Today I am continuing my look at how real leaders function in today’s world. This post describes how I have observed the most effective leaders are totally secure in their own skin. Show me a person in a leadership position who is insecure and I will predict when chaos will happen.
There are a number of ways we can tell if a leader is secure. One way is how he/she relates to the subordinates on his/her staff. I knew a church in Texas where a very effective associate pastor was in charge of the youth, education and music programs. The [pastor left for greener pastures and a new pastor came in. This pastor had been very successful in his west Texas pulpit, but he did not have any staff, other than a part time music director. Now, he came to the new church and found several staff, people who were loved by the church members. When you have never had to share the affections of the people , you find yourself getting a bit envious at the way the people treated these staff members. They actually loved them all, including the associate pastor in charge of education, youth and music.
This was a new experience for the incoming pastor. He had never had to share the love of a congregation with anyone else and he did not know how to handle it. On one occasion the pastor saw the associate pastor speaking to a deacon in the hallway. He waited until they were finished and then called the associate to his officer, where he lambasted him for “talking about me” to a deacon. When told they were not talking about him, the pastor insisted on knowing exactly what they were talking about, if not him. When told, all he could say was, “O.K., then.” No apology, no remorse, nothing.
This pastor had a first class associate but could not trust him because he was insecure. Needless to say, the associate soon left the pastor to himself and went on to a worthy career. The pastor went nowhere.
You can tell a great leader by the kind of people he brings on to his staff. Here is the formula I have seen over and over again. First class leaders hire first class people. Second class people hire third class people. You can see it in churches, businesses, schools…everywhere that leaders function.
A first class person brings other first class people because that is who God directs. Second class people often ignore God’s leading and bring to the staff people who will not take the spotlight away from the person in the position of leadership. They are often incompetent, and will eventually cause problems.
More churches have been injured in this way than in almost any other. If a church calls an incompetent pastor, it is likely he will hire incompetent staff and that is the germination of a problem.
So, yes, you can judge the leader’s competency by the kind of people he hires to assist him. First class people hire first class people. Second class people hire third class people.