Throughout the past two months I have learned many new things about leadership. We have been on a leadership-learning journey as part of the leadership track of the Bridge Street Mission School. Here are a few key takeaways for me as I reflect on my leadership journey the past eight weeks.
One main thing I have noticed is how easy it is for me to lead by example and to neglect the relational aspect of leadership. I am naturally an introvert and prefer solo tasks where I can do it to the best of my ability and how I want it done. While that is a good thing, in the process of completing a task, I can easily neglect those serving right along beside me. That’s not the greatest when so much of leadership is about inspiring others and going somewhere alongside them. It definitely goes against my natural tendencies. Throughout all of the Bridge Street Mission School and especially the past two months I’ve realized the importance and value in people and especially in our differences. I’ve grasped that I can’t just lead by example and neglect knowing the people I’m inspiring. I must treasure our differences and lead from a place of relational leadership.
Another inspiring recognition has been what a true servant leader is. I often times enjoy serving in the background and behind the scenes but I’ve realized how many times I serve selflessly with the hidden hope of gaining praise and acknowledgment from others. A true servant leader doesn’t care about world praise or admiration. Instead, they realize that they are serving one much greater, the creator of the universe. Once I can comprehend that, I am immediately freed from the need for worldly acknowledgment and freed up to serve selflessly and genuinely.
So the past eight weeks have been extremely formative in my own personal leadership. I’ve learned so much and can’t wait to apply it to all areas of my life. I’m sure this is just the beginning and God has many more lessons on leadership to teach me. But it’s a good start.