Reimagine The Role Of Leaders
The current climate presents an existential challenge for many leaders. The church has not been exempted this time. In fact, in some ways, we have been impacted to a higher degree as we have watched the landscape of organizations, including churches, dynamically change. Agility in leadership is a necessary skill, now more than ever.
Consequently, most have needed to change models and adapt the way they communicate, direct (we could add control) – and LEAD to survive. While visionary leaders, who primarily look at the big picture are still essential, the reality is that much of what is being executed now is occurring organically. Decision-making and change are happening on the ground and in real-time.
What is required in this paradigm cultural shift? One of the biggest challenges will be to transform and reimagine the role of leaders. For some, it will no longer be acceptable to simply cast vision and let others run.
I recently read a book for academic purposes and was impacted by this statement - "the temptation to lead as a chess master, controlling each move of the organization, must give way to an approach as a gardener, enabling rather than directing."[i]
As I further pondered that statement, this is what began to unfold about leadership NOW:
This time is calling for leaders who are able to both cast vision AND clear the path. Navigating tumultuous changing conditions requires something different than navigating peaceful waters. Vision and fortitude are required. Not just to get through where we are, but also to push through to where we are headed. We have not been this way before. We should not discard what we know, but we also cannot be afraid to do things differently, hearing and learning as we go. Leaders must be willing to chart a new course, go a different way, and YES, violate the paradigm.
There is a need for synergistic leadership. The demand is for the seasoned and the novice, the traditional and the revolutionary, and those with knowledge as well as those with strength, to work together. Both are needed, AND both must be willing to adapt.
[i] McChrysal, S. G. (2015). Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World. New York: Penguin Publishing Group.