A Lesson from a Busy Street

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Yesterday, after making a hospital visit, I sat in my suburban and watched as a student driver tried to parallel park two spots in front of me. (If it had been the spot directly in front of me, I may not have been as patient.)

The car pulled up, waited for a while, then slowly started backing up. Every passing car on the busy street caused greater hesitation, and I could sense the anxiety of the driver from where I sat.

The car ever so slowly inched into the parking spot, except the driver had turned too much and was almost perpendicular with the curb instead of parallel. After waiting for a moment, the car pulled forward and moved on like nothing had happened.

The driving instructor in that car could very likely parallel park with the best. All he would have to do is get out, and switch sides with the driver. But that’s not why the instructor rides in the car. The instructor guides the driver.

Often times, leading others unfolds in a similar way. We ride with them as they attempt something that seems completely foreign and unnatural. We talk them through the strategy, the thought process, and the mechanics. Then, in the moment of truth, they over correct and cannot pull it off. So, we move forward with them, taking the opportunity to help them learn from the experience.

More than likely, we are asking someone else to accomplish something we could accomplish on our own, and often times more efficiently. But if we buy into leadership development as a calling and a responsibility, then very rarely does anyone benefit from our sitting in the driver’s seat.

Instead, if you want to help others grow as leaders, learn to ride in the instructor’s seat. Instruct, guide, advise, but avoid kicking them out of the car because you can do better.

So, do you buy into leadership development as something you are called to do? Are you capable of letting go to see someone develop? Are you willing to let go?

Click here to see how I’m training student leaders to expand their leadership influence.

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Check It Out: Start Somewhere

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As I mentioned on Tuesday, I’m going to start sharing some early blog posts. This one, titled “Start Somewhere”, seems a fitting place to start. Here’s a glimpse, click to read the rest.

I am a thinker. I have a terrible tendency to be able to argue both sides, even when they don’t need to be argued. Because of my propensity to think, I joke that I spend 90% of my time thinking about what I could do, and 10% actually doing it.

Click here for the rest of this post.

Mid-Summer Check In

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Wow. Just wow.

January 30 was when I started blogging regularly on this site. I started out because I had a simple idea I felt like I needed to share. (You can read more about that here.)

Today, we are nearing the end of June, which means I have been blogging consistently (for the most part) for five months.

If you’ve stuck with me so far, thank you so much. I have been advised not to watch my views and visitors, but I do it anyway. So, every time you click, I’m grateful.

Here are a few thoughts as the journey continues.

  1. If you’re new here, thanks for stopping by. Please feel free to click around the site and read some of the posts. My early posts are relatively longer, whereas the posts from April start getting a little shorter. My goal is to post twice a week with content that is simple, yet applicable. Feel free to check out my series titled “Lessons from the Farm” by clicking here.
  2. If you’re a regular, would you be willing to do me a favor? It’s hard to describe what a social media “share” does in terms of reach. Would you take just a few minutes to find one of the posts you like the most and “share” it on Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media platform you frequent? I would love to see the impact of this blog grow, and you can play a major role in helping.
  3. I will continue posting “fresh” content twice a week. However, with almost 50 posts published to date, I am going to start “recycling” one post each week. Part of this is for new people (see line 1), and part is because I think an idea may be solid and worth repeating.
  4. Let me know you’re reading! You can do this by a comment on the site, a like on Facebook, or a high five in real life. Few things fuel me more than genuine affirmation. (That may turn in to a post later this week.
  5. Finally, subscribe however possible:

Find the blog on Facebook by clicking here or searching “three question leadership” on Facebook.

You can follow 3QL on Twitter here.

You can also subscribe to receive new posts by email by clicking here.

Once again, thank you for your time, for your encouragement so far, and for the days and weeks ahead. I think we are onto something great as we continue to help expand your leadership influence!

 

Write It Down

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Leaders take notes. I know that I remember things better when I take notes. I know that when I take notes, I essentially have a record of my learnings that I can examine later and help cement what was happening.

But, I stink on the discipline side of taking notes.

Or, when I have a good idea, I’ll think to myself “this is a great idea! I’ll never forget this life changing idea!” When, in reality, the next day the idea has already been forgotten.

I know this is not a revolutionary concept by any means, but it is still a concept worth covering. Write things down.

I jump around on what I use to keep written track of my thoughts and ideas. I have used composition notebooks, Moleskine notebooks, a yellow legal pad (which is my current weapon of choice), and even small notebooks I had made for the ministry at my church.

Or sometimes I will use my phone to help keep track. My current app of choice is Wunderlist, although Evernote, the basic To Do App, and the Notes app on my iPhone have all gotten plenty of usage over the years.

The bottom line is this: find what works for you, and use it. You’re not me (thankfully), but the principle is true. If you want to grow in leadership, in productivity, in influence, in life, good things happen when you start to write things down.

A New Adventure

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Next week a project on which I have been working and dreaming up for the past two years launches–Horizon Leadership Camp.

On Wednesday, I will load vehicles with a group of students going to youth camp with Horizon Camps. While we are there, I have the opportunity to pour into a small group of student leaders with the sole purpose of helping them develop as leaders.

Many of the things I’ve written over the past 4+ months will play a role in what I share, but more than anything I have to say, I am excited about the opportunity to interact and help develop student leaders from a context different than my own students.

Would you like to find out more about Horizon Camp and the Horizon Leadership Camp experience? Click here.

While this is happening, I also have the opportunity to pour into my own students and student leaders as we enter a new chapter in our ministry, and I couldn’t be more excited.

So, what’s the leadership principle or thought in this?

Hard work pays off?

Leaders develop leaders?

Hang in there?

I can force a principle, but the reality of this post is I am excited. Developing leaders and watching students, especially, adventure out of their comfort zones gives me high expectations.

I am so grateful for someone who saw something in me, pursued it, and has helped me grow through it.

So here’s to a new adventure, to HLC 2.0.

 

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