I love the idea of being a leader who extends and embodies grace, especially when I see so many other leadership models that seemingly are convinced that grace will diminish rather than improve your leadership effectiveness. And I am pretty sure being a Christ-like leader means that we have to believe deeply and regularly default to grace when it comes to our relationship with those who we have been given the privilege to lead...grateful for the reminder today from this blog post and author's thoughts...
Here is a list of 8 traits of grace filled leadership:
1. Emphasis on principles rather than rules - Rules modify behavior, principles change hearts. Anyone can adjust their lifestyle for a season or adhere to a structure. Lives are truly changed through transformation rather than conformity. When we focus on principles, it teaches people wisdom which works in a multitude of situations.
2. Valuing people - It is easy to view people as a means to success in our teams. If our people feel cared for and valued for who they are, not merely what they do; we will have their hearts and their loyalty. This involves listening to our people and finding ways to serve them; all motivated by a desire to see them succeed.
3. Push towards excellence, leaving room for failure - As gracious leaders, we know our own shortcomings and failures. This gives us the ability to push people towards success while also allowing them to make mistakes. After all, people allowed us to learn some of our greatest lessons through failure. No one wants to work for a leader who demands perfection.
4. Allows different opinions while promoting commonalities - One of the leading traits of controlling leaders is insecurity. Insecure leaders hurt people. Gracious leaders recognize the need to surround themselves with other strong leaders, valuing differing strengths and ideas.
5. Confronts personally - Gracious leadership is not a free for all with no confrontation. Rather, the confrontation occurs in a manner which values the team member. You want to avoid general announcements or side comments to a group. Value people enough to say the hard things to them face to face.
6. Allows people to experience the consequences of their actions - Another misconception of grace is “sloppy agape”. True grace realizes lessons are often learned through experiencing the result of a bad decision and learning from it. Grace does not remove consequences or attempt to protect people from their bad decisions. Titus 2:12 tells us, “grace trains…”
7. Believes the best - We must trust our people; doing away with judgment, critical spirits, and suspicious attitudes. This value allows us to truly release people to do the job, avoiding the dreaded dirty delegation or micro-management.
8. Willing to be abused - Grace filled leaders often get accused of being taken advantage of. People naturally look for loopholes or ways to work the system. But, this happens in rule-based leadership as well. The potential for abuse does not disqualify the leadership style. A few will work the system, but more will flourish and thrive under this style of leadership.