7 Requirements to Be a Leader Today

To be a leader today requires more than knowledge…

Especially today.

Here are 7 requirements to be a great leader today:

You have to be adaptable – Things change fast these days. Real fast. You must lead a team that responds accordingly.

You have to be moldable – You must personally change fast too…or you’ll be left behind. (This doesn’t mean you have to change your values, beliefs or convictions. In fact, that will work against you these days. People would rather be on your team and disagree with you some…difference of opinion is more acceptable today…than for people to think you are whimsical in what you claim to believe. This is actually one culture change that can be a benefit for the Christian leader.)

You have to embrace a team approach – There are no Lone Rangers today. (By the way…he wasn’t alone either. If I had a helper like Tonto and a horse like Silver…I’d have myself a winning team.)

You have to consider social responsibility – People want their individual work to make a difference. They also want the place where they spend their time, whether paid or volunteer, to make a difference.

You have to think bigger than today – Tomorrow is coming quicker than ever before and people are looking for leaders who can provide competent direction and consistent encouragement.

You have to be willing to serve others– People will no longer follow an autocratic leader. They are less loyal than ever. If you want to remain their leader, you must prove you care for them personally. Trust is more important than having all the answers.

You have to allow others to receive credit and assume authority – It’s what attracts leaders to your team these days. They want to feel they are playing a part in the team’s success.

It’s what’s required in leadership today. I realize this brings some unique challenges for spiritual leaders. We have a message and faith that is unwavering…and needs to stay that way. I certainly don’t intend to change my message. As Christian leaders, though, we must understand the context of culture in which we find ourselves. The way we lead, motivate and recruit people has changed. If we don’t recognize that, we will be less successful in accomplishing our God-given assignments.

Thankfully, and I know I need this…where we are weak…He is strong.

What would you add?

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13 thoughts on “7 Requirements to Be a Leader Today

  1. Some add-ons:
    ~ You have to begin with humility
    ~ You have to love people
    ~ You have to be inclusive
    ~ You have to be not envious of others
    ~ You have to value good character

    But, unfortunately we find/ encounter some pitfalls in leadership:
    – Politicizing
    – Playing favorites
    – Deception
    – Hypocrisy

  2. Great list Ron! I especially like #7… Leadership in general includes equipping people and bringing out their best. When applied to the church, I'm reminded of Ephesians 4 and Paul's treatise on gifts being used to build up the Body.

  3. Great post, Ron! A key to leadership is avoiding complacency. Growth as a leader never stops. My favorite quote is a leader reads and a reader leads. As a leader I try to maintain a servant's heart in everything I do.

  4. Hey, Ron. Great post! BTW, I think that to be a successful leader today you have to have the ability to provide direction, and with direction, show progress in the work. It is hard to keep people focused without direction, and it is difficult to establish direction when no one can see anything happening. Leaders should be able to remind those under them where they have come from, where they are, and where they are going, but even so, how to get there! And I'm talking about REAL changes that have benefited the church/organization, not – "Hey, everyone said they wanted coffee two years ago, and we got a complimentary coffee maker!" Big deal! People need to see where they have come from to where they are with the hope of future spiritual progress through the grace of God upon your leadership. Then, people will become loyal, devoted, and the work becomes their own as well.