Seems like everyone now a day is coming out with a new book about leadership. I personally have two books on leadership that I highly recommend: “Leaders Who Last” by Dave Kraft and “The 5 Levels of Leadership” by John C. Maxwell. However, if we really want to know what leadership should look like, we need to examine the life of the greatest man and leader to ever live, Jesus Christ. As I have studied the life of Jesus, I have gathered 7 qualities of a great leader. Here they are.
1) A Great Leader Serves
Jesus did not come to be served, but to serve (See Matthew 20:28 and Mark 10:45). When the disciples were arguing about who is the greatest, Jesus told them in order to be great you must serve (See Mark 10:43-44). So if you want to be a great leader you must first serve others.
2) A Great Leader Leads by Example
Jesus always demonstrated what to do for the disciples before He told them to do it. He performed miracles, He washed their feet, and He went to the cross. He never told the disciples to do something before He showed them how to do whatever He was asking.
3) A Great Leader Does not Expect Something from Someone Else that They don’t Expect from Themselves
Jesus told the disciples to deny themselves and take up their cross (See Mark 8:34). After this Jesus denied Himself and went to the cross for us. Jesus never asked the disciples to do something that He wasn’t willing to do Himself. Jesus will never ask you to do something that He hasn’t already done Himself for you.
4) A Great Leader Recognizes other Leaders
The main reason why Jesus went back to reinstate Peter is because He recognized Peter as a leader. Peter always took charge, always spoke out, always stepped out of the boat. After Jesus’ death, Peter says to the other disciples that he was going fishing and they followed him (See John 21:1-3). Jesus knew if He could get Peter then He would get the rest of the disciples.
5) A Great Leader Develops other Leaders
Jesus put His disciples in different situations and circumstances in order to develop them and grow them. He sent them out in a boat into a storm, the first time was with Him then the second time was without Him. He told them to split the 5,000 into groups of 50 and had the disciples feed the multitude. He taught them constantly through parables and demonstrations.
6) A Great Leader Sends out other Leaders
Jesus sent out the 12 disciples (See Matthew 10:1-5, Mark 6:7, Luke 9:1-2). He sent out 72 others (See Luke 10:1-3). He sent out all of us (See Matthew 28:18-20). Great leaders don’t hold other leaders back. After they recognize them and develop them, they send them out.
7) A Great Leader is Led
You can’t just be led by anything, but a great leader is led by the Spirit. Jesus was anointed by the Spirit (See Luke 4:18-19), He was filled with the Spirit (See Luke 4:1), and He was led by the Spirit (See Matthew 4:1, Luke 4:1). You can’t be a great leader if you are not anointed, filled, and led by the Spirit.