Below are my notes from the Global Leadership Summit 2014. This is Day 1 – and I plan to post more notes tomorrow!
Hard Fought Leadership Lessons by Bill Hybels
Every leadership decision you make has a direct impact on the spirit and psyche of those you lead.
We can become obsessed with the thrill of leadership.
Leaders with the highest level of passion have the lowest level of awareness of the spirit he or she has been assembled to lead.
When you look at the team through the “they don’t care” eyes – the leader can begin to think they are either too passionate or that they shouldn’t care quite as much. None of this is discussed openly, but everyone starts to sniff it and sense it.
Grunts feel expendable, not valuable. God values people over everything. Hybels saw this in his culture at Willow Creek. He repented and worked hard to change the culture. It’s one of his highlights of being a leader.
What Practical Steps Are Needed to Change the Culture
1) Use an outside firm to run an engagement survey. “The Best Christian Workplace”
2) Executive Team to own the turnaround. It couldn’t have been delegated to the HR department. Your culture will only ever be as healthy as the senior leader wants it to be.
3) Get real serious about training all people who manage people. Not everyone can manage people. People join organizations, they leave managers.
4) Increase the level of candor in performance reviews. Every worker secretly wants to know how they are doing. “Do you notice my work? Am I adding value in any way?” It is cruel and unusual punishment to not give feedback. The kindest form of management is the truth.
3 words: Start, Stop, Continue.
3 Ms at Willow Creak:
Move: Start meeting with what you are talking about, what you are trying to move ahead.
Modify – change conversation to how to modify.
Motivate people before meeting ends. Thank, bless, and inspire. Create an environment of inspiration.
– Specificity is so important in performance reviews and they get fired up to get better. Everyone wins when a leader gets better.
5) Ruthless commitment to relational conflict, regardless of how hard it is. “Reconcile” book (recommended book): “What if we all looked at conflict as the opportunity to strengthen a relationship, rather than the ruin.” This encourages us to move toward people with conflict. This could result in deeper level of trust when we lean into it.
In the average Christian organization, only 54% of the employees are truly engaged in their work. In the US corporate world, only 30% are excited about their role and engaged. Internationally, the rate is 15%.
81% at Willow are engaged. Heartbreaking for Hybels that 19% are not there.
Another hard-fought leadership lesson:
True or False Great leadership is by definition relentlessly developmental.
Every leader knows this is true – we must be developing. But where there are thick clouds of confusion is in the HOW. Then they give up on leadership development and feel guilty about it.
5 Top Ways to Develop Leaders:
1) Put them in high challenging roles
2) Assign them to a short-term task force
– We don’t buy cars before we test drive. The task force must:
A) Success or failure must
B) The emerging leader must take full authority
D) Must have pressure
E) End product must be evaluated by a senior leader.
3) Offer real time feedback
4) Provide coaching/mentoring
5) Offer them classroom seminars
His Dad forced him to be resourceful. This greatly influenced his life.
You must figure out how to help someone know what to do when they don’t know what to do. Do they quit? Dig in? Collaborate? And figure it out?
No senior leader can be ready for everything coming their way. So learning agility is so important.
2 tasks for executive pastor “application”: In charge of budgeting process for one season. Completed building project.
When is the last time you assigned someone to a pass/fail test? Look at the young people.
3rd Hard-Fought Leadership Lesson:
John 10 – Two shepherds.
Higherling types – they don’t care about your sheep. Short-term. If a predator threatens, this one will run to safety.
Owner types – this kind of shepherd cares. Long term view. If a predator threatens, this shepherd will lay down their life for the well-being of the sheep.
We as leaders need to master to discern between these two.
Find and develop leaders with a legacy mindset.
Average tenure for a Fortune 500 CEO is 4 years.
Who are the legacy leaders around you?
– Legacy leaders ride out rough patches.
– Legacy leaders are working through tough economic times.
– Legacy leaders are fueled to please the God they love. They want to leave something beautiful behind. Ex/ Nelson Mandela, Warden Boro Cain.
Forgiven much. Worship much.
We’re all given a birth and end date. But we all have a lot of space in that “dash” between the two. We can be a legacy leader. You don’t drift into being a legacy leader.
Have you given any real thought to the legacy you’ll leave? What if we shifted into legacy gear?
James 1:12 – blessed are those who endure trials.
The grander the vision, the greater the price tag.
The greatest vision ever: Jesus to redeem the sins of humanity and it cost him his life.
Legacy leaders have to develop endurance strategies to keep them in the game over the long haul.
It’s hard to hear God at Mach 2 speed. Solitude breaks are in his schedule.
If you’re feeling burnt out, humble yourself and call for help. This rough patch will require extra assistance.
Carly Fiorina – CEO of Hewlett Packard/Several Non-Profits
Human Potential & Leadership Definition
Most important lesson: What you are is God’s gift to you, what you do is your gift to God.
We have more potential than we realize. Human potential is limitless and amazing.
We are often afraid to take the leap. Sometimes people don’t have the tools, training, education, or opportunity. Sometimes people lose faith – in themselves, others, or even God.
There are things that crush potential. Bureaucracy crushes potential – rules based, hierarchal system. Bureaucracy always implode on themselves. They worry about all the things inside rather than focusing on the outside customer.
If human potential is the only limitless resource that can solve problems, what unlocks it?
The highest calling of leadership is to unlock the potential in others.
A leader tries to change the position. Leaders change the order of things.
Ex/ MLK Jr. – had a dream of “there” that was so different than where he was. Started by unlocking the potential in many nobodies.
What do leaders do?
– A great speech is not leadership. It is important in our words, but they are not enough.
Strategy/Goals/Vision – Where are we going? Why are we going there? How are we going there?
– The more specific the goal and vision, the better. Where are we now? Where do we want to be (specifically)?
– Then measuring that is crucial.
– How are we going to get things done? Who is the leader? What kind of processes do we need in place?
– Problem: This doesn’t match the strategy/goals/vision
– Structure always has to follow strategy
Metrics/Results – How are we going to measure progress? How do we reward success? What counts as progress?
What gets measured, gets done.
Culture Behavior – Culture means “what’s it like to work around here.” This boils down to behavior. People will listen to the talk for a while. Then they start walking the walk. Watching the walk – seeing what the walk is like. Actions speak louder than words.
The leader sets the tone and models the behavior. Fancy value statements are nice, but people look around to know how to act.
20/20 Rule – When people embark on a leadership journey, 20% of the people in an organization are change warriors. They are people who get it right away. Harness those warriors.
There’s another 20% – “Hell no I won’t go!” – They have to be identified too. They are the source of resistance. That leaves 60% of the people – they are skeptics and they wait to see if it works. Success never happens unless the 60% are moved. When 80% are engaged, then forward momentum is possible.
Everyone has more potential than they realize. Everyone has the capacity to lead. Leaders are made not born.
True leadership requires faith. It’s not about the absence of doubt. A love of God makes leadership easier. Faith gives us the gift of humility. True leadership requires we understand it is not about us. It is about others. Faith gives us empathy. “I could be in the spot!” Faith gives us optimism. That people will rise to the occasion. Faith in others is so important.
Leadership is a choice. Choose to change the order of things. Choose the joy of unlocking the potential in others.
Jeffrey Immelt – CEO of GE: Positioning Your Organization for the Future
Your peers determine how far you can go. Be a giver, not a taker. Horizontal strength keeps institutions together and moving forward.
Be around a crisis if you can. That’s where your leadership shows and shines.
The best leaders go forward.
Leadership ideas that don’t change: Commitment to integrity, performance, change. But they also invest 1 billion dollars into it.
What about when the people you invest in leave? Don’t let them be in fear. You want them to be on fire.
What do you really love in someone? Or what do you want to get rid of in someone? Willingness to stand apart. Willingness to buck the system. You can’t run a big company without rules, but people who drive change and question authority.
Use authority wisely. Say “this is the way it is because this is the decision I’m making.” Don’t overuse this, but use it when it is needed (after discussion).
We’re all in the business of self-confidence. Give them feedback to help make them confident.
Susan Cain: Quiet: Challenging the Quiet Ideal
– 33-50% of people are introverted
– We must harness the power of introverts and extroverts
– At the end of 2 hours at a party, do you want more or are you really tired and want to be home? This is just a metaphor for what is going on inside our bodies.
Rethinking innovation and idea sharing.
Focus on service, not on networking.
Restore quiet to your culture.
Spend time reflecting on how to empower and equip those who are introverts to be able to use all their talents the best way possible.
Bryan Loritts: Instigating Change Through Personal Sacrifice
Story of William Wilberforce abolishing slavery:
William Wilberforce at 21 – runs for Parliament and wins.
At 25, Wilberforce understands the train wreck of the Gospel and puts his trust in Christ.
1807 – Wilberforce helps to abolish slave trade
1833 – slavery is abolished
Our leadership must be more than the things that will perish.
Jesus doesn’t say, “Do good things and you will get in.” His word: Fruit.
I will never accomplish enough good things, but we must look at our fruit.
At 19 years old, he decided he could live off of 28 pounds. That year he made 30 pounds and gave away two. Later in life he made over 1500 pounds and gave away 1482 pounds.
How much is enough? How much is enough houses? Purses? Golf clubs?
Our churches need to model this.
What is joy? Helping to pay someone’s medical bills. That’s joy.
Patrick Lencioni – The 3 Most Dangerous Mistake Leaders Make
1) Becoming a Leader for the Wrong Reason
Why do we become a leader in the first place? Notoriety? Fame? Power? Money?
Real reason we should pursue leadership:
To sacrifice yourself for the well-being of others, even when they don’t know if there will be any return on investment.
The only real payoff for leadership is eternal.
2) Failing to embrace vulnerability
“You have a hard job, I don’t know how you do it.” – Good opening to a challenge
“This is the part of my job that is extra hard for me.” -what we as pastors should say
3) Making leadership too important
Do the people closest to you feel like you place too much importance on work/leadership (as opposed to family)?
A legacy leader does not hope that the people standing by his bedside will be the people he managed, but his/her family.
Pride- the antidote is humility. Jesus gave us the ultimate example and showed us what true leadership is: humility.