One of the most important leadership goals is to find your voice. With all the options, theories, ideologies out there every leader must find their voice. Don't find someone else's voice - find yours!
In a world where knock-offs are celebrated be an original. Yes, leveraging other people's thoughts are necessary parts of leadership, but too many simply try to be a carbon copy of someone else. Not realizing they are a copy of someone else who is a copy of someone else. And do you know what I learned about copies of copies of copies - the quality diminishes with every copy. So, why not choose to find your voice.
Over the years I have served in some leadership capacity - for over 26 years - I have tried to be other people, duplicate their styles, and try to imitate their calling. But something clicked in me about 8 years ago - I chose to be me. And do you know what happened? My ministry, influence, and leadership started to increase! Very simply because I chose to find my voice.
DROWN OUT THE NOISE
You can find a book on every shelf in every bookstore that will tell you how to lead. It's true. But they are telling you that you should lead the way that they lead. But after 26+ years of leadership I have discovered that their unique style may not be the calling that God has called me into. Now, yes, there are universal principles, but be very cautious of authors, speakers, and leaders who say, "If you do this you will get this." Drown out the noise.
You see, leadership should be descriptive, not prescriptive. Leaders can describe what God has allowed them to do or caused them to do, but not every leader has the same destiny. One of the great leadership gurus on the planet is John Maxwell. He finds a way to describe his situation and often you will hear him say, "That worked for me, maybe it could work for you."
FIND YOUR SWEET SPOT
I have become more of me and I have been loving every minute. Now, a lot of leaders will say to me, "I would never do that." My immediate response has become, "Good." If someone tried to be me it would not be a blessing, but a burden. And the same is true if I try to replicate or duplicate.
My wife and I are completely different leaders. She releases, empowers, and trusts almost immediately. I walk in with a skeptics eye. She is more forgiving and freeing. I am more judgmental and controlling. But together we strike a good balance.
I like to be in the spotlight. She likes to be in the shadows.
I lead in the front. She leads in the crowd.
But I can't make Mary lead like me. I have learned over 20 years of marriage to allow her to flow in her gifts and callings. And do you know what I discovered - she shines bright! Why? She walks in her sweet spot.
IGNORE THE CRITICS
This is one of the most difficult things I have had to learn over the years - "Everyone is an expert in areas they have never led." My wife and I are pastors. Do you know how many people try and tell us how to do our jobs, but they have never pastored a day in their lives? It is almost every week. I used to allow it to overwhelm me. Today I don't get discouraged by it - I get more determined as a result of it. I used to respond to every critical email - now I don't even respond. In fact, I tell people if they have an issue to email email@example.com (idc = I dont care).
The moment you decide to be you every person who wants to be you will take the shots at you! Ignore them. They did not create your destiny and they can't cancel it.
That being said, we have to be able to receive criticism. But I don't take advice from people I would not want to trade places with. Oh come on, that's some good advice. Never take advice from someone you do not want to trade places with and don't receive criticism from them either. Yes, surround yourself with accountability, but accountability does not come from those below you or equal to you - it comes from those above you!
In order for you to lead well and long you have to find your voice. Be who God made you to be and watch the doors that God opens up for your life and destiny!!!
It's time to find your voice. Go get it!!!