A 5-day journey to living from your priorities

It’s easy to spend our day reacting to what comes at us. What if you could be proactive, intentionally making decisions based on your priorities? It is possible!

Our five-day short course guides you through the process of identifying your life priorities and scaling them day to everyday decisions. You’ll learn how to establish a rhythm to build good habits and grow a team that will be with you in the journey.

Cultivation is often indirect. We are working to create an environment that allows, invites, and stimulates growth. It is our responsibility, as leaders, to focus on the environment and the culture of our team.

My Leadership Experience

One year as my son and I planted jalapeños; we put them too close together. This limited how large they could grow and how much fruit they could sustain.

The same year my team was going from focusing on one campus to two campuses. It requires more significant leadership from some of the staff on my team. I was encouraged to see them growing into their new roles and responsibilities.

At the same time, I was partnering with a church to grow from one fellowship with students at three schools into three fellowships, each at their school. The goal was to do this in a way that allows it to further multiply into the different domains of each campus, eventually saturating the entire campus.

Space is needed for leadership to grow, and the environment will influence how we give space.

The main issue was leadership capacity. There weren’t enough leaders.

I needed students who would lead and multiply their leadership. What I needed to consider was what environment would best cultivate leaders to grow. I had many questions. Do they have the resources they need? Do they have direction? Understanding? Do they have space to lead? Have I given them enough time?

Space to lead

In both examples, space was a critical issue, which I would like to focus on in this post. Space is needed for leaders to grow.

Leaders tend to wait until a potential leader is fully ready before they begin letting them lead. However, we need to get out of the way, allowing the leader to grow into the space created. As I moved out of some of the leadership roles at one of our campuses, I let other staff grow into those roles.

Which is more important, the project or the developing leader?

As a leader, it's critical to evaluate if you are giving space for new leaders to rise. Does the culture of your team revolve around you and your decisions? Or does the team feel empowered to make decisions and even mistakes?

Environment

Consider if the environment you're cultivating leaders in possesses these characteristics:

  1. Allows
  2. Invites
  3. Stimulates

Allows

Is there enough space to allow others to lead? What commonly stands in the way of someone stepping into leadership? Usually, it’s the current leader.

If that’s the case, then I must ask, “Am I willing to get out of the way? Am I willing to let someone fail? Even fail with something important?” Answering this leads to a secondary question, “Which is more important, the project or the developing leader?” A leader will complete successful projects many times over, but a successful project doesn't necessarily multiply leadership.

What commonly stands in the way of someone stepping into leadership? Usually, it’s the current leader.

In 2019 I took a gap-mpnth to renew and refocus. My absence provided space for the leaders I was cultivating to take full ownership of their roles and responsibilities. Consider if there are opportunities in your context to step back and allow new leaders to become more established.

Does life ever feel like a hack rather than on purpose?

You want your life to have meaning and impact. Daily life is made up of the spaces we gather and the moments we interact with one another.

What if your spaces, moments, and interactions not only felt natural and intuitive but also aligned with your priorities and positively impacted those around you?

Discover your Everyday Design so you can focus on what’s important.

Invites

Would others want your job? Are you leading in a way that others would have the desire or courage to do it? I’m not saying falsely make it look easy or glorious, but how often do you see a leader exhausted, stressed, and spent? Are you inspired to be like them? What about someone who can be joyful in uncertainty or failure? Does your leadership inspire others?

Inspiration is just the first step; you also have to invite people. Your invitation needs to be clear and compelling. Are they being called to something clear and specific? Do both you and they know what you’re challenging them to do? If asked about their responsibilities, would your answer and their answer be the same? I've seen a lack of clarity prevent many young leaders from having the courage to truly step out and lead. Don't let this happen to your team.

Stimulates

When you initially plant or transplant a plant, you want to fertilize it well. If you want growth, the necessary resources need to be readily available. Do you know which resources your new leaders need?

Stimulation can come from many sources. It could be a tool to use or a guide to follow. It could be a person with experience whom someone could watch or seek counsel. I’ve even found biographies helpful in this way. Maybe it’s training to help prepare this new leader.

Something beneficial to me was to have a mentor available to process what I was thinking or experiencing. They didn’t have to have all the answers; being available was huge. Be creative and explore what resources could help those you’re inviting to leadership. Many of them may come from outside your team or your areas of expertise.

Creating the right environment is both an art and a science. We don’t grow in a vacuum. Our environment has a significant impact on our growth as leaders. We need to be intentional to allow enough space, invite others into that space, and provide what is necessary to grow.

Reflection Questions:

  1. Am I willing to give responsibilities (even important ones) away and allow others to own them?
  2. Is my role something others would want?
  3. Am I inviting them to own parts of it?
  4. Have I provided the needed resources to stimulate this new leader’s growth?

Not sure how to cultivate this kind of environment for growth? Explore the roles of a leader who cultivates leaders; they include providing, protecting, pruning, waiting, resting and restarting.

A 5-day journey to living from your priorities

It’s easy to spend our day reacting to what comes at us. What if you could be proactive, intentionally making decisions based on your priorities? It is possible!

Our five-day short course guides you through the process of identifying your life priorities and scaling them day to everyday decisions. You’ll learn how to establish a rhythm to build good habits and grow a team that will be with you in the journey.

A GUIDE TO GROWING SERVANT LEADERS

This post is part of my cultivating servant leaders guide where I share lessons learned from 20 years of leading and helping other leaders grow. You can explore other guides at everyday.design or download the eBook.

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