Leadership Tension in Tough Times
Last week I was invited along with 7 or 8 other pastors to spend an afternoon with Bill Hybels.  The purpose of the gathering was to get us some pumped about the upcoming Leadership Summit. (Which by the way – it looks like they have put together an extraordinary line-up).  But after we spent about 30-45 minutes talking about the Summit we got to do just Q & A with Bill the rest of the afternoon.  And I’m telling you, if there is any doubt – the guy is a genius when it comes to the topic of leadership!

One of the concepts we discussed I scratched out on the napkin pictured above.  The topic was leadership tension during tough times.  The two tensions are as follows:

  • DEFINING REALITY – According to the Peter Drucker, “the first job of a leader is to define reality.”
  • FAITH BASED OPTIMISM – The second job of the leader is to envision the future in way that inspires the people that follow him to believe for and help create a new reality.

One of my observations is that the percentage of time you spend doing each of these activities differs based on what part of the organization or movement you are leading.  With the inner circle of top level leaders you can spend a lot more time defining reality and confronting the brutal facts with a fair measure of faith based optimism.  With the masses you need to lead with a lot more faith based optimism and a measure of defining reality.

As you think about how you are leading through tough times what are some of your new learning’s?

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