Principles of Effective Leadership - Lesson 1

Overview of Principles of Effective Leadership

In this leadership in ministry lesson, you will gain an understanding of the importance of leadership in the church and the role it plays in shaping a healthy and vibrant congregation. The lesson will cover the instructor's background in pastoral and educational roles, as well as the crucial need for effective leaders in today's world. Throughout the course, you will develop familiarity with core values of godly leaders, learn how to initiate a vision strategy process for the ministry, and grasp the essentials of sound decision making and team building. Additionally, you will explore how to overcome obstacles and conflicts that come with leadership positions and develop a deeper understanding of the biblical theology of leadership.

John  Johnson
Principles of Effective Leadership
Lesson 1
Watching Now
Overview of Principles of Effective Leadership

I. Introduction

A. Instructor Background

B. Importance of Leadership

II. Course Description and Objectives

A. Leadership in Ministry Context

B. Core Values of a Godly Leader

C. Vision Strategy Process

D. Decision Making and Team Building

E. Obstacles and Conflict Resolution

F. Biblical Theology of Leadership

  • In this lesson, you'll learn about the critical role of leadership in ministry, covering key aspects like core values, vision strategy, decision making, team building, conflict resolution, and biblical theology of leadership to enhance your effectiveness as a leader.
  • This lesson offers a comprehensive exploration of the complexities and challenges in defining leadership, highlighting its context-dependent nature, the influence of culture, and the variety of styles, personalities, and traits associated with leaders; it ultimately identifies three essential components of leadership: having followers, influencing others, and setting direction.
  • In this lesson, you explore the importance of leadership, vision, and planning, and learn about key qualities of a good leader, such as global thinking, flexibility, and empathy. You will also understand the three components of leadership and the delicate balance between leadership and influence.
  • This lesson delves into the importance of leadership, illustrating how it is critical to success in the political, corporate, and religious sectors, with personal experiences and expert opinions reinforcing the need for strong leaders to guide and shape organizations.
  • In the lesson, you gain insights into the nature of leadership, its key components, and the need for leaders in various contexts. You also explore the debate on whether leaders are born with innate abilities or if leadership can be acquired and developed over time. Additionally, the concept of leadership as a summoning, where individuals are called to lead during specific situations, is introduced.
  • Focus on your strengths and improve your leadership skills through Marcus Buckingham's guide, which debunks myths about personal growth, identifies strengths, and emphasizes the value of team members volunteering their strengths while balancing service with strengths-based contributions.
  • This lesson equips you with an understanding of the context of leadership, various leadership styles, and practical applications to effectively lead in different situations.
  • When you are identifying the social context of a group, it is important to recognize the structural, human resource, political and symbolic aspects of the group.

  • In this lesson, you gain insights on situational context in leadership, focusing on the leader, followers, organization, and environment, enabling you to adapt and foster growth.
  • Gain insights into core values and axioms in leadership, the power of language and word pictures, the leader's responsibility for casting a vision, and overcoming the fear of asking for help in order to rally support for a great vision.
  • By studying humility as a core value for leaders, you gain insight into the importance of humility in avoiding temptations of pride and power and discover the characteristics that define humble leaders. Additionally, you explore other core values, such as compassion, courage, and diligence, and learn how to build and maintain these values in your life through experience, self-assessment, and reflection and how it is essential in avoiding the temptations of pride and power.
  • This lesson teaches the significance of core values and skills in effective leadership, covering aspects such as integrity, justice, authenticity, competence, discernment, and intuitive leadership, all of which contribute to becoming a well-rounded and impactful leader.
  • By exploring this lesson, you learn the importance of teamwork in leadership, the characteristics of high-performing teams, and how to build, develop, and lead successful teams in your organization.
  • Learn the principles of effective leadership, explore key leader characteristics, and discover how to build strong teams, develop leadership skills, and measure success.
  • Through this lesson, you gain insights into the critical role of leaders in setting direction, the importance of teamwork, and the need to establish a clear mission and purpose for organizations. Understanding these concepts enables you to be a more effective leader who can inspire and guide teams towards shared goals.
  • A Mission is a philosophic statement that answers the question, “Why are we here?” Vision is a strategic statement that answers the question, “Where are we going?”

  • This lesson teaches the importance of long term thinking in visionary leadership, emphasizing the value of learning from history, engaging present realities, and exploring future possibilities through scenario thinking and adapting to technology and trends.
  • This lesson explores strategic thinking, SWOT analysis, and trend analysis to help develop a clear vision and mission and adapt to an ever-changing environment in education and ministry.
  • Identifying objectives is the process of moving from vision to reality. Objectives are the tactics employed to carry out the strategies, the action plan of what needs to happen now. Decisiveness is an important quality of a good leader.

  • By studying this lesson on leadership and change, you will learn to effectively manage change in leadership, overcome resistance, implement and communicate change vision, and sustain long-lasting organizational transformation.
  • This lesson equips you with the knowledge and skills to navigate leadership challenges and transitions, fostering personal growth and organizational success.

This is a core leadership course designed for those who intend to be future leaders in ministry. This course will move from definitions to the core values of a leader; how to take a ministry through a vision process; engage in strategic planning, decision-making, and implementation; build great teams; work through conflict and change; delegate tasks; and effectively mentor the next generation of leaders. Models from the corporate, political, and military worlds will be compared and contrasted with biblical definitions and illustrations of leadership.

You may download the complete set of Dr. Johnson’s notes as a pdf. Since this class was presented during a condensed time frame, Dr. Johnson does not comment on all the points in his notes. We have provided the full text of the notes for your benefit. Click on the Class Outline link under Downloads.

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Dr. John Johnson
Principles of Effective Leadership
Lesson Transcript

Dr. John Johnson [00:00:00] So what we'll do here is let's introduce the class, talk about it a little bit, introduce each other. Then we'll just take a small break. Typically, we'll we'll try to go strong for like 15 minutes. Take a ten minute break. Okay. Well, let me begin with prayer and then we'll get started. Lord, we want to just begin this class by asking you to teach this class. Help me, Lord. Just to. Just to be your instrument, to to teach us really good things, important things about leadership, to train us, to be effective leaders. Lord, you know how much our world today is just in great need of great leaders. And I pray that you would use this course to develop that aspect in us. And we pray all of this in Jesus name. Amen. Okay. So a couple of things about me. Just familiarize some of you know me, some of you don't, but I'll tell you a couple of things and then I'd like to hear a little bit about you. I have been teaching this course for about ten years and actually been thinking about leadership for a long time, in part because I also pastor, I am pastor in my third church, so I have a sort of a bi vocational role I teach here at the seminary. And then I also pastor a church on the west side of town, Village Baptist Church. And it's a church of about 16, 1700 people. So I work with a number of pastors, so I have to live and deal with leadership all the time, which which is good. My second church was in Europe. I pastored an international church near The Hague in the Netherlands for seven years before I came back in 2000. And then I pastored a church on the east side of town here for ten years where I really learned a lot about ministry. So I've had three senior pastor. It's or I'm in my third senior pastor, though I prefer lead pastor. Senior sounds too old. So even though I'm getting older, I've always had a fascination with leadership. That's one of my favorite courses. And in fact, I just got back Friday night from Beirut, where I taught a condensed version of this class to 17 students, half Lebanese, half Egyptian, one Algerian student, which underscored to me the importance of this class because there are so many misperceptions about leadership. We have a lot of flawed models out there, and I'm convinced, I hope you are, that the key to a great, great future for the church is going to be great leaders. Makes sense, right? I believe that the great hope of the world is the church, a healthy church, vibrant church, and the great hope of the church or great leaders. Without great leaders, there isn't much of a church. If there isn't much of a church, there isn't much of a hope. So all that to say everything's riding on this course, everything that's, I'm sure, an overstatement of sorts, but to a certain extent a true statement. So the aim that I want to do here is help you become really effective leaders, more effective leaders, I should say, because you might be very effective leaders already. The intent here is to help you be maybe even more effective. I live on the west Side, as I mentioned, because I pastor on the west side of town and I've been here at Western since 2000, but I'm a graduate of the school a number of years earlier and been an adjunct at the school for many years. So I've had a long relationship with Western. But I did my MBA of A.H. and work here and the Ph.D. work at Dallas Seminary and Systematic Theology a number of years ago. While I really love the classroom. I always have had a great heart for the church, and especially in the pastoral role. So I haven't been able to leave either one of them. So that's kind of why I do what I do and they kind of reinforce one another. I think I'm a much better pastor because I'm here today doing things like this, and I think I'm a better professor because then you also know I'm not just sitting in my ivory tower reading books about ministry or leadership. I'm confronted with it every single day. It's a pretty diverse group here, doesn't it? So it should be fine. Let me go over the syllabus here pretty quickly here and make sure you all understand. Let me just read the description. It's a core leadership course designed for those who intend to be future leaders in ministry. This course will move from definitions to core values. How to take a ministry through a vision process, engage in strategic planning, decision making and implementation, build great teams, work through conflict and change delegate tasks, and effectively mentor the next generation of leaders. Models from the corporate political military world will be compared and contrasted with biblical definitions and illustrations of leadership. So what that breaks down to and objectives is to develop familiarity with some of the best thinkers on leadership. So I will try to bring into the class from time to time, just from a lot of my broad reading on leadership, different voices try to point you to people that you might want to read. If you have a certain fascination with leadership, recognize the essential nature of a Christian leader. So while we look at these different models, we'll try to keep coming back to so. But what makes our leadership distinct? For example, when I was in Beirut with working with these students and I've been over to Beirut now probably seven or eight times, what's clear is that a lot of the church has very flawed views of leadership. What would you guess would be the problem teaching in the Middle East, teaching in Beirut, working with these students? Not that I expect you to know necessarily, but any guesses as to when we talk about the church in general tends to have a very flawed view of leadership.

Speaker 2 [00:06:21] Marcia said, influenced by the political.

Dr. John Johnson [00:06:25] Yeah. I mean, a lot of the cultural view of leadership seeps into the church. So you tend to have a lot of pastors who are fairly authoritarian control turf. People come in as followers expected to be more passive, which is a very opposite picture from what we see in Scripture. The leader is a servant comes in, let's say a Ephesians for to equip the saints with the calling of a leader to do the work of ministry. So it's not passive followers watching the leader who controls, but it's the leader coming, so to speak. John 13 Christ with the towel in the base and saying, How can I serve you and how can I help make you equip you to do the work of ministry more effectively So you can see very different models so that even in this class here a couple of weeks ago, by the end of the week, students were going, How am I going to take this back into the church without getting eaten alive? So this course here is in part determined to recognize the essential nature. Look at what we learn from Scripture about leadership. Establish the core values of a godly leader. So we want to spend some time here because, you know, a big part of leadership comes down to what your core values are. So we're going to look at seven essential core values, initiating a vision strategy process for the ministry. God calls one two, because I believe and you'll see this when we move into definitions that are a big part of what a leader does is lead people towards a direction. It means that we need to understand and define themes like mission, vision, strategic thinking, objectives. This is what leaders do. We can't close the door and just hope those things happen. In fact, they won't happen without a leader. So we're going to talk about how you lead an organization to make sure it clearly understands its mission, let's say. OHSU So what is the mission of OHSU? If they don't know their mission, then you've got everybody doing their own thing. But if it's going to really matter as an organization, everybody has to get around the common mission. But what's the difference between a mission and a a vision? And there's a big difference between those two words. Most organizations have a clear mission, but very few have a clear vision. That is, what do we want to look like in five, ten, 15 years? Where are we going? So because leaders are at the heart of that, at the heart of our class, we'll be talking about these things and then strategy, the whole process. And then notice number five, grasp the essentials of sound decision making and team building. Because the reality is, is that we can have a lot of great vision, but a vision that doesn't translate into reality is just a lot of wasted time, frankly. So we're going to talk about how do we take this vision that we see where we want to go and translate into a reality? I just read a fascinating book and in fact, on the plane on the way over to the Middle East and titled From Vision to Reality. And the whole point of his book is to say ideas have a high mortality rate and some of us are what is it? Ideation is or may be one of our key core skill, strength areas of our life were created ideas. You know, we wake up in the middle of the night with ideas. Some of us are not idea people. Some of us are idea people. But what idea people have to come to grips with somewhere down the road is just having ideas. Doesn't really matter if they don't turn flesh out into reality. So the question is how does that happen? Part of this course will be how to see ideas turn into reality. Again, that's very at the very heart of what leaders do. That's all part of vision and strategy. But craft essentials, again, as I mentioned, of sound decision making and team building, because a key to great effect of leaders are people who know how to work in teams. So we're not interested here in helping you become Greater Lone Rangers. That style of leadership, which was very popular in the fifties, has had its day and never really did. Amount to a whole lot. Understand how to deal with obstacles and conflicts associated with leadership. Because leadership, by its very nature is a conflict. Anyone who chooses to lead will find they're in a war, in a conflict. There is often a war between leaders and followers. It's just the nature of living in a fallen world. So we're going to talk about obstacles. We're going to think strategically and tactically how to do that. Come to grips with the biblical theology of leadership, which is hopefully through the whole course. Keep coming back to. So what do we see in scripture here? And let me say something on that. Sometimes I've found in teaching this course, students misunderstand this and go, Well, I just thought we'd spend all of our time looking at David. And then we look at Moses and Nehemiah. We're not going to do that. We're going to every now and then go back to them. But I've designed this course over the years to try to find the pull the best ideas on leadership from, as I mentioned, from lots of different worlds and bring them all together. I don't know if we're going to get to this, but maybe in intense course, it's kind of hard to take much time to assess our own potential for leadership. We might try to talk about that from time to time and then be further prepared to go and provide significant leadership. The aim of this course, I hope, is that you will just get that much more motivated to think about leadership and be equipped to go and mentor leaders. What I know fulfills me the most is if I know from this class, you take this material and go out and find leaders that you start to pour yourselves into to be the next future leaders. So I take a condensed version, this material, from time to time in my church, I gather emerging leaders together and teach this just because I want them to become leaders in the church. My goal is that our church is a leadership intensive church because those, I think, are the healthiest and strongest churches. So any question on the objectives, that will pretty much sum up the course on course requirements, mastery of the course readings, which I'll talk about in a moment, and the lecture notes and by mastery of lecture notes, it just means this. I'd really like you to read in advance the lecture notes for what we're going to cover just so you don't come in cold. So you have some familiarity. Obviously, in an intensive attendance is very important. If you miss a day, you've missed a good chunk of the course and then involvement in interaction. Part of how I evaluate the course is I'll look back on the six of you and say, okay, so was this person here beyond physically? So what I want to know is did you contribute? Did you engage, involve yourself in the class? I'm going to I want to know that that you really came to bring something to the class to, in a sense, sit at the table together. Number three, a selection of one leader or one who's written on the subject of leadership. And then do a written analysis of his or her approach, contribution to leadership, and then integrate class lectures into your discussion. Now, here's how I'd like you to break it out on one page on the background, six seven pages on the leadership philosophy and a one page critique, something along that way. And then just like to get up, have you get up and talk about this? This assignment is designed really for you to go out there and find somebody, maybe a biography, somebody who's really been a leader in any field. It might be biology, it might be sports, it might be a great spiritual leader, somebody that maybe you've just had a certain fascination to read about. Maybe it's a political leader that you've always wanted to figure out what made them tick. Now it can also be a book on leadership. There's the difference between those two ones, more biographical, and maybe it's somebody like I mentioned this book from Vision to Reality, and maybe you say, I got a slice of leadership. I want to really understand so that that's fair game as well. I always either one is really good. I've had students over the years, Genghis Khan, Teddy Roosevelt, John Wooden. You know, people picked all kinds. Someone that you've just been fascinated with, again, when you find that person. I don't want you to tell us the whole biography of that person for most of this year. I want you to, like I said, take a page to say so. Here's a quick overview of the life. But I want what I want to get into is what made this person a leader. And there's where I want you to integrate what you've learned in this course that I see your understanding of what leadership is. And then I want you to, in all fairness, at the end, at least one page of critique. And by that, I want you to say here's where the leadership was really strong, but here's where the leadership was weak. Maybe this person persuaded people to. Maybe you're doing Alexander the Great in who is a great leader and persuaded a whole army to follow him all the way to India. That's pretty amazing leadership. The problem is he was also a womanizer and a drinker, and his core values weren't so great. That's where the critique in part what where are the flaws? But then where the strengths? That's one project now. Again, I want you to have a lot of fun with this in that I want you to go, Wow, this is my chance to really just dig in to someone I've always like. I lead a study tour every other year to Turkey and take people on this. Here to look at early church history where you can't get out of Turkey without looking at this huge, monumental presence of order Turk, who had a great influence on the whole nation in its shift. So I have a massive book on Ataturk. I never got to it yet, but I just go, So what? How did this guy do that? You know, think about somebody like that. How did this person do that? That's one requirement. Then development of a leadership notebook. And what that all means basically is I want to look at your notebooks at the end to see that you've got all the lectures nicely. It's nice if you have tabs that I see that you have written, filled in some of the things from our class discussions and you've added to that and maybe things from readings. So again, make this your leadership notebook that you're going to use to teach leadership. I just want to see that you go away with something like this and then final exam, which will be most likely a take home Now the course reading. So there is Michael you say my views this maybe for the last ten years or so because I like heat. These are nine true stories of triumph and disaster leaders who did it really well, leaders who really didn't do it well. And he teaches leadership at Wharton and tries to figure out some will on the surface, you will look at and go, this doesn't sound interesting at all. You know, how did this guy takes a insurance agency and turns it completely around? But don't let that fool you. You might look at that and say, Wow, what great insight on how to come into a large, bloated institutional church and turn it around to become something meaningful. So that's one Bill Hybels axiom. I got into this about a couple of years ago, just because he has just short little bullet things on all kinds of themes of leadership. And what I'd really recommend you do is like, divide this up in our time, of course, over the next few days and read like three or four like a day. In another word, this is not a this is not a book that you sit down and read all at once, any more than you read the Book of Proverbs in one sitting. It's not meant to be read like that. You you read aa2 page, three page, and you ponder that for a little bit and then silos politics and turf wars, because a lot of leadership involves silos, politics and turf wars. If you don't believe that, I'll be happy to share with you my recent trip to the Middle East. If you're not familiar with Lindsay, only now this book is These are to be read very differently. This book is like proverbs. You read two or three a day, maybe one in the morning, one in the evening, something like that. This one actually is where you sit down and say, okay, I'm just this is like a just like a novel. It's a story. And it's hard to to not but read through the whole thing because you're reading and you're about to the end of the chapter. And he'll say something like, And everything was fine until Mary did what see? And that's kind of how he he goes. And in all of this he's teaching about leadership. It's very creative. He's written a number of books. So and then the last one is there was a book good to great. It had a huge Impact on Leadership by Jim Collins some years ago. And what he did is he looked at what I can remember, four or five of the top corporations, and he asked this question. He found the top four, top five. And then he looked for what are the commonalities? What do these have in. And he came up with like these five or six things and wrote this book Good to Great, which was all great. But the problem was that some in the social sector or the nonprofit sector, like the church, said, Well, that's great for corporations, but what can we learn? How can we apply this? Take this into our world? So he wrote this little. So you'll appreciate that. See how thick that is. But he applies it to nonprofits. I've taken my board through this and they really appreciated it. So I want you to read this, too, to learn from it. And again, this is this would be worth worth having and taking people through. So that's the reading. I've given you a reading schedule. And I think because of the way this course is laid out, I've given you sort of a priority. I'd like Michael. You seem to be read by June 9th since he only by June 16th. Collins by June 21st and Hybels by June 23rd. And class notes obviously read by for each class, but then I'll read by the end. Of course, I'll be taking you through them. So you'll turn this in at the end. You might go, okay, I've got some time. But as we all know, in an intensive course, this will go really fast. So my encouragement is to kind of lay out a plan and then just start reading immediately. Course schedule. We're going to move from the introduction we're doing now to definition need acquiring, and we'll talk about the context of leadership. So we'll talk about context, core values and skills. Then the 16th, we'll talk about team building and mission and then vision strategies, objectives, decision making on the 21st, and then change leadership and conflict leadership and transitions. So you can see the way the course is designed is we move from definition all the way down to conflict and transitions. In other words, the aim of this course is to make you an effective leader so that you can get fired, because usually really effective leaders don't last long. They make people uncomfortable because they bring that C word, which is what change. And most people don't like change. So we'll close the class by talking about, okay, when that transition moment comes, how do you handle transition? Every leader is going to face transition. You probably already all have, but some leaders face it really well and some don't. Some plot their come back, some won't let go to their ousted. That's even true in ministry. It's a lot of people that once they get it, they just can't let go. And here you all are. You're an emerging upcoming generation. You're going to need somebody to let go. But then someday you're going to need to learn how to do that, too. Now notice presentations and then it says film. What I typically like to do is I like to show a film to close the class. And I've used the film 13 days. Anybody seen 13 days? I like this film because it's all about leadership. Kevin Costner is is a lead actor. It's the story of the Cuban Missile Crisis. When Khrushchev had put his missiles in Cuba and President John F Kennedy was faced with this crisis of removing the missiles, but knowing if he didn't do it right, it would lead to nuclear war. So it's a great film on leadership because everything's on the line. I mean, the end of the world, it doesn't get any better as far as. As the tension of leadership. We'll watch that. And the reason for that is because then in the exam, I'm going to integrate that story with things you've learned in the class. Such as? So how did John F Kennedy show this aspect of leadership, that kind of thing? Okay, so questions. That's pretty much how the class is laid out. All clear. Yes.

Speaker 2 [00:26:34] Now, maybe we can ask you about an omission on the exam you gave us. Exam?

Dr. John Johnson [00:26:42] Yeah. I will give you a study sheet at the end. So, to be clear, how to study for it, and then you'll have an exam that'll be in an envelope, and you just turn it back in. And I'll give you those details as we get to the end. So mainly a paper in exam and then reading. That's. That's what the requirements are. And then then you being here.

Speaker 2 [00:27:05] You going a list in the back?

Dr. John Johnson [00:27:06] Yes. So what I tend to do is update that with books that I have read on leadership. They are there also for you to peruse through because maybe there's you say, I don't know what to do for a book here. Well, that that's this is one place to start. And what you could do is if the title looks interesting, just get on Amazon and see what they say about it. And if you go, that's you know, a lot of times what I do on Amazon is I'll go at there and click on the book itself and search inside and I'll look at table of Contents. I'll look at the reviews. I'll look at the brief description, and I look at those three things always before I get a book to see if it's worth my time. So if you find a title or if you want to ask me if you want to, feel free to email me and say, I've got these two or three I'm thinking about, which one would you recommend more than another? And I'll be happy to say, Don't waste your time with this, or this would be or maybe you should look at this over here. So feel free to email me any time during this class with any questions. Okay? Or give me a call. But because I tend to be all over the place, not as so easy to get by phone, but you're certainly welcome to try. Okay. Let's take a let's take a ten minute break. And Marcia, let's make sure you're all set up and then we'll dive in.

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