Boundless Global | Leadership
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In part one of this series we explored the misconception concerning the famous “Learning the Hard Way” philosophy, which espouses that hard work equates true leadership.


I submit to you that while “Learning the Hard Way” is part of great leadership it does not necessarily propel you to become a great leader. That is something only “Doing it the Right Way” can do. This philosophy subscribes to the idea that you can attain your goals with an effective process, that is informed by an overarching purpose.


A great leader is consumed by the thought of leaving a worthwhile legacy in all that is developed. And the best way to do so is the Right Way with intentionality and purpose in all we do. This, in my opinion, is the best way to cement any and all lessons learned.


But how would this solidify and cement all lessons learned?


I thought you’d never ask!! Here are three tools to Doing it the Right Way:


1-      Assess: Any time a leader sets out to try something new (that will improve the status quo) he/she must first consider the importance of assessing the current climate of the organization and the community it seeks to serve. A true assessment of how things are going will mitigate many unnecessary risks that are not well though out.


2-    Diagnose: Once you have a clear grasp of where the Organization and/or Ministry team (and the community you serve) are at, then you’ll be able to develop a plan that will best serve who you’re called to bless.


3-      Implement: This is the part where you bless your Organization and/or Ministry team and the community by putting the plan into effect to make it happen.


Here’s a small disclaimer, following these three steps does not guarantee that you’ll “Do it the Right Way” 100% of the time. But it will increase your chances to know what went wrong since your process is much more intentional than that of just throwing stuff on the wall, learning the hard way!

It’s been said that correlation does not necessarily equate causation, BUT here’s the thing… when  there seems to be a link between the two we should look into it.


Having helped start businesses and served in ministry for over twenty years I have learned a great many deal of lessons… the hard way. I know this is true of 90% of Ministers and Entrepreneurs, who’ve learned many lessons the hard way. I will admit that as I’ve grown older, and matured a tad more, I’ve come to see the danger of wearing the “I’ve learned the hard way” badge as an indicator of true leadership.

There is no necessary correlation between the “I learned the hard way” philosophy being a flawless indicator of it causing “Good Leadership.” We can say that there seems to be a link between the two, but the fact that there is a link can neither confirm and/or guarantee that this correlation is incontrovertible proof of causation.


As a consultant who has ministered in multi-cultural scenarios, helping assess the current state of many ministries and organizations, I have seen this mindset to be prevalent. Many leaders celebrate, promote and look up to people who have learned the hard way, and for the record there is nothing inherently wrong with respecting the school of hard knocks.


So what’s the issue?


My contention is that the idea that successful leadership is brought about by learning things the hard way may be a tad off. I would argue that “Doing it the Right Way” (which will increase the chance of successful ministry in the long run) is the golden link between correlation and cause and in fact the true reason for successful leadership, not “Learning the Hard Way”.


What’s the difference?????  The difference is simple


The “Learning The Hard Way” philosophy: This philosophy tends to be committed to Trial and Error. It basically lives and dies by saying “What’s in between Correlation and Causation is a lot of HARD WORK.” In other words if I work hard enough and come up with enough good ideas… then this ministry / organization thing will work.  While this is not a bad thing, the problem tends to be that people set out to try their hand at ministry or starting up something new by doing something that may sound like a good idea with no specific end in mind other than “let’s see if it works” or “God will see it through” mindset. This doesn’t usually yield lasting results because there is no greater purpose, mission or vision attached to what is being done.


The “Doing it the Right Way” philosophyThis philosophy subscribe to the idea that you can attain your goals with an effective process that is informed by an overarching purpose. This philosophy lives and dies by saying “What’s in between Correlation and Causation is a commitment to a WELL-INFORMED (clear) purpose.”


In our next blog I’ll give you three tools that I have successfully used to help many organizations and ministries “Do it the Right Way”.

Full definition of Confrontation according to Merriam-Webster: the act of confronting :  the state of being confronted: as

a :  a face-to-face meeting

b :  the clashing of forces or ideas :  conflict

c :  comparison <the flashbacks bring into meaningful confrontation present and past, near and far — R. J. Clements>


Many leaders would rather die than consider the prospect of confronting anything at all. In the corporate world it’s kind of hard to not be confronted, because when you work for a company there is an understanding of your role as a contributing producer to the organizations growth. Nonetheless confrontation tends to be a bit elusive in ministry.


I’ve served in quite a few ministries, and observed many others, and let’s just say confrontation is something I have not seen much of through the years. I have seen leaders cover up and dismiss issues that should be confronted under the guise of phrases like:


“Don’t worry God has a plan”, “Just pray for them, these attacks will not prevail” “Wait on the Lord” or one of my  personal favorites is when leaders ignore clear patterns that should be confronted.


I have also seen extreme measures being utilized by leaders to thwart healthy confrontation such as


“God said so and that’s it”, “It may not make much sense at this time but God will make it clear”, “We will not discuss this any longer.”


The implication of these statements can leave a well-meaning individual feeling like they are of little faith or disobedient to God. Confrontation tends to be feared by many because of lingering insecurities and/or well entrenched patterns of manipulation.


Please note that all of the aforementioned sayings are in and of themselves valid. I believe they are all correct… in the right context. When it comes to confronting issues (that are clearly unethical, immoral and of sincere concern) the rule of thumb should always be… Confront.


The solution to a culture that is averse to confrontation, is to create a safe environment that would  encourage it consistently. I’m not saying this is easy  but it’s worth it.


A good first step to create this environment is through the development of an objective process that would encourage people to bring their concerns to the table. Here’s a small example of what this could look like…


When presenting a concern follow these steps:


  1. Compile all the Information


  1. Assess all Information – Not all data is equal, so proceed to carefully assess all information and determine what should remain if it passes what I call the “Pattern Test.” The Pattern test is what I use to lump all information together to find overall similarities.


  1. Diagnose the Information – All in terms of your findings (after having assessed all patterns).


  1. Share your findings – Preferably with a reputable leader or trustworthy friend (who understands this process) to help you ensure you have considered the right issues.


  1. Confront the Situation – Respectfully, and in good conscience, present the pattern to the party of concern citing your commitment to ensuring that there are no misunderstandings for the sake of the relationship.


Special Note: I know there are countless situations that present all sorts of variations, as such the main point I want to encourage us all with is to pursue the development of a God – honoring / Brother & Sister  loving process for confrontation. All  in a spirit of love, honor and trustworthiness. Having this in place will ensure a Kingdom culture that will leave a worthwhile legacy for generations to come. After all we are a family!

The hands of time have brought us yet again to this place called New Year Festivities! It’s inevitable to not look back with either Wonder, Regret or Apathy at what’s transpired.


For the most part the New Year brings with it a heightened sense of wanting to get closer to family, a promotion, a healthier lifestyle among other things. And so it goes… the gyms are full of fervent souls ready for change in January only to be littered with all the hopes of those who’ve given up on their goals by mid February… again.


Have you ever made one of those short lived resolutions? I have too, we’re all on the same boat… nonetheless this year does not have to be the same.


Here are three quick Life-Hacks to ensure your resolution does not become another casualty of good intentions:


1. Write it Down: Make sure these big goals don’t stay somewhere in your mind but cement it on paper.


2. Break it Down: Most likely your goal will be ambitious so you’ll need to break it down into manageable pieces. For example, ask yourself “What can I accomplish this month en route to my big picture goal?” Small accomplishments will keep you on track.


3. Lock it Down: This piece is crucial and the only way to accomplish it is with someone else. If you don’t bring an accountability partner into the process chance are it’ll slip away. Have someone ensure you’re locked in and locked down.



And there you have it… make sure this New Year is an iron clad reflection of your commitment to attain your goals and Calling.

My first experience in leadership was at the age of 16, in Puerto Rico. I was the Arts Director of my church. I was excited, filled with ideas, passionate and ready to take on the world. Conversely I was also immature, insecure and worst of all unappreciative.
I made many mistakes that we could chalk up to my youthfulness and inexperience, and while this is true, I would add that my greatest fault was my lack of appreciation of others. Through the years I have learned the importance of appreciating the efforts, and time, provided by people who love and believe in the visions I have led. Nonetheless, what I learned hit home when I came to the realization that ungratefulness was the sign of a bigger problem called… Pride.
The Bible has a lot to say about what this insidious devastator of souls can do to mess up our lives and that of those we serve.
          “When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom.” Proverbs 11:2 ESV
          “One’s pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor.” Proverbs 29:23 ESV
          “But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” James 4:6 ESV
So you get the idea, pride is a huge roadblock on the way to becoming a true leader. Pride is viciously concerned with only one thing, and that is itself.  No one wants to be seen as a fool or a failure, and that’s natural, but when pride is our driver we will stop at nothing to make sure we are seen as in control.
The sad thing is that every moment we allow pride to ravage more of our hearts the casualties keep mounting higher and higher, but who are these casualties? They are the ones who selflessly serve. Our volunteers, staff, members and families. It is impossible to appreciate and serve those who give of their time if pride is driving our agendas.
So what are we to do? How do we overcome this cancer of the heart known as pride?
As leaders we overcome pride through humility. Humility is the ability to truly prefer another person’s well-being above your own. When we truly seek humility we grow in wisdom and appreciation of what others have done and continue to do in service to the Lord.
Humility will engender true leadership 100% of the time…
          True leadership is bathed in the ability to prefer others above yourself.
          True leadership is consumed with finding ways to serve and appreciate others for all their efforts.
          True leadership is inspirational and spent in seeing others attain their God given call.
Ask yourself, “Am I creating conditions that will put others before me?” “Am I developing a culture that consistently reminds those served how valuable they are?” “Does your vision make room for the development and growth of those who serve?”
At the end of the day our pursuit of humility is crucial because once attained it engenders true leadership which always create a culture that provides purpose, meaning and extraordinary conditions for those we serve.