Jesus was a leader & a mentor. In fact, He was a great trainer & mentor. He took an eclectic group of men & trained them, not only to continue the ministry He began but develop it into a long lasting, thriving organization that continues today. This was not easy. The group was not just eclectic, they were, well, let’s just say most of them were not the ones you would pick if you were creating a world changing organization!
As a leader, Jesus set an example for His disciples, modeling the behavior He want them to copy. As a mentor, He encouraged them to test the skills He taught them, then worked with them to strengthen those skills & make them even better.
You don’t have to be a Christian to appreciate the leadership & mentoring skills of Jesus. Business books have been written, sharing insights into His abilities & offering ways to incorporating those skills into the business world.
While leadership training & development have been hot topics in recent years, mentoring has been largely ignored. This is a major mistake. A leader can’t be fully developed simply through leadership training. Practical experience must be coupled with training. In order for that experience to be most effective, a mentor needs to walk beside the developing leader, offering advice & encouragement along the way.
Unfortunately, a new leader is usually given the training & then sent out to perform, learning over a long period of time by trial & error. For many new leaders, the only mentoring they receive is in the form of discipline when they make the inevitable mistakes.
This situation is even worse for the volunteer leader in the church or organization. In business, there is at least SOME training & guidance. Volunteers are simply given the materials that have been passed down from one leader to the next, patted on the back & told half heartedly, “If you need anything, call me!” They never call. They never know what to ask or how to begin or how this could happen to them. For this reason, many churches have a hard time recruiting leaders & an even harder time keeping them.
In this series, I’m sharing 5 simple steps to use when mentoring new leaders. They don’t take much time, they just take follow-up & consistency. I developed these steps by studying the method Jesus used to prepare the disciples for leadership. Not all the men He chose as His disciples were born leaders. Jesus trained them & mentored them during their time together, creating leaders that went on to begin & build a thriving organization.
Have you been mentored or mentored someone else? How was the experience for you? Do you have questions about mentoring? Share them with us in the comments.
Training & mentoring leaders is the way to empower your organization & ensure the continuation of your programs. It is worth all the time & effort you put into the process considering all the benefits you reap!