So much about leadership is confidence and discernment. Its about knowing why you are doing something and knowing when to do it. Did you do the right thing? Was it the right timing? Did you move too quickly? Did you delay too long? Leadership is often a risky role. It requires confidence and certainty. As leaders, we have to practice intentional, determined posture day in and day out; nothing less will serve our people well.
Confidence is our belief that God can and will accomplish what He has called us to do in life. The result of confident leadership is momentum. We build strength in our own voices, and we develop internal rigidity. We start to trust our own voices, so much so that we begin to bolster our own opinions and desires as more valuable than the opinions and desires of others. And because we have such confidence in our consistency, we naturally create a culture of trusting our personal strengths: "This company (family, organization, church) is successful because of my rightness." To challenge a leaders rightness is to challenge their success and to serve disloyally toward the strongest part of the organization: its leadership.
No one wins with an insecure, hesitant leader, but equally unsuccessful is the leader who is impervious to input or feedback. The counterbalance to great confidence is equal parts humility. By humility, I mean paying attention to and learning how other people experience us. We make it a priority to gain this information. Strong, mature leaders welcome input from those around them. Theyve slayed their inner dragons that rise up at threats of opposing views. Theyve learned to honor perspectives they have not yet considered, and leaders incorporate information gleaned from others when making their decisions. These types of leaders are learning, growing, and gaining new information on purposeevery day. We really do not have accurate information about what goes on inside the hearts and minds of other people until we welcome ituntil we ask. Today, a willingness to be receptive is an important leadership quality and skillperhaps now more than ever.
We also benefit from having a receptive attitude because it informs us on how to make key adjustments in relationships, conversations, and decisions. Our rightness is more accurate than ever because our information is cleaner and more accurate than ever. Being right doesnt have to be sacrificed, but the need to be the one who is right has got to go.
Jeff Dollar has written a book that I think will help anyone who serves in a leadership role. Speaking from personal experience and showing us what and how to change, Jeff is both humorous and inspirational. He is a successful leader who invites you on a personal journey of growing from the inside out. Im happy to introduce to you Letting Go of the Need to Be Right, and I highly recommend it to you! Get out your pen, paper, highlighter, favorite beverage, and something to dry your eyes with because it is a hilarious adventure!
President of Loving On Purpose Life Academy
Author of Keep Your Love On, Powerful & Free and Business of Honor