5 Tips For Leading Strong Willed People (Repost)

(I’m on vacation this coming week, and so for the next couple weeks I’m posting again some of my most read posts, but also ones I think are actually helpful. These are my “favorite top posts”. Some posts had more hits, but they simply do well in the search engines. I’m actually proud of these. :) None of these were posted this year. All are older than that. Thanks for reading my blog. Feel free to share these on Twitter, and Google Plus to get them circulated. I won’t be doing much of that while I’m gone.)

Have you ever tried to lead someone who didn’t want to be led? The same children that were labeled “strong-willed” by their parents often grow up to be strong-willed adults. Perhaps you know one…perhaps you are one. (I know one personally…me!)

I believe leadership should be individualized for the needs of the follower. Read a similar post HERE. With that in mind, here are 5 tips for leading strong-willed people.

Give clear expectations – People respond best when they know what is expected of them, especially those with strong opinions of their own.

Be consistent – Strong willed people need boundaries. They will test them, but they want to know what the limits of their freedom.

Give freedom within the boundaries – Once the guidelines and expectations are established, allow followers to express themselves freely within them.

Pick your battles. – Don’t cross a strong-willed person for issues of little importance to the overall vision of the organization. If you back them in a corner…they may bite.

Respect their opinions and individualities – Strong-willed people ultimately want to be heard (as all people do), but they resist most when their voice is silenced. Learn what matters to them and give credence to their opinions.

What tips do you have for leading strong-willed people? Are you one? How do you like to be led?

For another thought on this type of leadership, click HERE.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Add video comment

Have you Subscribed via RSS yet? Don't miss a post!

6 thoughts on “5 Tips For Leading Strong Willed People (Repost)

  1. Powerful pointers there Ron :) I believe every leader first needs to be strong in order to lead people who are of similar temperament. Leadership is an art, and it's an art that can be learned. It needn't be a gift or innate attritbue, anyone who learns that art can lead. Check out Dag Heward-Mills' "Art of Leadership, 2nd Ed". It'll take your leadership art higher! Be blessed! :)

  2. This is good stuff. I can be strongwilled, so I tend to not enjoy leading those who are similar to me in that way. One tip I would offer in addition is to always remember that they are NOT the enemy! Especially in the church world of leadership. I often remind myself that we really are all on the same team. They are not the enemy…it just feels like it occasionally.

  3. I agree, leadership does need to be individualized. One struggle I've seen involves those situations when a follower is in crisis mode. You never know if they are the type that wants you to initiate in helping them or if they prefer you stand back and wait for them to ask for help. Strong-willed seem more like the "wait for me" type. Just my experience. :)