Episode 78 - 21 Dec 2020
One of the most important aspects of leadership is the ability to change and grow. On this episode of the Church Leadership Podcast, David Penuel joins Adam and John to discuss his process of reinventing himself. By taking an intentional look at his own flaws, committing to learn, and prioritizing the success of others, David had been able to achieve transformation in his life and ministry.
What does it actually take to reinvent ourselves? For the many of us who feel stuck in our ways or perhaps pigeon-holed into a particular role, we may feel the need for change. The reality is that a core aspect of leadership is the willingness to grow. We need to always be willing to shape ourselves more into the image of Christ.
So, when looking back at his own reinvention process, David Penuel identified three steps key to transformation:
1. Start to Seriously Work on Your Character Flaws
We need to take time to deliberately look at our own shortcomings. If we are unable to see what areas of our lives are in need of change, we need to ask trusted friends and mentors to point out these things in us. For many, activities like journaling and counseling, or ministries like re:generation, can be incredibly helpful in revealing our sin struggles and insecurities and encouraging us to bring them to the Lord.
Working on your character flaws should not only be a means of moving up in an organization, but should be done out of obedience to the Lord. When we are prayerful and surrendered to what the Lord has for us, He will begin to redeem our mistakes and refine our flaws.
2. Consistently Learn From Leaders Outside Your Circle
When you feel in need of reinvention, there is wisdom to looking outside your normal circles. Consider expanding your consumption outside of the normal Christian podcasts or Christian books. For example, reading something like The Ride of a Lifetime, by Robert Iger. It is filled with knowledge and advice that, while not from a Christian perspective, still has incredible value and worth.
A heart to learn often proceeds a heart of humility. After looking at your own flaws, you can then move into learning how to change. Learners are often get invited in and granted additional opportunity. The most successful organizations and individuals are those who are committed to learning and growing. So, ask questions of and read books by people who are where you want to be. Then work to reverse engineer how to get there.
3. Define Success by Your Successors
2 Timothy 2:2 says that "...what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men, who will be able to teach others also." We need understand that the success of those underneath you is more important than your own upward mobility. This is the essence of discipleship. Lead and train others in such a way that you would be excited for them to be your boss one day.
When you feel insecure about your own success or the success of others, remember that your identity needs to be secure in Christ. Your own reinvention needs to be a process of growth that is committed to flourishing even if you yourself are not being commended for it. If a better leader comes along, you and everyone around you will be blessed by giving them opportunity.
Lastly, remember that reinvention takes time. Be in it for the long game. Don't get discouraged if people do not notice right away or your reputation takes a while to change. Over the course of time, you will be able to look back and see the ways that the Lord has transformed you.
Thank you for listening to the Church Leadership Podcast! To suggest topics for future episodes, ask Adam or John questions, or give us your feedback, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sr. Director of Watermark Resources
Cohost of Church Leadership Podcast