Your leadership is fragile, it is a gift from your followers. Leaders earn the respect of their followers daily. They are expected to lead honestly with positive character traits, setting an example of personal and corporate values with care and consistency.
“…when it comes to the people who are responsible for making … organizations healthy, it’s all about character. Yes, character.” (Irwin & Lencioni, 2012)
Look at the leaders you identify with. Think about your mentors. Remember those who influence you. Would you like to mirror their style? How do the leaders you emulate earn and maintain your respect? Do they do it through autocratic, authoritative decision making? Do they earn your respect by criticism, put-downs and silo thinking? Do they wield authority or use the organizational big stick? I think not.
The leaders you respect, most likely demonstrate a servant leadership style of caring, love and respect. They earn your respect by their words and actions. Their character is positive, uplifting and they demonstrate a personal life of integrity. They earn your respect by setting a positive example. Their followers respect and trust their consistency of action and lifestyle.
The leadership characteristics of Nehemiah included, prayer, courage, and concern for others, positive realistic decisions, calmness, a positive administrator, a persevering leader and positivity in the face of threats. Nehemiah was “a leader who won and held the full confidence of his followers” (Sanders, 2007).
As a leader, we serve by earning the care and respect of our followers daily.
Yours in Service
Laurie D. Kennedy
Biblical Leadership Coach