Have you ever asked the question, “What do real leaders do?’ What is the character of a strong leader? Can a leader that has character be defined?
I came across a book several years ago by George Barna entitled Leaders on Leadership. As I read this book, I discovered an interesting chapter entitled “What Leaders Do” by Kenneth Gangel. In this chapter, Gangel expresses that leadership is an exercise of one’s spiritual gifts and character under the call of God to serve certain groups of people. His definition of a real leader is easy to understand. By asking the simple question, “What do leaders do?” Gangel points out 6 primary characteristics and facts about a strong leader.
1. Leaders Relate
A real leader goes beyond management and administration. The healthy leader is one who builds relationships with those he or she aims to lead. A productive leader is one who places high value on human resources. Property, machines, material resources and even money do not mean as much as the people who make up the organization. The character of strong leader is developed by how one relates and understands people.
2. Leaders Organize
As a strong leader works to develop his team, honesty, vision, and inspiration rank very high while competence and intelligence are seen as less important. To be well organized a leader must be able to communicate with those he or she attempts to lead. A well-organized leader is one who sets goals for themselves and for the task they have been called to carry out. Without organization it is difficult to think through what you’re trying to do, however, being organized without being honest, direct and personal will achieve little.
3. Leaders Achieve
For a leader to achieve success in the organization in which they lead Kenneth Gangel points out that there are four tasks that every leader faces:
- to fulfill the goals of the organization
- to provide for innovation
- to involve other people
- to sustain personnel morale
4. Leaders Think
If one person in the organization does not recognize the goals and objectives of the team, it will be impossible to carry out the task. Setting clear goals will help move any team forward. Ineffective decision making is created by
- Lack of clear-cut objectives
- Insecurity of position or authority
- Lack of information
Healthy critical thinking and decision making takes place when every member of the team is allowed and encouraged to express themselves. Good leaders are thinkers but so are all the members of a healthy team.
5. Leaders Envision
What is the mission and vision of our team? A mission is a brief statement that identifies why an organization exists and what it expects to do on earth. Vision, however, describes how that team will design its future to achieve its mission. A vision grows out the mission statement.
6. Leaders Endure
A good strong leader is someone who sticks to the task. There will be ups and downs, successes and failures, peace and conflict, but a productive leader remains faithful to the task.
Leaders Make Good Things Happen
It is impossible to see anything happen without the investment of a good leader. Leadership is the catalyst for productive teamwork. A healthy environment with a committed leader will see great things take place. So here again are the 6 key facts, according to Kenneth Gangel, for a leader to see success: