7 Surprising and Endearing Characteristics of Highly Effective Church Leaders

endearing leaders

What makes a successful leader successful?

And—here’s the next question—could you adopt any of their characteristics to help you become a more effective leader?

Sometimes it’s easy to think that some people were just ‘born’ successful or that they ‘have it’ and you don’t. For sure, some people are gifted communicators, visionaries or organizational wizards who seem to naturally know how to lead churches and organizations.

But the recipe for a leader’s effectiveness does not all lie in the gene pool.

The good news is there are common traits and characteristics that make highly successful church leaders successful.

And the really good news is that these characteristics can be learned and then adopted by leaders like you and me.

Last year I launched a leadership podcast (you can subscribe and listen for free here) and so far have had the opportunity to interview over 20 top church leaders. Not only has this been a fun journey, but early on I started to notice common characteristics among all these leaders as we did the interviews.

The common characteristics are so simple they’re surprising, and you might be tempted to dismiss them. But they’re incredibly endearing. And I think they are in part what makes each of them effective in their own realm.

And there is absolutely nothing stopping you from adopting each of the characteristics in your own leadership starting today.

Seven Surprising and Endearing Characteristics

So what do leaders like Andy Stanley, Jon Acuff, Jeff Henderson, Derwin Gray, Tony Morgan, Kara Powell, Casey Graham, Ron Edmondson and others have in common?

Of course they’re gifted speakers, writers, thinkers, strategists and more. But they also do the following seven things very, very well.

And before we jump to the list, you can get the full list of leaders here and can listen to any or all of the interviews by subscribing to my podcast (for free) on iTunesStitcher or TuneIn Radio.

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Carey Nieuwhof
Speaker and podcaster Carey Nieuwhof is a former lawyer and founding pastor of Connexus Church, one of the largest and most influential churches in Canada. With over 6 million downloads, The Carey Nieuwhof Leadership Podcast features today's top leaders and cultural influencers. His most recent book is “Didn’t See It Coming: Overcoming the 7 Greatest Challenges That No One Expects and Everyone Experiences.” Carey and his wife, Toni, reside near Barrie, Ontario and have two children.