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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

10 Stupidest Leadership Mistakes I've Made












From Tony Morgan's blog...
  1. Hiring too fast and firing too slow. The right people don't need to be managed--they just need to be pointed in the right direction. Jim Collins said, "If the person came to tell you that he or she is leaving to pursue an exciting new opportunity, would you feel terribly disappointed or secretly relieved?" If you'd be relieved, it's time for them to go.
  2. Putting the projects before the people. Ecclesiastes 7:18 says, "The man who fears God will avoid all extremes." This is one of those areas where we need to embrace the tension between relating with people and accomplishing the mission/getting the job done.
  3. Trying to fix the problem rather than the process. It's like continuing to change diapers instead of potty-training your kids. You can either continue to react to the problem, or you can fix the process. 90% of the time it's a systems-problem rather than a people-problem.
  4. Delegating tasks instead of responsibility. I told the story of the three little pigs. "If all I've known is straw houses and I control every detail of their construction, then my leadership will never generate brick house ideas."
  5. Assuming it's always black and white. Following rules is easier than the messiness of relationships. Following rules is easier than discerning God's will. The policies or guidelines we establish should actually remove barriers and allow more freedom within our organizations. But, innovative organizations don't value the rules over the mission.
  6. Not following my gut. (...or is that the Holy Spirit?) Sometimes when I'm facing a big decision, I try to acquire more information rather than seek God's direction. When we stop listening to God, he stops talking to us. God stopped talking to Abraham for 13 years between the last verse of Genesis 16 and the first chapter of 17. And, sometimes, God requires us to take a step, in faith, before he reveals his plan. Check out Joshua 3.
  7. Dwelling on the worst case scenario. I have the spiritual gift of discernment. That can be a positive gift when God's in control of my life. When I try to take control, that "gift" turns into sin. It's called worry or anxiety. I've wasted way too much time worrying about challenges or problems that never happened. This is my biggest area of vulnerability. What's yours?
  8. Waiting until there's a problem to provide feedback. I'm encouragement-challenged. My tendency is to only speak up when expectations aren't met. That can create a culture of fear. I need to discipline myself to encourage my team. As Tom Peters has said, "Reward excellent failures. Punish mediocre successes."
  9. Staying busy. I've too often made the mistake of assuming that since I'm busy I'm adding value. It's very possible to be constantly busy and be completely ineffective. By the way, email can be the biggest trap of all. If I wanted to, I could spend every hour of every day processing email and getting absolutely nothing accomplished.
  10. Spending too much time on the details rather than the dreams. Perry showed me this one. Check out Genesis 11:31-32. Terah intended to go to Canaan. Instead he stopped in Haran. He got stuck there for 205 years. Then he died. Why? Was it disobedience? Did he lose sight of God's vision? Did he just get too comfortable? Did he settle for less than God's best? When I get too focused on responding to the urgent, I lose sight of the big picture. And, frankly, my tendency is to settle into a routine that's very comfortable but doesn't accomplish the full mission God has for my life and my ministry.
HT: tonymorganlive.com


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1 Comments:

Anonymous Tyler said...

I like (in a convicting way, number 9. I feel so ineffective sometimes and yet wonder how because I am always busy. And I always fight hard to keep from doing number 2 (oh man, that sounds funny). But I know that if the relationships on my team are healthy then the jobs will almost always be done great. I hired them because their competent, now I need to love them.

February 19, 2008 4:43 AM

 

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