6 Qualities of a Future Leader
Published on 30 March 2021
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You are the future! Within you lies something that can make a difference in your world. God, the Creator, holds the future—not fate. However, He does entrust us with free will; whether or not we choose to be in relationship with Him and to live for Him. The decisions you make today will impact your tomorrow, so choose to make your life count!
1. Future leaders have vision
Leadership is all about leading people toward something—a common goal or destination. That is why it is so important to have vision for where you are headed.
Q: What vision do I have?
Q: What can I see that doesn’t exist yet?
Q: What do I see that something could become?
Q: Who do I see that someone could become?
Do you have a vision for your life?
Where there is no prophetic vision the people cast off restraint, but blessed is he who keeps the law.
To ‘cast off restraint’ means living without discipline and boundaries, and wandering aimlessly. When you have no vision, you live without purpose. When you live WITH vision, you set your eyes on the ‘prize’ and start making the right decisions that will lead you to that prize.
As a leader, you carry a collective vision for others and when those around you begin to capture that vision in their own hearts, they too start making good decisions around that end goal.
2. Future leaders have real influence
Leadership is not about a title or position, but more importantly, it is the ability to influence people. A sign of great leadership is when people want to follow you because of the example you set. We all know what it is like to be forced to do something—doing exactly as you are told. It’s far better when we’re inspired to do something.
The word inspire can be broken down into the 2 words, ‘in’ and ‘spirit’. Inspiring others can be likened to putting spirit inside someone by encouraging them and leading by example.
Q: Are you a thermostat or a thermometer? One changes the temperature but the other merely measures it. Which will you be?
While followers complain about their environment, leaders bring the change that they want to see.
3. Future leaders have a ‘hard work’ mindset
here’s no point in having a vision and doing nothing with it. Leaders take ownership of the vision and do whatever it takes to see that vision come to pass. Great leaders don’t shy away from hard work and sacrifice because this is what it takes to build something great.
We all like hearing inspiring stories of heroes winning battles or players overcoming obstacles to win championships. They reigned victorious because they dug deep, became determined and recognised that the cause was worthy of the fight.
There will be a journey to the end goal, but the tenacious and courageous will keep going. Imagine what great things we can accomplish together when we are united in our vision.
4. Future leaders have ‘life’ language
Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.
Too many people complain about the way things are, but leaders speak into the way things will be. Leaders see the vision of tomorrow and paint that vision into being with their words. They see opportunities and potential, and become the solution to the problems they face.
Don’t self-sabotage your future by what you say over yourself and those around you. There is power in your words and declaration, so start declaring God’s promises and allow them to start forming the world you want to see. Let your words be full of encouragement, life and joy.
In stark contrast to the culture of the world, when you begin to speak out the positive changes you want to see in people and circumstances, by faith, choosing to celebrate current blessings and future possibilities, the atmosphere WILL begin to shift and create those realities you desire.
5. Future leaders have great character and integrity.
It is important to be gifted and each of us have been gifted by our Creator! Your gifting is what makes an impact and gives you influence in the world around you. Character, on the other hand, is the foundation of who you are. Leaders never allow their gifting to take them where their character can’t keep them. Your integrity tells the story of who you are when no one is watching. It is the important foundation required to keep the gifting in your life operating, and to maintain the impact of your influence.
In the process of building a house, a builder knows that they have to ensure that the foundation is structurally sound, strong without cracks. If they do not, they take the risk that everything they have built on that foundation may collapse when storms arise. Likewise, when training your body, many choose to neglect the core exercises. Their arms look good, but their ‘core’ is what will support their entire body in the long term.
Don’t bend your character to achieve more influence. You might gain the world but lose your soul in the process. Be a person of your word—a Promise Keeper and person of integrity. Be the same person in public as you are in private. Be trustworthy with your words, money and time. Such character traits reflect who God is and set you apart to have lasting influence for God’s Kingdom.
Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.
6. Future leaders have a genuine heart.
It shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be your slave, even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.
Real leadership is all about serving others, motivated by love. The reason behind service, reveals the heart of any leader. If we lead and serve for personal gain, fame, money or ambition, we will only experience momentary satisfaction, and only in this lifetime. On the other hand, Jesus showed a far better example of leadership—servant leadership. Great humility and genuine love is required in the life of a true servant leader.
Great leaders are invested in the process of discovering the potential in others, developing them and being committed to their discipleship for the long haul.
So, here’s an invitation: Will you rise up and be the future leader that your world needs? Though you may feel unworthy or think that you don’t have what it takes, remember that God Himself, first qualified us. All we need to do is simply surrender and say “yes” to Him. How amazing is that? Above all, God, our good Father, has promised each one of us an exciting, influential and fruitful future.
For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.
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