Most of us are leaders in some area of our lives—at work, home, or church. And as leaders, it is important for us to lead ourselves and others well. We want to be leaders that inspire others to make our vision a reality, but we also want to help others live into the vision God has for their lives.

And one of the best ways to inspire others is to be a wise leader—a leader people can trust to follow and a leader who invests in others and allows others to invest in them.

Seven Characteristics of a Wise Leader

  1. Leaders have vision.They communicate a compelling picture of a better future. This provides direction and inspiration for people. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., communicated a brighter future and changed a nation with his vision. Steve Jobs had a vision for new ways to communicate, and it has impacted almost every person in the world. Vision creates innovation.
  2. Leaders have character (1Timothy 3 and Titus 1). The Bible is very clear on the character required to be a good leader. They are to be above reproach. They have the heart of a humble servant and display a Christ-like attitude. Everything a leader says and does rests on his character. There are many leaders who had clear, compelling visions that vanished due to their lack of character.
  3. The best leaders make a lasting impact. They create a good wake of leaders after them. Anyone can share ideas and theorize, but true leaders have people who follow them and help make their visions a reality long after their time. The phrase “the proof is in the pudding” is true when it comes to leadership.
  4. Great leaders know themselves and understand people well. They are emotionally and relationally intelligent. Understanding yourself, leading yourself well, understanding others, and leading others well are all part of emotional intelligence. The best leaders are aware of what is going on inside themselves and inside the heads of others. They know when there is resonance and dissonance and can make adjustments when necessary.
  5. The best leaders communicate well with inspiration, information, and appreciation. Communication is not optional for great leaders. They inspire with vision and stories, inform with facts, and appreciate people with words of affirmation and actions.
  6. Great leaders aggressively seek feedback. They have an unquenchable desire to get better, so they seek specific feedback for improvement.
  7. Finally, the best leaders are surrounded by people who provide support, guidance, and feedback. They know it takes a team to succeed and they need truth tellers around them to serve as a personal life board. They always have mentors for multiple areas of life and leadership.

Part of being a wise leader is picking a path that will lead you, others, and your organization to a desired destination. Join us for Future Quest this week to connect with others and learn about the Principle of the Path.