Leadership Blog | Jim Gordon
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EMPOWERED LEADERSHIP

understand yourself • influence others • lead the way

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  • What Makes an Effective Leader?

    A predisposition represents your natural bent, your primary inclination—what you tend to do or think or say, or how you tend to act.

  • legacy

    Legacy and Influence

    Maybe it’s my age.  Perhaps it’s simply the dawning of a new realization. Regardless of the origin for this motivation and drive, the need for establishing legacy is taking center stage for me. My ancestry is very blurred: I knew my maternal grandmother, but met...

  • Are You Disconnected From History?

    Social scientists tell us that one of the unique characteristics of Western culture in our generation is an increasing disconnection with our history and heritage. Those connections used to provide a sense of identity, a sense of participation in a type of cultural legacy that...

  • Understanding Yourself

    Empowered leadership has three critical components—included in my website’s byline: Understand Yourself. Influence Others. Lead the Way Influencing and leading come naturally for many of us: to some degree, it seems to happen automatically with those with some inherent leadership skills. The difficult part is understanding...

  • principles

    Why I Read “Principles” by Ray Dalio

    Here are a few of my observations as I am halfway through reading Dalio’s book, Principles. Dreams + Reality + Determination = Success   Ray Dalio started his company, Bridgewater Associates, out of his 2-bedroom apartment. Over forty years later, Fortune Magazine says Bridgewater is...

  • What’s in My Briefcase these Days?

    Like many of you, I’m sure, I usually try to read a few books simultaneously. I keep the current few books in my computer briefcase and basically take them with me everywhere I go. Even though I may not read them—I frequently see them and...

  • Don’t Wait for the Eulogy to Say Thank You!

    A very small percentage of people have had Mark Twain’s experience—who, though very much alive, was reported to have died. He memorialized (pardon the pun) this experience in 1897 with his pithy statement, “The rumours of my death have been greatly exaggerated!” It’s one thing...

  • memories

    Making Memories

    I recently attended a retirement party for a good friend of mine; in fact, my friend and I started our teaching careers at the same time. I moved on to another vocation, while my friend—older than myself—remained in education, and has now just retired. Attending...

  • The Gospel in Chairs

    In this video presentation, there are 3 parts: I begin with a short and simple version of the Gospel story. Two theological points about the nature of God, and a Biblical review of some of our commonly-held misconceptions are examined. I conclude with a more...

  • time

    Where has Time Gone?

    Today marks my 46th spiritual birthday! Raised in a non-religious home, I attended church only once (that I can remember) prior to becoming a Christian in High School. The family joke was that my dad should have been a preacher—because no one used the name...

  • grace

    The Last 10% of The Grace Message

    Grace is the true Gospel! It is scandalous, and it is personified in the person of Jesus! It is the revelation of grace that changed my life and became the framework upon which my understanding and experience rest. Since we live in a culture that...

  • presents

    Presents Wrapped-Up in Work and Trouble

    Hebrews 10:35-36 Therefore, do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. For you have need of endurance [patience], so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise.  Can you picture this? • Your Christmas gift is not...

  • follow-through

    Breakthrough Requires Follow-Through

    Confidence to receive what God has in store involves simple follow-through. Live in God’s will. Expect the promise, with patience.   Hebrews 10:35-36 Therefore, do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. For you have need of endurance [patience], so that after you...

  • Questions that are Unanswerable

    Essentially, I was in shock with questions filling my mind! I was driving towards London University Hospital, and thoughts were racing through my mind, as I attempted to keep my composure. Is she going to pull through? What happens if Carrie dies? We have nine...

  • What Do You Do When All Hell Breaks Loose?

    When cataclysm comes knocking and there’s little time to even think how to react, what do you do? What if: Your child is diagnosed with an incurable disease Your spouse tells you he wants a divorce You receive news that your job is terminated and...

  • Grace-Based Leadership: Hiring Staff

    Recently, a friend of mine leading a small charity (small only in staff size, huge in terms of impact!) inquired about the rubric I used when assessing potential staff hires. In our organization, staff is everything: we will succeed or fail based on our staff!...

  • Enter The Dream

    A dream from God could be defined as the preferred future He desires us to experience. Unlike our dreams—that may be little more than fanciful wishes and unrealistic aspirations— God’s dreams represent what could happen if we let Jesus have His way with us! I...

  • The Leadership Course Experiment

    A few months ago, a team of us designed a 9-week leadership course with an in-class component and a guest-speaker component. During the in-class time we focused on Andy Stanley’s book, Next Generation Leader, and followed with our Speakers’ Forum that featured a 45 minute...

  • Sharpen the Saw

    This phrase is from Stephen Covey’s classic, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and is actually quoting Abraham Lincoln. The book is a must-read for everyone–if you don’t have the book, you need to go and get it! Covey’s 7th habit is Sharpen the...

  • Welcome The Plateau

    As much as the indicators of organizational plateauing, left unattended, are harbingers of bad things to come, even the best of leaders meets them from time-to-time. When you’re actually waiting for the warning light on the dashboard to start flashing, its appearance will most certainly...

  • The Dreaded Plateau

    Many leaders recognize that growing and developing, as well as plateauing and declining, are part of the natural growth cycles that occur with any living thing—both organic and organizational. These growth cycles may refer to intimacy within a couple’s marriage experience, sales numbers in a...

  • When You Know You’re Not Enough

    The work of leaders is to inspire others with vision, build a team of like-minded people, strategize a plan to move the cause forward and keep reminding the team about the “Why” of their efforts and actions. With all of that in mind, though, there...

  • Leadership Equity – the force of radical commitment

    To successfully lead anything significant–a family, an organization, or even a country–requires many things, but the one critical component is wholehearted commitment to the end goals of the endeavour. This commitment level establishes the the leader’s emotional equity and actually draws the best out of...

  • Leaders Go First

    Although it is not a new concept, and certainly not original to me (check out similar thoughts in Andy Stanley’s book, Next Generation Leader) potential leaders need to acquire this leadership trait soon on in their journey! Actually, going first is the very definition of...

  • Leadership 101: Meek and Lowly of Heart

    Matthew 11:28-30 (KJV)    Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. [29] Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto...

  • Pursuing God’s Great Dream for Your Life

    Identity. Until we settle the universal identity problem, we will not enter and experience God’s dream. It is indeed a universal problem, because all of us feel the messages of shame relentlessly bombarding our hearts and minds telling us we are not loved, not worthy,...

  • No-Default Living Book

    I am very excited to announce the completion of a six-year project: the publishing of my new book: No-Default Living: Pursuing God’s Great Dream for Your Life! This book is the result of serious self-reflection concerning many areas over many years. My conclusion? Too often,...

  • Levels of Leadership in Acts 1-7: Part 2

    Part 2: Fathers Developing as Leaders Going to the next level of fatherhood, involves applying these same leadership steps from Acts 1-7 to fatherhood Acts 1: Fatherhood is about the Call and Commission The call is the sober realization that God has a destiny for...

  • Levels of Leadership in Acts 1-7: Part 1

    Using the development of leaders as we see it portrayed in Acts 1-7, we’re going to try to define the process that took flawed, weak men—normal kind of guys in many ways, and transformed them into men who fathered the fledgling church to become a...

  • Keys to Influence Part 2: Overcoming Shame

    Recently I attended a number of seminars given by Thomas Rauchenstein as he presented his research about shame and its impact, along with reflections on his personal journey of overcoming shame. Shame is an issue all of us need to deal with. False shame is an...

  • Keys to Influence Part 1: Towels, Wristwatches, and Donuts

    In the region I live there are two high schools: all of my nine children have attended one or the other of the schools for various reasons. I have had the opportunity to serve at different times on the Parent Councils of both of the...

  • The Greatest Test of a Leader

    Not wanting to sound too dramatic, may I simply say that I have known, worked with, observed and studied, or rubbed shoulders with some extremely terrible leaders as well as some absolutely excellent leaders! May I also be quick to say that my appreciation and...

  • Invest and Invite

    Invest and Invite. The Antidote to Selfishness! Life can be self-absorbing: no doubt about it! Normally, it doesn’t take long before everything in our little world is about us and ours…not so intrinsically bad until it is exclusively about us and ours. Most often, this...

  • Working Hard to Stop Working So Hard

    I’m Working Hard to Stopping Working So Hard, So I Can See God Work. Is that confusing? Let me try to explain… As a pastor, I am obsessed with transformation! There are few things that get me as excited as seeing Jesus at work bringing...

  • The Leadership Spectrum

    A spectrum can be defined as a continuum of characteristics over a range of distance or time. We rarely refer to leadership in reference to a spectrum or continuum unless, of course, we’re talking about something like 360 degree evaluation (which involves our supervisors (above),...

  • Shortcuts in Life

    There are hundreds of time-saving, money-saving, and stress-reducing short cuts available to make life better for all of us. We’d be foolish not to look for them and use as many of them as possible! Let there be no question, though, that the most important...

  • The Discipline Thing

    Discipline seems to be something few people want, and yet everyone needs! From a Christian perspective, self-discipline is the act of restricting ourselves from habits or actions that others freely engage in, and/ or, committing ourselves to a course of action that others do not...