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Paul sent his young friend Timothy a powerful and insightful statement on leadership. He begins the section reassuring Timothy of the importance and certainty of what he is about to say with the statement, “This is a trustworthy saying”.

I use this phrase as a title only – not to claim that my thoughts on leadership are the end-all of this important discussion. However, the more we align our perceptions of leadership (or any other topic) with the revelation of scripture, the closer we will all be to, “a trustworthy saying”.     - Dan

A leader with: 1) significant capacity, 2) the character and competence to foster followers’ trust, and 3) a compelling vision still needs to motivate others to join him or her in the quest to see the vision become reality.  Motivation is the fourth and final irreducible ingredient of leadership.  Embodiment, communication, enthusiasm and power are all tools that leaders use to motivate followers. 

A leader must embody the vision if he or she hopes to inspire and motive others to follow.  A leader’s behavior, attitudes and espoused values must be congruent with the vision that he or s...

I’m not much of a scientist, but as I understand the theory of vaccinations, the goal is to give a person a weak, small or dead sample of an illness to keep them from getting a powerful, full-blown or even deadly form of the disease. Leadership can be like this. Leaders too often vaccinate people around them against their cause and do not “infect” them with the authentic challenge of change and achievement.    

Why is this? Because the leader does not have the real “disease.” If an ineffective leader is not a carrier of the vision or values of the organization, then he or she is...

People tend to be motivated by four basic forces: community, conquest, change and crisis.  Wise leaders learn to employ different forces at appropriate times and vary their motivational styles depending upon the circumstances.  Combining several of these can generate a powerful force as leaders rally followers to achieve a significant and worthy vision.  

Community - Many people are motivated by their commitment to the group.  They strive to be accepted or give freely of themselves for the common good.  In the best cases, people show their altruism and desire to help others.  Man...

Nothing engages followers like enthusiasm. And nothing kills followers’ zeal like leader lethargy. A leader who is genuinely excited and actively engaged in his or her work will inspire and motivate followers. Enthusiasm is the magnet that attracts and holds followers. The lack of a leader’s enthusiasm devalues the vision and signals to the followers that the cause is really not that significant. 

A vision should engage not only a leader’s intellect and will, but also his or her emotions. It is not enough for the mind of a leader to conceive a plan and the actions of a leader to implement the p...

All leaders possess some form of power. Using power effectively is one of the critical factors in developing into a significant leader.  Leaders who learn when and how to use power can maximize their effectiveness. Strong leaders understand and use power wisely. They do not abuse power, but neither do they fear employing the power that is rightfully theirs.

The inappropriate use of power changes leaders into tyrants, but disuse of power leaves a leader impotent and ineffective. High capacity leaders are aware of the power available to them and judiciously apply it to maximize their effectivenes...

For a leader, communication is much more than the simple transfer of information. Leaders communicate to generate passion, focus attention, and encourage wavering followers. Good leaders communicate well because they have a clear understanding of the vision and are passionate about pursuing their dream for a better future. 

Communication allows their focused commitment and zeal to make a difference and overflows into the lives of others. But not all leaders use the same communication style; every leader has his or her own way of informing and inspiring their followers. Some are excellent speake...

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