This is a great question for all leaders because we should all continue to learn and grow and get better! If you were part of our First Look Preschool Interactive at Orange Conference 2014, you received a cling with this verse from Nehemiah.
“I am doing a great work and I cannot come down!” Nehemiah 6:3.
We can learn a lot about being a good leader from Nehemiah by investigating three priorities he had in his life.
Nehemiah prayed—often. Any time there was a decision to be made, his very first action was to pray. We would do well to follow his example and make prayer our first step in every decision we face.
All great undertakings require a plan. While there are times when God will miraculously provide—manna in the desert, the parting of the Red Sea, etc.—most of the time, He gives us inspiration, creativity, and strength for us to accomplish His plan. Rebuilding a wall around a city was going to take a great plan. Nehemiah carefully planned each step then set about putting that plan into place.
To be a great leader, we need to plan. We can plan for this month and this year. We can even make plans for next year. Of course, all our plans are subject to change, but we have a direction that we are going and a plan we hope to accomplish.
Nehemiah cared about people. He inspired and rallied them to an impossible task. He worked hard alongside them and praised them publicly. He cared about their home lives, too, not just what they contributed to the task. To be a great leader, we need to care about the people around us. We should care for those staff members over us, the team members beside us and the volunteers who serve for us. Making those around us a priority will help us be a leader that others will be glad to follow.
Prayer, Planning and People are all important pieces of what it takes to be a good leader! As we continue to pray more, plan better and love people the best we can, our abilities as a leader will continue to grow, too! Over the next few months, we will continue to look at the life of Nehemiah, the great leader that he was and the leadership lessons that we can apply to our lives, as well!