Principal components of leadership traverse across any social units. Padilla, (2005) in his book Portraits of Leadership, highlighted a similar pattern of how the six best presidents lead during their tenure as university presidents in the United States of America.
In 2004, I was scheduled to work on a farm about twelve hours per week for the whole semester as a freshman in high school. One day our supervisor called a few of us aside and gave us important principles of leadership that remain with me until now. He said, “Leadership is like farming; when you take care of your workers, they take care of the plants for a successful harvest.”
There are three components of leadership I took away from his speech:
Task Need: Convinced by the advice, we allocated all plots to each member of our group, intending to complete our daily tasks within a given time each day. We also agreed that we would only leave the farm together when all the tasks were completed. It didn’t take long for the fast workers to help the slower ones because of the dismissal from work depending on the whole team’s completion. I remember Jesus sending His disciples two by two for their first evangelistic assignment. Working together increases efficiency and improves relationships. Successful organizations hold collaboration as one of their top organizational competencies. Today, online platforms have improved effective collaboration within organizations.
Group Need: After learning about the importance of taking care of the group. We appointed the less motivated members to collect fruits for the group occasionally. The result was recognition and improved self-esteem for the boys and the celebration of our accomplishment with the little we had. On top of that, we agreed to have fifteen minutes to swim in the river under supervision on our way back to the campus from the school farm. The Bible also records Jesus inviting His disciples to retreat in the mountains to refresh themselves from the toil of evangelism. “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest” (Mark 6:31). Innocent occasional celebrations have the potential to realign, motivate, and unite everyone to accomplish the organizational goals.
Individual Need: The whole semester was enough to know most of our members. It was fun knowing them personally. Since we virtually know a little of everyone, it wasn’t too difficult to identify if they were not well. Sometimes, a listening ear or a pat on the back was all they needed. Jesus spent most of his time preaching and healing. However, he also took time teaching smaller groups and encouraging His disciples.
Lastly, God is a single component that lubricates the proper balance between these three components. God gives wisdom on how to treat workers individually, when is the best time to celebrate, and what strategies are needed to get the work done. The example of Jesus shows us how He empowered His disciples for ministry, created opportunities for retreat, and even encouraged their hearts to move on to accomplish His mission here on earth.