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Bill Hybels on Leadership Fundamentals

In the opening session of the 2010 Willow Creek Global Leadership Summit Bill Hybels went back to the basics and asked: “What do leaders do?”  “What are the fundamentals of leadership?”  Hybels went on to give the following four answers to those questions:

1. Leaders Move People from Here to There.

This is not just about the vision-thing.  I used to think the first step for any leader is to cast a vision.  Years of experience have shown me that is not the case, because even after casting the most compelling vision, some people will respond, “Bill, we really like here better than there.”  

The first-step play is not to make “there” sound phenomenal; the first play is to make “here” sound horrific and intolerable.  We must build a strong case for why we cannot stay put and why it would be disastrous.  

2. Leaders Need to Identify Fantastic People

When looking for fantastic people to be on your team start with the three C’s:  character, chemistry and competency.  However, lately I have been thinking about adding a fourth C: culture.  Culture asks the question “Will they fit in around here?”   

3. Leaders Need to Create Mile Markers and Celebrations

In a marathon, it is not the first few miles that are a struggle; it is easy to get off to a good start.  The last few miles are not as challenging because the finish line is now in sight.  The hardest part of the journey is the long miles in between.  What is needed:  First, re-fill the vision bucket.  The vision leaks over the miles and it needs to be re-filled.  Secondly, celebrate what you have accomplished.  A celebration is not just for the finish line, but also for along the way. There is a 40% differential in productivity between an inspired and an uninspired staff worker.  

4. Leaders Need to Hear Whispers from God.

God still speaks.  God still speaks to us every day! You are not meant to do this alone.  The smartest leadership moves I have made did not come from human wisdom.  Ask yourself, “Do you think God still speaks?”  If he does still speak, then what are you doing to hear from him everyday?