Asking These 20 Questions of Others Will Help You Become a Better Leader

A leader needs to be a learner.

And, the learning needs to be constant. It proves itself to be true over and over again that you can learn from anyone in any leadership position. In fact, some of the greatest leadership lessons I have gained have been from those who felt they were in “lower” positions. The idea of this was driven home for me when LifeWay Research (which I was a part of for three years) did the study for Transformational Church. Many of the pastors that we interviewed based on the health of their church would ask, “Why me? Why are you interviewing a pastor like me in a normal church like this?” What they did not know is just how important their leadership was to the life a church that we needed to learn from.

Leaders, as a group, look for the superstars among our particular type of organization and learn from that perceived top echelon. Pastors are no different. So, my encouragement is that no matter what work you do, learn from everyone you can.

As I’ve been mulling over how I can more intentionally learn from others, I began putting together a list of questions that I hope to pose to more and more people. When I meet other leaders, here’s what I want to know. Please feel free to add in your ideas in the comments section.

1. What book has had the greatest impact on your understanding of leadership?

2. What are the most important “nuts and bolts” lesson that you can give me?

3. What are your reading habits?

4. What blogs do you read on a regular basis?

5. Who are the historical figures who have influenced you the most?

6. What other arenas of leadership to look to learn from?

7. Tell me about the pieces of technology, apps, and software that helps you the most.

8. Did anyone put you through an intentional plan for leadership development? What was the plan?

9. Do you have a plan to intentionally develop yourself as a leader?

10. Do you have a plan to intentionally develop others into leaders?

11. How do you separate yourself effectively from work to rest?

12. What are your main goals in leadership?

13. Describe your process for developing a vision and mission for your organization.

14. What is your daily schedule of work?

15. How do you design and hold a great meeting?

16. Do brainstorming meetings really work? If so, how do you one well?

17. What do you do with a team members who has bad chemistry with the rest of the team?

18. What offenses require you to immediately terminate someone’s employment?

19. What are the best hiring practices and processes you’ve used or seen?

20. How do you admit and fix a problem in your leadership?

20. What do you want to go back and change?

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Philip Nation

Philip Nation

I serve as the pastor at First Baptist Church of Bradenton, Florida and frequently speak at churches and conferences. I earned a Master of Divinity from Beeson Divinity School and a Doctor of Ministry from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. In 2010-2012, I was the national spokesperson for the Back to Church Sunday campaign from Outreach. Over the years, I’ve served as a pastor, minister of education, and a church planter. In 2016, I published Habits for Our Holiness: How the Spiritual Disciplines Grow Us Up, Draw Us Together, and Send Us Out with Moody Publishers. I’ve coauthored two other books: Compelled: Living the Mission of God and Transformational Discipleship: How People Really Grow. I was also the general editor of The Mission of God Study Bible. Along the way, I have written the small-group studies Storm Shelter: Psalms of God’s Embrace, Compelled by Love: The Journey to Missional Living and Live in the Word, plus contributed to The Great Commission Resurgence: Fulfilling God’s Mandate in Our Lifetime.

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COMMENTS

What say you? Leave a comment!

CTCLYT — 01/29/14 9:18 am

The greatest leader of all time was Jesus Christ himself. Simply because he empowered his disciples with knowledge to go out be great leaders themselves. In today's world, leaders dont want to share knowledge, they want to be on top and keep everyone below them. The best leaders share everything they know and give their team members the confidence they need to become leaders themselves. A great leader will believe in you. A great leader will give you freedom to make decisions. A great leader will be very happy for you when you reach the top.

Steve — 01/16/14 12:34 pm

"Do you have a plan to intentionally develop others into leaders?" Great question - I believe this question underscores a key biblical principle. Probably the most overlooked biblical principle in the church today. Jesus empowered His disciples and instructed them to go and do likewise. Nevertheless, Jesus did not abandon nor forsake His disciples, He promised to be with them always. By the power of the Holy Ghost, God’s Word provides lesson after lesson after lesson. In Christ we will never stop learning. Thanks and have a Christ filled day! Steve

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