Whether you’re leading a small team or a big business, here are three useful “What’s” you may want to work into your daily routine:
These two words are at the very core of the artistic and entrepreneurial spirit. What if we did this? What if we did it this way? What if God wanted to…. For creatives, there is simply no end to the infinite options before them. The challenge becomes which to choose. Until there is a clear, compelling, and unified vision, your team will be frustrated, your resources will be squandered, and your goals will go unrealized.
Just because something can be done, it doesn’t follow that it should be done—or perhaps done now. The discerning leader will help articulate the “what if?” that is welling up in the hearts of the team and then help develop a step-by-step strategy to help achieve that vision. It will be tempting to do it all at once—to throw everything at it until it’s accomplished. But this usually wears out the team long before the contest is over.
The mature leader will lay out the big picture, then show the next steps necessary to accomplish it. Along the way, he or she will encourage and update the team about the progress that’s being made and share any unforeseen challenges that have arisen. Helping your team accomplish a series of meaningful short-term goals will create the trust and tenacity necessary for them to achieve the big, long-term ones.
You may have heard the saying that “the good is the enemy of the best.” It simply means that it’s tempting to be distracted by other legitimate–but less important—priorities. In reality, each of us only have a finite number of hours in our day and dollars in our account. We can only spend them on a limited number of things.
Great leaders identify what’s most important, keep the team on task, and help folks de-prioritize potential distractions. Saying “yes” to one thing will, by definition, mean saying “no” to others. This principle works in marriage as well as in other areas of life. Keep the main thing the main thing.
As a leader—or perhaps as THE leader—your role involves capturing the vision, prioritizing the vision, and protecting the vision. The better you do this, the more successful your small team or big business can be.
[Note: I originally composed and posted this blog at DiscoverWorshop.com, an online resource for Choir Directors and Worship Leaders. Feel free to check it out.]