Sunday, February 26, 2012

Wise Leaders

I believe wisdom is absolutely essential for good leadership.  Leadership demands consistent decision-making.  King Solomon of the Bible was a great leader who is also universally considered the wisest man who has ever lived.  King Solomon applied leadership principles that are as relevant and powerful today as they were in biblical times.  From him we can learn the characteristics of a wise leader.  Let me mention a few in this article.

Wise Leaders are Learners
Solomon said, “A wise man will listen and increase his learning, and a discerning man will obtain guidance.”  Leaders are learners.  Solomon understood that wise leaders value personal growth and development.  He also understood that leadership development is a process not an event.  He stated, “Listen to counsel and receive instruction so that you may be wise later in life.”  Solomon understood that wisdom doesn’t occur overnight.  It takes time to grow and develop to be a wise leader.

Wise Leaders Listen
Solomon said, “A fool’s way is right in his own eyes, but whoever listens to counsel is wise.”  Wise leaders understand the value of counsel.  Wise leaders understand that one of us is not as smart as all of us.  Wise leaders seek out counsel from others.  They listen to the ideas, thoughts, and opinions of others before making a major decision.

Wise Leaders Value Wisdom
Wise leaders not only listen, but they are careful in selecting to whom they listen.  Solomon said “A mocker doesn’t love one who corrects him; he will not consult the wise.”  Wise leaders want to listen to and learn from those who are wiser than themselves.

Wise Leaders Value Correction
Solomon said “Don’t rebuke a mocker, or he will hate you; rebuke a wise man, and he will love you. Instruct a wise man, and he will be wiser still.”  Wise leaders want to know when they are headed in the wrong direction.  Wise leaders want people in their lives who will lovingly hold them accountable.  Wise leaders desire to have those around them who will steer them back in the right direction when they get off course.  The mark of wisdom is not in never making mistakes, that’s an impossibility.  Even King Solomon made mistakes.  The mark of wisdom valuing and receiving correction given when one has made a mistake.

Solomon says:"Without wise leadership, a nation is in trouble; but with good counselors there is safety."  These words are as true today as they were when he wrote them thousands of years ago.  Be a wise leader.  Be a learner, listen, seek the wisdom of other wise leaders, and value correction.