6 Practices for Christian Leaders in Business / Ministry to Go the Distance (Part 2)

Christian Leaders
Have you ever wondered if you have what it takes to go the distance as a Christian leader in business or ministry? And, what does a FREE MBA assessment download and PepsiCo’s CEO, Indra Nooyi, have to do with it?

photo credit: bDom

Me too, that’s why Indra Nooyi’s recent LinkedIn in article What I’ve learned from a decade of being PepsiCo’s CEO caught my eye and inspired me to write this post (part 2 of 2) – and adapt some of her principles, (which continue to help me go the distance in my leadership calling) but to include even more scripture, because God’s Word just works! I hope God will use it to encourage and challenge you. (Read here to catch or review the first 3 practices from part 1 of this post):
  1. The Power of Vision
  2. Live T.E.R.N.
  3. Ensure Cultural Change Sticks

4) Listen carefully

Listening carefully provides us with insight, that leads to deeper understanding, which leads to greater compassion, which cultivates lasting team initiatives and actions.
“Everyone should be quick to listen and slow to speak.” ~ James 1:19
The powerful principle? The ratio of our listening should far outweigh our speaking. “First seek to understand and then be understood” is one of those “language matters” principles made famous by Stephen Covey that relates. And guess where that principle came from?
“He who answers before listening–that is his folly and shame.” ~ Proverbs 18:13 “The purposes of a man’s heart are deep waters, but a man of understanding draws them out.” ~ Proverbs 20:5

God’s Word Works!

How are you doing at listening? Seeking first to understand before being understood? 

5) People are everything

In 3 Things Built to Last I wrote that there are only three things that will last for eternity: The Triune God, His Word, and people. The success of a family, a business, a church, or a non-profit organization all comes down to its people. As a leader of a non-profit organization there are positions, pay, and other perks I wish I could provide those who are a part of our support team, that I can’t. What I can do, however, is to make sure they know how much I appreciate them through personal thank you notes (many of which I still write by hand and send via snail mail), phone calls, text prayers, bragging them up in front of others, connecting them to other people or resources in the network of relationships God has given me, etc. These touches may not seem like much, but they speak volumes. According to Gary Chapman in 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace Gallup has reported that 70% of people in the United States say they receive no praise or appreciation in their workplaces. The MBA (Motivation By Affirmation) Assessment is a simple, yet powerful tool I have used with business and non-profit leaders to help them learn how to better speak the appreciation language of their employees and volunteers.

Click here for a PDF download of this tool to learn how effectively speak the appreciation language of those you serve in your workplace / ministry – and help others do the same.

If you find it helpful and want to give back, your one time or recurring donation here would be most appreciated in our ongoing mission to developing courageous Christian Business & Church Leaders for world-wide kingdom impact.

6) The “leaf-raking” doctrine

Years ago I read an article by a famed speaker and author where he described a time when God’s Spirit moved mightily to transform lives as he was speaking at a conference. When he arrived home, he couldn’t wait to share with his wife all that happened as a result of his talk. Before he got two sentences out of his mouth, his wife said something like, “Yeh, that’s great honey, but the leaves need to be raked before it rains!” God’s Spirit whispered to his heart through his wife’s comment: “Don’t forget about me. And don’t forget about the needs of your family.”  What a gift from God to have people in our lives who can help ground us. As scripture warns, a leader’s race can be cut short by pride. Conversely, a humble and teachable spirit can lead to longevity and greater influence.
“God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.” ~ 1 Peter 5:5-6
I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to be tripped up by pride. One of my practices to guard against hubris is to offer up some “rug prayers” to the Lord during the week. A rug prayer is laying prostrate before the Lord and/or kneeling before Him. This external expression reminds me that He is God and I’m not. That I am only a vine. Jesus is the branch. Seeking the counsel of other godly individuals has also been a guardrail practice to reveal blindspots and to keep me from driving off a pride cliff. The following verse softens my heart every time I read or think of it, causing me to thank God for the people in my life who provide such a loving service.
“Let a righteous man strike me–it is a kindness; let him rebuke me–it is oil to my head. My head will not refuse it.” ~ Psalm 141:5

Who do you have that you allow to speak into your life like this? How are you guarding your heart from the destructive spirit of pride?


Continue the Conversation:  

  • What is a principle driven by Scripture that is helping your leadership go the distance?
You can leave your comment here and/or share your responses to this Tipping Point via the social share tabs below. I love hearing from you!

Dan Anderson, President/CEO of KWM

Chuck Colson once said, “Christians are called to redeem entire cultures, not just individuals.”  I hope you were challenged by this post and found even a small Tipping Point that will help you to be the culture changing agent for Christ He desires for you to be in your family, business, church, and community. If so, we would love to hear from you!
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