15 Ways to Be a Kinder, Gentler Leader, Part 2


In yesterday's post, we gave you 8 ways to become a kinder, gentler leader. We kick off today's post with a powerful ninth way...

9. Guard my tongue. 

The words I choose are very important. Not EVERYTHING I am thinking needs to be said. I need a filter. I developed my own, maybe this is helpful for you?

Before I decide what I say and don’t say I try to ask: “Will this H.E.L.P.?”

Is this:

H. Honoring to God and others?

Is this excellent, praiseworthy, and profitable? If not, well…

E. Encouraging?

Does this spur them on toward love and good deeds? Is this helpful?

L. Loving?

Is this gentle and kind? Am I communicating through the lenses of loss or love?

P. Peacemaking?

Will this bridge the gap or drive a wedge?  

10. Be consistent in my meetings with my leaders.

Don’t be a “swoop down” or “swoop in” leader. If the only time our team members see us coming is when something is wrong, then we’re wrong in our leadership. Consistently meeting with our leaders allows us to  be proactively more than reactive and sets our team up for more consistent wins.  

11. Have meetings before the meeting.

Your leaders can’t support you fully if you constantly surprise them or catch the off guard in group settings. Don’t walk into a meeting and say “God told me,’ or “thus saith the Lord,” and just expect everyone to jump onboard. Have some one-on-one meetings before the big meeting with some key influencers, to talk things through and garner support from the key influencers before dropping something in a group setting without any support. Build some support BEFORE the meeting. Often ask: “What do you guys think?” Most people won’t buy in unless they weigh in.

12. Ask for consistent feedback.  

Our team members aren’t the only ones who need to get better. We do! Ask your team for feedback. Be specific with your questions and ask them to be specific in their feedback. When they give you feedback, don’t defend yourself, and don’t be defensive! If you do, you will be surrounded with YES men and YES women, and your organization's biggest blind spot... will be you! When your team suggests something, take action on it! They are more apt to give future feedback if they think you will actually do something about it.

13. Normalize coaching conversations.

Have systemized times on the calendar to circle up and debrief every service, event, and environment. Debrief rather than micro-manage. Don’t confront in the heat of the moment. Empower, observe, and debrief! When debriefing anything or anyone, always lead with what was RIGHT, then what was WRONG.

14. Lead with questions not commands.

Instead of telling our assistant to “Put this on my calendar,” it takes five more seconds to say: “_______, can you please place this on my calendar?” Instead of saying “I need you to attend this,” ask: “Would you be willing to attend this?” Sure I can force them, but I will be respected more if I lead with questions rather than commands!

15. In everything, be filled with the Spirit.

Prove by the way we lead and respond that God lives inside of us! No matter what, in everything, we should test ourselves and determine to be known by the fruit of His Spirit not the fruit of our flesh!  

Eph 5:18 (NIV): “…be filled with the Spirit.”

Gal 5:22 (NKJV): “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”