Leadership And The Discipline of Focus

What defines a leader?

Not a manager or someone with a title? No, a leader.

We always start with vision. A leader has a vision of where to go. A vision of what the goal of the organization or committee is.

I knew a leader once. I’ve worked in a number of organizations and businesses. I’ve known few leaders.

It was a larger organization. Several hundred people–maybe reaching toward 1,000 for a while. A church, for what that’s worth.

He knew where he was going and where he wanted to take the organization.

He selected close advisors–mostly wisely.

He encouraged teams to develop–as long as they moved the vision forward.

He could change teams as situations changed requiring new responses–but still moving the vision forward.

Researching yesterday’s post, I remembered Nehemiah.

He had a vision. He convinced the residents of Jerusalem, who had become adjusted to living in a city without walls, that it was essential they build a wall.

He organized teams, recruited leaders, but always focused on his goal.

He accomplished the goal in a remarkably short time. If any one of you has ever been part of a construction project or watched one, you know that they are almost never done on time and under budget. Nehemiah did it.

He was focused on the task. “I am doing a great work and cannot come down.”

What great work are we doing right now? What are our potential distractions that could prevent us from doing that great work.

Focus. Recognize distractions and discard them. Keep the vision in mind always.

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