Five Basic Principles for All Leaders


I was intrigued by the concept in Leadership Code: Five Rules to Lead By that 65-70% of leadership is the same basic stuff no matter where you work. It’s amazing how these five rules apply to ministry leaders.

Here are the five basic leadership principles the Harvest Business Review determined to be the basic principles that apply to a majority of leaders.

1) Be a Strategist – Shape the Future

Ministry leaders need to have a position about the future. We need to have a vision. Everyone, at every level, should have a vision of what they want their ministry to look like.

Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he. Prov. 29:18

2) Be an Executor— Make Things Happen

An executor follows through on an assigned duty. They are responsible for getting the task finished. What is our main job? How do we know when it has been accomplished? How would you answer the question, “What have you done?”

3) Be a Talent Manager—Engage Today’s Talented People

Who do you have on your team? How can people get on your team? Who has God sent to you? What gifts do they have?

– Entry points for leaders

– Clear instructions and simple job descriptions for teachers and leaders

– Always have something in mind for the people who want to help

– “Meetings are the playground of champions.” John Maxwell—do you have a schedule for meetings?

Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. Eph 4:11-12

4) Be a Human Capital Developer—Build the Next Generation

Look for people to develop. Encourage young leaders to join you. Create systems to allow young people to serve in teaching and leading roles.

– Once a month have a high school student take the lead for a class, small group or devotion.

– Students helping to lead worship, serve in tech or take part in other ways.

– Give other leaders significant roles in ministry.

– Provide mission experiences for people.

5) Demonstrate Personal Proficiency—Invest in Yourself

In which areas do you need to grow and develop? Time management? Reading? Engaging in ministry leadership training? Putting emphasis in your weekly schedule to focus on Sunday morning—a love for Sundays! Learn to get sixty minutes from every hour. Learn to be more effective with communication? Getting more energy by taking care of yourself through good food, quality sleep, regular exercise, good organizational systems and time for prayer and scripture.

The horse is made ready for the day of battle, but victory rests with the LORD. Prov. 21:31

If you’re interested, you can pick up a copy of the book Leadership Code: Five Rules to Lead By here.


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2 thoughts on “Five Basic Principles for All Leaders”

  1. Thanks Tim,

    I agree with you! Your last comment about providing missions opportunities for our musicians is so true. I grew up as a worship leader when I got involved in missions. Great post!

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