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April 21, 2016

3 Ways to Master Leadership

By Daniel Im

Q&A Webinars are a monthly segment for Plus Members. This is where you’ll have the opportunity to ask questions to the leading experts in church planting, multisite, and multiplication. Q&A webinars are your unique opportunity to ask your questions to these thought leaders. For this month’s segment, Ed and I talk to Brad Lomenick, who is a leadership consultant, speaker, founder of BLINC, and author of The Catalyst Leader and H3 Leadership. Plus Members can watch the full segment by logging in and clicking here.

Mastering Leadership

I’m sitting here on Sunday afternoon (April 10th) watching the final round of the Masters. One of my favorite things about the final round is watching all the golfers on top of the leaderboard grind for the victory. In the end, the one who reigns victorious at Augusta National as the Masters’ champion will be the one who had the best well-rounded game. In other words, the champion will have drove the ball well, hit their iron shots well, scrambled well, putted well, and handled their emotions well.

As I watch the Masters I can’t help but draw some correlations to Ed and I’s conversation with Brad Lomenick about leadership. Brad is an expert on leadership, not to mention a masterful leader himself. During our time, we picked Brad’s brain about various leadership topics, which I believe if embraced and applied will put every leader on track to mastering leadership—in being a well-rounded leader.

Leaders are Learners

If leaders aren’t growing, how can they help others grow? One of the best ways to grow is to learn. Therefore, leaders are lifelong learners. Brad asserts leaders are without excuse in being learners since this is the greatest time to live in with regards to content consumption.

For Brad, here are some of the more foundational books on leadership: 21 Laws of Leadership by John Maxwell, Courageous Leadership and Axiom by Bill Hybels, EntreLeadership by Dave Ramsey, and The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni.

Leaders Give Others Permission to Expose Their Blindspots

Leaders aren’t necessarily aware of their blindspots, which is why they are called blindspots. Thus, in order to learn about your blindspots, you must give permission to people to speak into your life. As Brad expresses, this is difficult on two fronts.

First, it’s difficult for leaders to ask others to expose their weaknesses. It takes a secure leader to solicit constructive feedback to enhance their leadership. Second, it’s difficult for others to be vulnerable and authentic enough to speak into the life of another leader. They may fear a negative reaction or defensiveness from the leader. Such apprehension is why you must consistently invite safe people around you to speak into your life. The more permission you give them, the more comfortable they’ll be in giving you the information you seek. [For more information on safe people read, Safe People by Henry Cloud.]

Leaders Define Success Differently 

In the West, both inside and outside the church, culture tends to define success numerically. Bigger buildings, budgets, and bodies tend to equate to success. This leaves many leaders in the church world struggling with their identity. According to Brad, if you define success based solely on numbers, you may either crush it or be crushed by it. Numbers only tell part of the story, which is why finding a balanced metric to gauge leadership success is essential.

Brad suggests that a balanced metric for leadership success is faithfulness. So, leaders should ask themselves are they being faithful to hustle, to be hungry, and to be humble? And more importantly, they need to ask themselves are they being faithful to the call of God on their lives? In short, the measure of faithfulness is the metric of kingdom success. Thus our identity is wrapped up in the God we serve faithfully, not in the fruitfulness (or lack there of) of our ministry.

To read the final two points on mastering leadership and to listen to the entire Webinar with Brad Lomenick—that also includes him discussing much more on leadership including advice to those leading in the second chair—click here for the full video and post. 

This video is part of Plus Membership, so to get full access to it, and much more, I encourage you to become a Plus Member. Click here to see all the benefits of becoming a Plus Member.

Tweetables from the Webinar:

  • Leaders are learners.
  • Leaders give others permission to expose their blindspot
  • Leaders define success differently.
  • Leaders leverage their position to elevate others.
  • Leaders see themselves as catalysts.
  • If leaders aren’t growing, how can they help others grow?
  • In order for leaders to learn about their blindspots, they must give permission to people to speak into their life.
  • If you define success based solely on numbers, you may crush it or be crushed by it. @bradlomenick
  • One of the best markers of effective and masterful leadership is that the leader uses his or her position as leverage to elevate others.
  • The people closest to you must be the ones flourishing the most. @bradlomenick
  • A catalyst leader works himself or herself out of a job.
  • Masterful leaders catalyze people to lead so that when they are gone, the people & the mission don’t miss a beat.


Daniel Im

Daniel Im (@danielsangi) is the Director of Church Multiplication for NewChurches.com at LifeWay Christian Resources. He is a Teaching Pastor at The Fellowship, a multisite church in Nashville. He is the author of No Silver Bullets: Five Small Shifts that will Transform Your Ministry, and co-author of Planting Missional Churches: Your Guide to Starting Churches that Multiply (2nd ed) with Ed Stetzer. He also co-hosts the New Churches Q&A Podcast, the 5 Leadership Questions Podcast, and a brand new podcast with his wife on marriage and parenting called the IMbetween Podcast. He has an M.A. in Global Leadership and has served and pastored in church plants and multisite churches ranging from 100 people to 50,000 people in Vancouver, Ottawa, Montreal, Korea, Edmonton, and Nashville. Visit Danielim.com to learn more.


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