make a plan

Styles of Leadership

(The Crossing 2006)

  • Pacifist
    • Keep the peace
  • Opportunist
    • Seize the moment
  • Gradualist
    • We need a plan
  • Catalyst
    • Change is necessary

Demonstrations of Leadership

(The Crossing 2006)

  • Servant
    • Minister
    • Meet needs
  • Steward
    • Manager
    • Administer the things of God
  • Sage
    • Mentor
    • Coach and counsel those around them
  • Seer
    • Mystic
    • Have vision and prepare people for it.

Product of Leadership

(The Crossing 2006)

Leaders produce:

  • Followers
    • No followers – you’re just going for a walk
  • Leaders
    • All organisms are designed to reproduce
  • Opposition
    • None of this – you are doing nothing
    • Nehemiah – within and without
  • Legacies
    • Bigger than any task accomplished

Passion of Leadership

(The Crossing 2006)

Recognise the

  • Power of passion
    • The make it happen characteristic of a leader
  • Priority of passion
    • Number one requirement of a leader
  • Pull of passion
    • Inbuilt need
    • If not passionate about right things, then passionate about wrong things
    • If not passionate about main things, then passionate about minor things

Overcoming the enemy of average

(The Crossing 2006)

Dealing with insecurity

  • Signs
    • Comparing
    • Victim mentality / self pity
    • Competitive
    • Controlling
    • Condemning
    • Critical
  • Overcoming
    • Focus on who you are in Christ
    • Stop yourself each time you compare
    • Focus on your strengths and uniqueness
    • Identify the lies you believe and tell yourself the truth
    • Serve – not just those you like, but all
  • How to develop integrity
    • Live for an audience of one
      • Don’t compartmentalise your faith
    • Decide always to be truthful
    • Listen to others
    • Receive Godly discipline
    • Be faithful in the small and natural things
    • Make it your aim to be real with God
    • Practice humility

Leading down

(360 degree leadership – John Maxwell)

  • Walk slowly through the halls
  • See everyone as a ‘10’
  • Develop each team member as a person
  • Place people in their strength zones
  • Model the behaviour you desire
  • Transfer the vision
  • Reward for results

Leadership Basics – Vision and Direction

“One of my young colleagues was officiating at the funeral of war veteran. The dead man’s military friends wished to have a part in the service at the funeral home, so they requested the pastor to lead them down to the casket, stand with them for a solemn moment of remembrance, and then lead them out through the side door. This he proceeded to do, but unfortunately the effect was somewhat marred when he picked wrong door. The result was they marched with military precision into a broom closet, in full view of the mourners, and had to beat a hasty retreat covered with confusion.”

This true story illustrates a cardinal rule or two.

  First, if you're going to lead, 
     make sure you know where you're going.
  Second, if you're going to follow, make sure that you are following
     someone who knows what they is doing!

Alternative view of Quality Leadership

(Secular) (Adrian Savage)

  • Restraint
  • Generosity
  • Mercy

How to discover you

(Secular) (Daily PlanIt)

1. Discover your heroes
2. Identify your strengths
3. Explore your skills
4. Examine your beliefs
5. Look at your values
6. Develop a mission statement
7. Learn about your personality and interests
8. Think about your talents and dreams
9. Tell your story
10. Express yourself

9 things you simply must do

Things that ‘successful’ people do:

  1. Dig it up
    1. Do not ignore the little signals that something is not right inside
  2. Pull the tooth
    1. Do something about the problem
  3. Play the movie
    1. Picture your future
  4. Do something
    1. Be pro-active, get on and be productive
  5. Act like an ant
    1. Be willing to build one small step at a time
  6. Hate well
    1. Choose what you will hate objectively
  7. Don’t play fair
    1. Grace; don’t return like for like or try to settle the score
  8. Be humble
    1. Stay grounded
  9. Upset the right people
    1. Don’t count your critics, weigh them

(From 9 things you simply must do, Dr. Henry Cloud)


5 Questions

Original article on HBR (Roger Martin) here

  1. What are our broad aspirations for our organization & the concrete goals against which we can measure our progress?
  2. Across the potential field available to us, where will we choose to play and not play?
  3. In our chosen place to play, how will we choose to win against the competitors there?
  4. What capabilities are necessary to build and maintain to win in our chosen manner?
  5. What management systems are necessary to operate to build and maintain the key capabilities?

The answers to these questions comes in order, but it is an iterative process, so the answer to the last one, may modify the first.

Doing Leadership

Process of Leadership

(The Crossing 2006)

  • Corporate
    • Results – Responsibilities – Roles – Relationships
  • Biblical
    • Relationships – Roles – Responsibilities – Results

Pieces of Leadership

(The Crossing 2006)

  1. Purpose
    1. What?
    2. Without this there is confusion
  2. Passion
    1. Why?
    2. Without this there is conflict
  3. Vision
    1. Where?
    2. Without this there is compromise
  4. Strategy
    1. How?
    2. Without this there is chaos
  5. Skills
    1. Which?
    2. Without this there is crisis

When all come together in the right order there is leadership

Pleasure of Planning

(The Crossing 2006)

Planning is both scriptural and spiritual


  • Define the plan
  • Build the plan
  • Implement the plan


  • Accept it
  • Commit to it
  • Invest in it


  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Results oriented / Relevant
  • Time dated

Goal Setting

[From Marcus Buckingham]

  • Effective goal-setting drives high performance
  • Too many goeals = no goals at all
  • Goals should set the outcome – not manage the process
  • Goals should be SMART
  • Set appropriate intervals for the team
  • Team goals aligned to the organisational goals
  • Create goals that play to the strengths of the individual

Leading others

Why people resist change

[From Elmer Towns in ‘Leaders on Leadership’]

  • Misunderstanding
  • Lack of ownership
  • Habit patterns
  • Perceived price is not worth it
  • Loss of something valuable
  • Satisfaction with status quo
  • Negative attitude towards all change
  • Lack of respect for the leader
  • Favouring tradition

Effective Leadership Training

  • Personal growth
  • Conceptual understanding
  • Feedback
  • Skill building

Conger, ‘Learning to lead’ via Leighton Ford

The making of a leader

Following Jesus’ pattern with disciples:

  • He called them
  • He named them (understand them and see them as they will become)
  • He made them a team
  • He trusted them
  • He tested them
  • He included them
  • He made them his friends
  • He warned them and restored them
  • He made them understand

Leighton Ford, ‘Transforming Leadership’

Key elements of Transformational leadership

  • Got attention through vision
  • Brought meaning through communication
  • Engendered trust through firmness and flexibility
  • Practised self-deployment through empowerment

From Benis and Nanus, ‘Leaders’ via Leighton Ford

Building healthy teams

(Becoming a healthy team – Stephen Macchia)

Healthy teams:

  • Trust
    • Built through Community
    • Built through Celebration
    • Built through Communication
    • Built through Conflict
  • Empower
    • Through Gifts and Passions
    • Through Defined Responsibilities
    • Through Teach-ability and Resourcing
    • Through Delegation and Accountability
  • Assimilate
    • Through Cross-Pollination
    • Through Others Orientation
    • Through Systemic Direction
    • Through Ministry Multiplication
  • Mange
    • Through Strategic Plans
    • Through SMART Goals
    • Through Systematic Administration
    • Through Results Evaluation
  • Serve
    • Through Heartfelt Prayer
    • Through Discernment of need
    • Through Fulfilment of Call
    • Through Transformation of Life

Communicating with different types of people

(Becoming a Healthy team)

  • Lion
    • Ambitious, forceful, decisive, strong-willed, goal oriented
    • Be clear, specific, brief and to the point
    • Stick to business
    • Reinforce with evidence
  • Otter
    • Magnetic, enthusiastic, friendly, demonstrative
    • Warm and friendly environment
    • Put details in writing
    • Ask ‘feeling’ questions to draw out response
    • Do not be curt, controlling or too detailed
  • Golden retriever
    • Patient, predictable, reliable, steady, relaxed, modest
    • Begin with personal comment
    • Present softly and in non-threatening way
    • Ask ‘how’ question
    • Do not rush into business, dominate, force to respond quickly
  • Beaver
    • Dependent, neat, conservative, perfectionist, careful
    • Prepare in advance
    • Stick to business
    • Be accurate and realistic
    • Do not be casual, informal, loud or push to hard

Key Practices for a Coach

(Willow Vol. 13 Issue 2)

  • Model
  • Guide
  • Envision
  • Equip

Growing Churches

What must leaders do to build prevailing churches?

(Willow Vol. 12 Issue 4 – Bill Hybels)

  1. Vision casting
  2. Build great teams
  3. Put on great services
  4. Raise resources
  5. Self leadership

Identifying leaders

Good Leaders are

(Becoming a healthy team)

  • Called
  • Commissioned
  • Compassionate
  • Capable
  • Committed

Serving Prerequisites

(Richard Webb)

  • Gifted
  • Passionate
  • Anointed
  • Trainable
  • Accountable

Types of leader

Possible linking of Eph 4 with current leadership theory. Descriptions of the terms used in the case of the latter. (Leadership – Spring 2008)

  • Apostle
    • Entrepreneur – Innovator and cultural architect who initiates a new product, or service, and develops the organisation
  • Prophet
    • Questioner – Provocateur who probes awareness and fosters questioning of current programming leading or organisational learning
  • Evangelist
    • Communicator – Recruiter to the organisation who markets the idea or product and gains loyalty to a brand or cause
  • Shepherds
    • Humaniser – People-oriented motivator who fosters a healthy relational environment through the management of meaning
  • Teachers
    • Philosopher – Systems-thinker who is able to clearly articulate the organisational ideology in a way as to advance corporate learning


Important elements of a team

From Tom Phillips in Leaders on Leadership

  • Led by a capable leader
  • Recruit qualified individuals
  • Share a common purpose
  • Focus on a singular task
  • Committed to completing the task together
  • Stress that members must die to self for the sake of the whole team
  • Commitment to excellence
  • Recognise and accept discipline
  • Remove those who were unfit or uncommitted

Information decisions

[From ‘Bit Literacy’ by Mark Hurst via Personal MBA]

Various actions to be taken on receipt of information in order to ‘complete’.

  • Act
  • Delegate
  • Defer
  • Delete
  • Archive
  • Ignore

Effective Teams

(Taken from Growing Leaders, James Lawrence)

  • Common purpose
    • Reason for cooperation
  • Roles and division of labour
    • Strategy for cooperation
  • Accepted leadership
    • Structure for cooperation
  • Effective plans and methods
    • Process of cooperation
  • Solid relationships
    • Climate for cooperation
  • Excellent communication
    • Means of cooperation

Building a successful team

  • Competency
    • they need the skill to full the task
  • Character
    • they need the ethics and values that align to the mission and vision
  • Chemistry
    • it is vital that you all flow together to achieve your goal

From Bill Hybels, Courageous Leadership

Building a strong and vibrant workplace

People operating at the peak of their performance cause institutions to perform. The following questions are indicators of success. Where employees answer positively to these questions the organisation will out perform others.

Base Camp – What do I get?

  • Do I know what is expected of me?
  • Do I have the equipment and materials I need to do my job right?

Camp 1 – What do I give?

  • Do I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day?
  • In the last seven days have I received recognition or praise for my work?
  • Does my supervisor, or someone else at work, seem to care about me as a person?
  • Is there someone at work who encourages me development?

Camp 2 – Do I belong here?

  • At work, do my opinions seem to count?
  • Does the mission of my organisation make me feel me job is important?
  • Are my co-workers committed to doing quality work?
  • Do I have a best friend at work?

Camp 3 – How can we all grow?

  • In the last six months has someone talked to me about my progress?
  • In the last year, have I had opportunities at work to learn and grow?

First break all the rules

Four keys of Great Managers

  • Select for talent
    • I.e. not skills or knowledge
    • Talent is usually more about the way someone is ‘built’
    • Skills and Knowledge can be taught
  • Define the right outcomes
    • I.e. do not define process
    • Let the individual find the best way to the desired result
  • Focus on strengths
    • I.e. do not act remedially
    • Help people get even better at what they do well
    • Spend the most time etc. with the best performers
  • Find the right fit
    • I.e. do not make people ‘climb the ladder’ to progress
    • Allow people to move forward in the role that fit best into
    • E.g. a great sales person does not necessarily make a great sales manager

(From ‘First, break all the rules’, Buckingham & Coffman)


  • Have the talent interview stand alone
  • Ask open questions and keep quiet
    • Even avoid clarifying – you want to see how the person responds
  • Listen for specifics
    • It happened yesterday
    • Probing for specifics misses the point – it should come naturally
  • Clues to talent
    • Probe for things learnt quickly
    • Probe for what causes personal satisfaction
  • Pick the right questions and know the right answers
    • Find others who perform and find their answers

(From ‘First, break all the rules’, Buckingham & Coffman)

Performance Management


  • Simplicity
  • Frequent interaction
  • Focus on the future
  • Self-tracking

Strengths interview

Once a year

  1. What did you enjoy most about your previous work experience? What bought you here? What keeps you here?
  2. What do you think your strengths are? (Skills knowledge and talent)
  3. What about your weaknesses?
  4. What are your goals for your current role? (Scores and timelines)
  5. How often do you like to meet with me to discuss your progress? Are you the kind of person who will tell me how you are feeling or will I have to ask?
  6. Do you have any personal goalos or commitment you would like to tell me about?
  7. What is the best praise you have ever received? What made it so good?
  8. Have you had any really productive partnerships or mentors? Why do you think these relationships worked so well for you?
  9. What are your future growth goals, your career goals? Are there any particualr skills you want to learn? Are there some specific experiences you want to have? How can I help you?
  10. Is there anything else you want to talk about that might help us work well together?

Performance Meetings

Regularity determined by Qu. 5 above

Answers to be prepared beforehand

  1. What actions have you taken?
    1. Scores, figures, performance in general
  2. What discoveries have you made?
    1. Anything learnt
  3. What partnerships have you built?
    1. New or existing ones strengthened, internal or external

Then move on to the next questions

  1. What is your main focus?
    1. Primary goals for next period
  2. What new discoveries are you planning?
  3. What new partnerships are you planning?

(May want to change terms such as ‘discovery’ or ‘partnerships’.

(From ‘First, break all the rules’, Buckingham & Coffman)

Effective Meetings

Running meetings effectively is hugely important. Here are some guides to help:

Before the meeting:

  • Define goals for the meeting
    • What will be different after this meeting?
  • Prepare an agenda in advance
    • People neet to know what they will be thinking about
    • This also helps keep things on track
  • Administrivia (Recognise set up time before meeting)

During the meeting:

  • Keep Topics Relevant to the Attendees
    • Consider stating why each person has been invited
    • Consider inviting some people to specific sections of the meeting
  • Demonstrate Respect for People’s Time
    • Start and finish on time
    • Remove time-wasting distractions
  • Administrivia
    • Ask permission to extend the meeting if neccessary
  • Deliverables
    • What is the output?

After the meeting:

  • Wrap-up
    • Summarise progress and decisions
    • Confirm next steps

(Original article)

Action Points

(Richard Webb)

For a meeting to have been effective it must use action points

Action points must be:

  • Agreed
    • Is this what we want to happen?
  • Assigned
    • Who is going to do it?
  • Assessed
    • Did they do it?
  • Analysed
    • Was it successful?

Meeting Killers

Some statements are guaranteed to wreck creativity

  1. Our place is different
  2. We tried that before.
  3. It costs too much.
  4. That’s not my job.
  5. They’re too busy to do that.
  6. We don’t have the time.
  7. Not enough help.
  8. It’s too radical a change.
  9. The staff will never buy it.
  10. It’s against company policy.
  11. The union will scream.
  12. That will run up our overhead.
  13. We don’t have the authority.
  14. Let’s get back to reality
  15. That’s not our problem.
  16. I don’t like the idea.
  17. I’m not saying you’re wrong but…
  18. You’re two years ahead of your time.
  19. Now’s not the right time.
  20. It isn’t in the budget.
  21. Can’t teach an old dog new tricks.
  22. Good thought, but impractical.
  23. Let’s give it more thought.
  24. We’ll be the laughingstock of the industry.
  25. Not that again.
  26. Where’d you dig that one up?
  27. We did alright without it before.
  28. It’s never been tried.
  29. Let’s put that one on the back burner for now.
  30. Let’s form a committee.
  31. It won’t work in our place.
  32. The executive committee will never go for it.
  33. I don’t see the connection.
  34. Let’s all sleep on it.
  35. It can’t be done.
  36. It’s too much trouble to change.
  37. It won’t pay for itself.
  38. It’s impossible.
  39. I know a person who tried it and got fired.
  40. We’ve always done it this way.
  41. We’d lose money in the long run.
  42. Don’t rock the boat.
  43. That’s what we can expect from the staff.
  44. Has anyone else ever tried it?
  45. Let’s look into it further.
  46. We’ll have to answer to the stockholders.
  47. Quit dreaming.
  48. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
  49. That’s too much ivory tower.
  50. It’s too much work.

(Original Article)

What does a manager do?

  • People: Managers concentrate on strengths and make weaknesses irrelevant.
  • Place: Managers create great workplaces where people thrive.
  • Mission: Managers get the work to make perfect sense.
  • Vision: Managers expect and promote the exceptional.

Original Article

You need to show up

These items are taken from a secular source. Very interesting!

  • Show up with your tools – begin using your gifts at least a small amount each day. It’s incredibly empowering.
  • Show up with your energy – put 100% of your effort in everything you do for one day and see what kind of results you get.
  • Show up with your words – try using only positive words for one day and complement others.
  • Show up with your blinders on – for one day, let the dumb mistakes of others go unseen.
  • Show up with your pallet – eat only good food, anything you want for one day, registered dieticians and killjoys be damned.
  • Show up with a gift – give a small token gift to someone you know for no reason.

Lifehack.org Tony D Clark

Six hats

Six ways to view a decision:

  • White hat – data and history
  • Red hat – emotion and gut reaction
  • Black hat – downsides and barriers
  • Yelloe hat – benefits and positives
  • Green hat – creativity and free-thinking
  • Blue hat – Process control – facilitates other hats

Original article


Colwelian Lessons

  • What kind of God? – So What?
    • Preaching
    • Pastoral care
    • Personal faith
    • Do not use outcomes
  • Bible is a book of stories
    • Read it as such
    • Realise subjectivity and hence provisionality of interpretation