By Dr. Robert Stearns & Dr. Larry Keefauver
In this issue, I’m joined by my dear friend and associate, Dr. Larry Keefauver, in sharing with you some important insights about effective leadership.
Our friend, Dr. Keith Johnson, is called America’s Confidence Coach. One of his favorite sayings when writing or speaking on Leadership is, Get the FUD Out. So, what’s FUD? FUD is: Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt. So, exactly how do we get the FUD out? Well, first it starts with a minds
1) Unsuccessful leaders look for people to follow and serve them. Their actions, if not their words, imply, "Follow me. I am the best." Consequently, leading is all about them—what they want and how others can help them get it. Being around such a leader is draining and demanding.
Effective and successful leaders look for people to serve. Their words and action paint this picture, “How can I serve you? You are the best." Being around a successful servant leader is: energizing, encouraging and enthusing.
When I am trying to find my place as a leader, I use a three step process called triangulation. You’ve seen this process used on the TV shows NCIS, CSI and 24 as the means by which a cell phone’s location is tracked down by establishing three points of reference.
My foundation for successful leadership from my background looks like this:
Leading has a lot to do with loving. Leading has to do with wanting the best – we would say God’s best – for others and yourself. In loving God, others and myself, I want to serve in a way that brings out the best in others as well as myself. It’s a win-win style that encourages people instead of discouraging people. A servant leader finds ways to serve others who are willing follow a leader who is other-centered instead of being self-centered.
What hinders a leader from being successful and effective? Quite simple, it’s FUD!
- Then, get the FUD out…
Again, here are the simple, age-old culprits:
FEAR – of failure, rejection and inadequacy.
UNCERTAINTY- relating to my future, my potential, my ability.
DOUBT– the truth, the product, the service, the leadership, the reality.
The greatest paralysis of Confidence, Commitment & Creativity is fear including The Fear of Failure, The Fear of Rejection, and The Fear of the Unknown
A piece of ancient, biblical wisdom I try to remind myself of often is this: “Perfect love casts out all fear.” Friends, we can only overcome fear with love; with desiring the best for the other person. Simply put, success is: loving God, loving others, and loving yourself.
What about the second aspect of FUD, which is uncertainty. Uncertainty is a mindset of unwillingness and lack. When a leader is stopped by uncertainty, he or she is unwilling to believe reality and unwilling to decide to act upon truth and trust others.
A leader overcomes uncertainty by beginning to trust. Trust the truth, trust your team, God and yourself. Trust and faith overcome uncertainty. Without faith, it’s impossible to fulfill God’s plans and purpose for your life- to serve and to lead God’s way.
The final aspect of FUD is Doubt, which leads to frustration and sometimes depression. Doubt refuses to risk, it rejects the new and will not trust the truth. Doubt sabotages growth while speaking, believing and listening to negative, reports and people. Doubt destroys hope.
The successful servant leader overcomes doubt by choosing hope. Hope is confident assurance that you can finish strong. Hope envisions the goal and walks through the path to get there—inch by inch it’s a cinch, mile by mile it’s a trial. Hope encourages a team—together we are stronger.
What will most encourage and empower you as a successful servant leader is to avoid intimidating through fear, dominating through control, manipulating through abuse and legislating through legalism. Such people destroy relationships and the ability to lead when they use these abusive tools. Instead, be a servant leader who communicates and cares. Be a servant leader who affirms, reproduces, empowers, executes, focuses and finishes.
You can begin maturing and growing in your leadership today by getting the FUD out and choosing to associate with leaders who share your values, attitudes and actions. Look around, find someone to serve and discover that they in turn will team with you to lead others from success to significance in impacting our city, region and culture for good.