Leadership books sometimes make leadership too complex. Good leadership principles, like any other principles should be easy to digest and understand. With that in mind I have distilled my thoughts on what a good leader is, into seven things that all leaders need to have.

  1. Character. This is a given, if a leader does not have character then they can’t be a leader. If they aren’t people of respect, then you can’t respect them and if you can’t respect them you won’t follow them (1 Timothy 3).
  2. Courage. Just like Jesus we need to have courage to make hard calls, courage to say hard things in love when we need to, and courage to go forward when it is hard.
  3. Passion. We need a passion that springs from the gospel. We know that we are doing the most important work in the world and therefore we should have passion for the people that we minister to and passion for the truth of the gospel itself.
  4. Love. Just as Jesus loved and Paul loved we need to love our people. This is hard as some of the people we serve are quite hard to love. But we need to remember that God loved us even when we were sinners and he demonstrated that love on the cross. This message gives us the energy to love those who are tough to love. 
  5. Energy. Leaders need to have an energy about them that is infectious. They need great energy to do all the things they need to do. Energy is crucial in ministry because ministry is a draining work.
  6. The ability to energize. Our people look to us for inspiration and encouragement and so we need to be able to energize by giving them encouragement and feedback. We also energize them by following them up and giving feedback all the time. But we follow up and give feedback to encourage and spur on, more than to rebuke and correct.
  7. The ability to execute. Leaders need to get things done and this is true of leaders in the church. As church leaders, we need to be able to get things done. We need to be organised and plan things. Most of all, we need to do what we say we will do.

Would you add anything to this list?


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