If you want an organization to grow you must develop leaders. Success or failure of an organization rises and falls on leadership. I believe it is equally true that the degree of success an organization can attain is directly proportional to its leadership potential. Those can be scary words, because it means that we must constantly be finding new leaders if we intend to continue to grow as an organization.
The goal for our church would be that we never have to say, “We can’t, because we don’t have anyone to lead that.”
Recently I shared these points with our small group leaders about replacing themselves as leaders. I dug them back out again this week, because I think we need some more leaders…again!
Here are 10 steps to replacing yourself and find new leaders
1. Catch the vision of multiplication
If you don’t believe in the system of multiplication then you aren’t as likely to participate in it. You must recognize that multiplication is a part of kingdom building. Growth in the kingdom will be greatly impacted by the numbers of leaders you develop.
2. Be intentional.
You must be intentional about finding your replacement and put energy into leadership development. Replacing yourself must become a part of your overall leadership strategy.
3. Start early.
A new leader needs time to prepare. You need to get started early in your leadership role looking for that person who might be able to take your place. With some people bent towards leading you either use them early or you will lose them from your organization as they search for a place of significance.
4. Invest in your own personal growth.
You can’t take people where you haven’t been or aren’t going. The only sure way to lead people towards spiritual maturity is to be heading there yourself. Live a life worth following.
5. Humble yourself.
Today’s generation likes honesty, so don’t be afraid to allow your weaknesses, failures and shortcomings to be the catalyst to help your organization grow. Also, don’t be threatened by others. They will bring different styles; maybe even be better than you at some things.
Take pride in finding them as potential new leaders.
6. Share responsibilities early.
The quickest way to learn something is to do it. Allow people a chance to grow under your leadership. Give them a chance to lead.
7. Identify potential.
Look for leadership qualities in people that match the character of your organization.
Here are some qualities we look for in potential leaders:
a. Concern/love for others
b. Not a complainer.
c. Teachable and open to suggestions.
d. Demonstrates a propensity to lead through an excellence in following.
f. Interest (in the system, the organization, people in the organization)
i. Positive attitude
k. People skills
8. Create an environment conducive to produce leaders.
Leaders don’t develop well under a dictatorship. If people are afraid to have an answer in your organization for fear of being “wrong” they are less likely to try to have an answer. Give people an opportunity to rise and fall. Leadership is less about managing people and more about enabling them.
Don’t use the sign up method. “Raise your hand if you want to be a leader.” That will get you a bunch of quality people! The best people are often recruited.
10. Lead for life change.
Some people will experience their greatest life change only when they are leading others.
Think about the blessings people you recruit into leadership will have in their life from serving others.
Peter Block says “Leadership is about developing leaders; not followers.” Jesus said, “Follow me”, but remember He was perfect. Even Jesus though was seeking followers who would be unleashed to be leaders. He sent the disciples out to launch the church.
Growth of any organization is directly related to its leadership potential. Who is sitting in your organization that could be a leader? Who has the skills, probably should be leading, but hasn’t stepped forward? Your God-given mission may be to move them into a leadership position.