As leaders, we’d like to think the problem is “out there” rather than realizing we need to change. That’s the nature of blind spots. So far, in this series, we have looked at four out of the five blind spots. Here are the topics and links, if you want to read them:
#1 Making Ourselves the Exception to the Rule
#2 Always needing to be Right
#3 Intimidating Others
#4 Avoiding problems.
The last blind spot is “inconsistencies.” We may think we are consistent, but we’re really not. Everyone sees our discrepancies even when we don’t. They may not tell us to our face, but our ability to lead them is weakened by our lack of consistency.
So, where do you and I need to be more consistent? Here are three areas that come to my mind. They are essential for every leader and pastor.
- The Example We Establish. Nothing impacts culture more than our actions. Others may not hear what we say, but they always see what we do. That’s convicting! When we are not consistent, others may still like us, but they will never respect us. We lose our credibility. So ask yourself: Do I keep my promises? Am I reliable? Do I do what I’m asking others to do?
- The Emotions We Express. Do people wonder which “you” will show up? Moods affect everyone. As a leader, you don’t have the luxury of expressing your every feeling. When we are moody or unpredictable in our emotions, people become distrustful. People will stop being honest with you for fear of your response. So ask yourself: Am I able to control my emotions? Do I ever over-react and become defensive with others? Do I easily become annoyed or angry?
- The Expectations We Envision. As leaders, we often like the next new thing. But we can’t be changing the direction of our churches every month. Put simply, inconsistency in our vision creates confusion. We need to make sure we are clearly communicating with others. If changes are needed, do it together. So ask yourself: Am I staying committed to the vision? Do I communicate it often? Am I careful when making changes?
Our leadership is compromised every time we’re inconsistent. So how dependable are you? Here’s a challenge. Ask those around you about your consistency. Start with your family. Ask your staff—both paid and unpaid. Talk to a few close friends. Be willing to listen and make the necessary changes to be more consistent.
BEFORE YOU GO
Blind spots. We all have them. It’s easy to blame and move on. It’s hard to be humble and teachable. I’m reminded of that old spiritual – “Not my brother, not my sister, but it’s me, oh Lord, standing in the need of prayer!”
What are your thoughts?