Healthy Leaders


The Art of Getting Buy-In to the Vision

Malcolm WebberMalcolm Webber

Even the most “on-fire” leaders cannot accomplish extraordinary things alone. Neither is this God’s purpose. He wants an army of ordinary people to do His will, not just spiritual superstars.

Leaders must take steps to rally others around a common vision.

If they are to embrace it, the vision must be genuinely meaningful to the people. When the people perceive that their leader’s vision is meant to serve them rather than just serve the leader, the following occurs:

  1. They will permit the leader to deviate from certain organizational norms and traditions.
  2. They will have a greater tolerance of whatever personality quirks the leader may have.
  3. They will be more willing to suspend their judgment of innovative or risky proposals advocated by the leader.
  4. Failures are not likely to be evaluated as harshly.
  5. The leader will have the credibility necessary to garner the people’s commitment to the vision and to the hard work it will take to achieve it.

Often, the people are not as wedded to the status quo as their leaders think they are. Many times, people are waiting on their leaders!

There is a balance between the top leader establishing the direction for the organization and the people participating in that process. Here is how the process works. The top leader establishes the general direction for the people in accordance with the Word of God and the leading of the Holy Spirit. But then each subgroup within the church or ministry is free to develop more specific focus within, and aligned with, the overall broad vision. The initial broad vision for the organization is essentially unilateral; there is minimal dialogue. The dialogue increases as the scope is narrowed to individual ministries, and individuals within those ministries. Individual leaders within the organization should dialogue with the primary vision carrier as they define their own specific place and purpose.

The degree to which the establishment of the vision is a dialogue is relative to the broadness of the vision as well as to the following:

You may have the highest purpose in the world, but if you don’t share that vision with your constituents, and do it in such a way that it captures their hearts, they will not follow you.

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