I was recently interviewed by ShareFaith as part of their series on leadership. They asked me to briefly address 5 questions:
Here is the interview:
ADVICE FOR LEADERS FROM DR. ROGER PARROTT
Dr. Roger Parrott is an author, and president of Belhaven University. Dr. Parrott’s history of service in missions (Lausanne) and education has equipped him to provide solid advice for both experienced and aspiring Christian leaders. We asked Dr. Parrott some questions about leadership, and have provided his valuable answers.
1. What do you think is the biggest challenge facing leaders today?
Stability. We are leading in a remarkably uncertain time, and what those we serve need a leader who is not pushed back and forth by the changing circumstances. When a leader is chasing after a variety of options without assurance of what might be effective, hoping the next one will bring a solution, the people around us become fearful and constrictive in their work. They don’t need a leader who has all the answers, but they do need one who has a firm hand on the rudder to set a clear course during this storm.
2. What is one characteristic that you believe every leader should possess?
Humility. Answers are not hard to find if you listen. Charisma is not hard to whip up with a bit of practice. Courage comes with the territory of leadership. But most leaders fail because they don’t have the humility to understand their role is to serve others, not to be their boss. When a leader is humble, they hire around them the best people, they trust the judgement of others which in-turns empowers others, and they are accepting of ideas from any source. If a leader has the humility to understand the privilege of serving, rather than wanting to be privileged for being the leader, then the entire ministry creates the energy that pushes the mission forward.
3. How do you deal with anxiety and stress?
I have learned to look back – and in doing so I lower my anxiety and stress when I look forward. The future is ominous—but then, the future is always ominous! When we look ahead at our challenges personally, organizationally, or globally, we say “yikes” because the unknown is overwhelming. But when we look behind, we see the route we’ve already traveled is much like the one ahead. And when we recount how we have overcome the unknown and unexpected challenges of the past, we can say “wow” because of how God has protected us.
The reminder of the interview with my responses to the other 2 questions can be found HERE.