“Lead With All Your Mind”
The mind is the seat of intellectual activity. It is what enables us to deliberate, to process, to reflect, to ponder, and to remember. The mind enables us to strategize and to make plans. It is where we find clarity and where God imparts wisdom. The mind could also be viewed as the strategic component of leadership.
Strategy is the method by which great leadership is executed. The mind enables us to take a leader’s instincts and inspiration and put them into action. Leading with our minds allows us to make wise decisions about stewarding all the resources that God has entrusted to us.
What does it mean to lead with our minds? Our minds influence our leadership because they equip us to strategize and make decisions that will guide our organizations and those we lead. Our minds enable us to learn, and it is the application of that knowledge, combined with the discernment from the spiritual dimensions, that produces wisdom.
Leading from our minds involves three key elements:
Discipline is what transforms ideas into accomplishments. Strategic leaders understand the importance of discipline, and they are dedicated to keeping themselves and the team committed to the essential elements that lead to long-term success.
Stewards are people who care for someone else’s property. They oversee, protect, and care for what is entrusted to them. As people of faith, we are accountable as stewards on behalf of two different owners: 1) God, who created it all and entrusted it to us, and 2) the organization for which we work. When we’re intentional about stewardship, we build the guidelines that equip our teams to make good, consistent decisions about how to best manage the resources of the organization.
Accountability involves leaning into others to get their best work. Respect and kindness shouldn’t be absent, but accountability should be practiced with authority and reasonable expectations. One of the great privileges of leadership is that we are able to help others accomplish feats that they didn’t think they had in them. By holding people responsible for predetermined and agreed-upon outcomes, we help them (and the organization) achieve greater things than they might have accomplished on their own.
When we lead with our minds, we inspire disciplined cultures where processes are well-defined, systems and structures are clear, and boundaries are understood. Stewardship is an important value, and it means that our staffs are trained and developed, we manage our resources effectively, and we instill confidence and inspire action. Accountability is valued rather than avoided, expectations are clear and respected, and results are aligned with the vision and direction. Leading well from our mind provides the structure for our heart, soul, and strength to flourish.
Questions for Reflection:
• What steps could you take to be a better steward of the people you lead?
• What systems or processes could you create to provide better accountability?