I was reminded recently of the tremendous weight and responsibility we carry as leaders. As a leader, when I walk into a situation I have to remember that the difference between a good meeting and a great meeting (a bad conversation or a great conversation; an ok evening with the family or a fun and refreshing one; the list goes on) rests squarely on my shoulders. The greatest injuries to leadership are caused by the deference of responsibility. “Someone else will take care of it” is a leadership killer.
Much of what I do involves overseeing events at church in many difference areas. They all require planning in advance, rehearsals, more rehearsals, and then the actual execution of the event (“performance,” “day-of,” “services,” whatever you want to say). At every stage of development, there are obstacles that must be overcome in order to ensure that I’m doing everything in my power to make the service the best it can be. At each stage I have to remember that if I’m the leader, the win is my responsibility. I picture this like hurdles on a track. I can’t skip any or go around. Every single one requires all of my effort to get over. One trip can ruin the whole race.
Leadership is so simple and I think that’s what makes it so difficult. It is saying out loud the things that everyone needs to hear. It is speaking the things that you may assume everyone already knows but they need to hear you say it to them in a way that is clear and makes sense. Leadership is being in the drivers seat. Leadership is action taking responsibility.
When you care for people and you let them know, it sets you apart from the crowd. So often great leadership is simply the ability to articulate the obvious and move people toward a vision or goal. So wherever your sphere of influence is, buckle up, speak up, and keep moving forward.