Dan Reiland The Pastor's Coach – Developing Church Leaders

Category / Relationships

Your attitude is one of the single most defining attributes of your leadership.

I’ve coached some very gifted leaders. Their natural talent and skill were through the roof, but their attitude got them in trouble and hurt their leadership and their church. In a couple of cases, it took them out.

An attitude is an inward feeling expressed by outward behavior. It’s a frame of mind or disposition. That’s why an attitude can be seen without a word being said. You notice that frown of disapproval on someone’s face in a meeting, or a pout from the sulker who didn’t get their way, or the glare of an unhappy cynic. A negative attitude is easy to spot.

The difference between a positive attitude and a negative attitude can make or break your ministry.

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One of the highest compliments you can receive is to hear someone say, “I trust you.”

Don’t take that lightly. Trust takes time to earn but can be lost quickly.

As a leader, trust is usually extended to you upfront. It’s “on loan,” so to speak, until proven untrustworthy.

However, it’s not uncommon for good leaders to be caught by surprise when they are not trusted quite as fully as they thought they were.

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As a church leader, I’m confident you love and care about people, but If you have been leading for more than one week, you have encountered a difficult person or two.

Recently a wonderful volunteer on the hospitality team told me that someone just left because of the coffee. The unhappy attendee said, “This coffee tastes like dirt.” He said it was weak and insisted that we do something about it. It didn’t matter that it was free. (Free is not an excuse for lousy coffee, but thousands of people seem to like it.) The volunteer offered the Starbucks brand, but the attendee was upset that it wasn’t free.

We all can be difficult or have a bad day, but there are chronic personalities that require intentional effort, maturity, and specific skill to lead.

As leaders we are called to love everyone, Jesus made that clear in John 13:34-35, but that does not mean we are to consistently tolerate behavior that harms the people and mission of the church.

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It’s speed and pressure that can cause you to lose sight of some of the basics that are vital to the sustainability of your leadership. It might be in the church, in your home, or maybe in a business venture.

As leaders, we usually talk about things like vision, strategy, staffing, etc., and they are incredibly important. But you and I can blow it, even with the best vision and strategy, if we mess up on the “simple” stuff – the things that are considered common sense.

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