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Rethinking Leadership in Troubled Times
Stats: 2,660 words / Reading Time: 13.30 mins

Published: Thursday, 27th August 2020

By: Obayomi Abiola Benjamin

Rethinking Leadership in Troubled Times is read 1.8K times on CentreNDL.org 1.8K
  

RETHINKING LEADERSHIP IN TROUBLED TIMES

How Great Leaders Respond In Period of Unforeseen Crises


Listen To Podcast: Rethinking LEADERSHIP In Troubled Times: How GREAT LEADERS Respond In Period Of Unforeseen CRISIS

The last couple of months has been a challenging one for a lot of people across the world, especially for leaders. The reason is because a number of adjustments needed to take place in the shortest period of time as a result of the Coronavirus Pandemic that has crippled many activities around the world.

 

For leaders, many of them needed to take some drastic decisions as to how to adjust to the realities of the pandemic so that their organizations or countries would be able to mitigate the aftermath of the lockdowns that has taken place. Because of this, we saw leaders who were under immense pressure to act even within the shortest timeframe that they have.

 

One thing you must realize in leadership is that the capacity of a leader is put to test by what he or she is able to do in troubled or difficult time. Solomon wrote in Proverbs 24:10 (TPT) that “if you faint when under pressure, you have need of courage.” Many leaders do well when there is no crisis or problems in sight. They are calm, they take their time to think over a situation or matter before they take their decisions, and all of that.

 

However, what happens when the matter requires that you act right there and then on the spot, how would your coping mechanisms as a leader help you to lead your organization or your country out of such dilemma? In this podcast, I want to give us a number of things to do as leaders when we are grappling for breath or cope in challenging or troubled times.

 

The first thing you must do as a leader is TO NEVER LET YOUR HEART BE TROUBLED. The moment you allow your heart to be troubled over the crisis, it gives you little or no time to think about how to get yourself and your organization or your country out of the crisis. Let me give you a case study in Matthew 8:23-27 about Jesus Christ, the greatest leader of all time, and His disciples. The Bible says:

 

“Now when He got into a boat, His disciples followed Him. 24 And suddenly a great tempest arose on the sea, so that the boat was covered with the waves. But He was asleep. 25 Then His disciples came to Him and awoke Him, saying, and “Lord, save us! We are perishing!” 26 But He said to them, “Why are you fearful, O you of little faith?” Then He arose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm. 27 So the men marveled, saying, “Who can this be, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?”

 

Did we see what Jesus did? When His disciples eventually got His attention by waking Him up from sleep, He never joined them in their fear about how they were going to perish. Jesus simply woke up, spoke to the wind and everything went back into normal. The moment you allow trouble to take over your heart as a leader during a time of crisis, it then gives you little or no room to think about how to lead your way out of it. So, what do you do? Simply calm down and look at the crisis, and then possible ways to get out of it would begin to flood your heart and your mind.

 

The second thing you must do as a leader is TO INVESTIGATE THE ORIGIN OF THE CRISIS. You need to find out where it is coming from, if it is within or it is external. If it is coming from within, it would be a lot easier to quickly nip in the bud. But if it is coming from outside, you would then quickly know what to do and where to begin to put an end to it from. Let me give us a case study. In the book of Jonah 1:4-8, the Bible says:

 

“But the Lord sent out a great wind on the sea, and there was a mighty tempest on the sea, so that the ship was about to be broken up. 5 Then the mariners were afraid; and every man cried out to his god, and threw the cargo that was in the ship into the sea, to lighten the load. But Jonah had gone down into the lowest parts of the ship, had lain down, and was fast asleep. 6 So the captain came to him, and said to him, “What do you mean, sleeper? Arise, call on your God; perhaps your God will consider us, so that we may not perish.”7 And they said to one another, “Come, let us cast lots that we may know for whose cause this trouble has come upon us.” So they cast lots, and the lot fell on Jonah. 8 Then they said to him, “Please tell us! For whose cause is this trouble upon us? What is your occupation? And where do you come from? What is your country? And of what people are you?”

 

From those verses, you would see that God was actually the origin of their crisis because there was a fugitive of God’s presence inside that ship, and he was not supposed to be there in the first place. So, in order to get rid of him, God allowed the sea to rage against them. But there is something you would notice in this case study. The verse 5 shows us that the mariners were beginning to investigate the cause of the crisis. They threw out some of the goods to lighten the ship, and they also consulted their gods, trying to find out where the crisis could have emanated from. And if you read from verse 9 downwards, you would see that they eventually got to the origin of the crisis.

 

Let us read Jonah 1:9-15. The Bible says:

“So he said to them, “I am a Hebrew; and I fear the Lord, the God of heaven, who made the sea and the dry land.” 10 Then the men were exceedingly afraid, and said to him, “Why have you done this?” For the men knew that he fled from the presence of the Lord, because he had told them. 11 Then they said to him, “What shall we do to you that the sea may be calm for us?”—for the sea was growing more tempestuous. 12 And he said to them, “Pick me up and throw me into the sea; then the sea will become calm for you. For I know that this great tempest is because of me.” 13 Nevertheless the men rowed hard to return to land, but they could not, for the sea continued to grow more tempestuous against them. 14 Therefore they cried out to the Lord and said, “We pray, O Lord, please do not let us perish for this man’s life, and do not charge us with innocent blood; for You, O Lord, have done as it pleased You.” 15 So they picked up Jonah and threw him into the sea, and the sea ceased from its raging.”

 

So, after they discovered that Jonah was the source of their crisis, what did they do? Jonah himself told them the way forward. He said to them: “Pick me up and throw me into the sea; then the sea will become calm for you. For I know that this great tempest is because of me.” Even though the men were reluctant to do so, they did not have so many alternatives. And so, they picked up Jonah and threw him into the sea as he himself had said, and the sea ceased from its raging. So, what are we trying to say from this case study? As a leader, when you are facing a crisis period, the second thing you must do is to investigate the source of the crisis, whether it is internally generated or externally generated.

 

But what happens if the crisis is externally generated? What do you do or where do you begin to tackle the crisis from as a leader? The first thing you must do as a leader in this case, is to get your FACTS ASSEMBLED FIRST ABOUT THE CRISIS. If you look at the nations that are worst hit by this coronavirus pandemic, you would discover that their leaders didn’t immediately gather their facts about the virus. They were lackadaisical about it. Some even played politics with it. And by the time they are waking up to see that there is a crisis at hand, the pandemic had deeply penetrated their nations.

 

“So I came to Jerusalem and was there three days. 12 Then I arose in the night, I and a few men with me; I told no one what my God had put in my heart to do at Jerusalem; nor was there any animal with me, except the one on which I rode. 13 And I went out by night through the Valley Gate to the Serpent Well and the Refuse Gate, and viewed the walls of Jerusalem which were broken down and its gates which were burned with fire. 14 Then I went on to the Fountain Gate and to the King’s Pool, but there was no room for the animal under me to pass. 15 So I went up in the night by the valley, and viewed the wall; then I turned back and entered by the Valley Gate, and so returned.”

Nehemiah 2:11-15

 

Nehemiah needed to go round to gather for himself first-hand information about the extent of the damage and the work to be done. He didn’t appoint anyone to do it for him, he simply decided to go gather all the facts that he needed in order to know where to begin tackling the crisis from.

 

After getting your facts assembled first about the crisis, the next thing to do is to GET A TEAM OF COMPETENT PEOPLE alongside yourself as the leader to begin to solve the crisis as it affects your organization or your nation. Let us examine another case study fro that book of Nehemiah 2:17-18 to buttress this point. “Then I said to them, “You see the distress that we are in, how Jerusalem lies waste, and its gates are burned with fire. Come and let us build the wall of Jerusalem, that we may no longer be a reproach.” 18 And I told them of the hand of my God which had been good upon me, and also of the king’s words that he had spoken to me. So they said, “Let us rise up and build.” Then they set their hands to this good work.”

 

In conclusion, as a leader, there are times in your Leadership assignment that unforeseen crisis would come up in your journey of Leadership. What you do in that moment would go a long way to portray you, either as a good leader or as one who does not have the capacity to handle or manage crisis. Never forget, when you are faced with unforeseen crisis, NEVER LET YOUR HEART BE TROUBLED. That is usually the starting point. Then, INVESTIGATE THE ORIGIN OF THE CRISIS, whether it is coming from within your organization or your country, or whether it is external to it. If the crisis is generated internally, as a competent leader that you are, do everything within your power to immediately nip it in the bud.

 

But if the crisis is externally generated, the first thing you will do is to GET YOUR FACTS RIGHT ABOUT THE CRISIS: its origin, its cause, who and what initiated it, et cetera. After this, assemble together A TEAM OF COMPETENT PEOPLE who would swing into action in order to quickly get rid of the crisis.

 

I believe you have learned something.


Thanks for the gift of your time, I am Obayomi Abiola Benjamin!

Feel free to share your thoughts or testimony in the comment box below. I promise to respond to them as soon as possible!

ARTICLES YOU MAY ALSO LIKE:
- Rethinking Leadership in Troubled Times

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Word of Confession: (Optional)

Lord Jesus, I confess to you that I have sinned against the LORD God - in the rebellion of my heart, I have disappointed your expectations on my life. I have fallen from Your grace and followed wrong influences around me. Today, I retrace my steps back to you - and I ask that in your mercy you accept me as your son and give to me (again) the promise of the Father - the Holy Spirit. Lord Jesus, please, come and make my heart your home, and from there rule in the affairs of all men. In Jesus Name I have prayed.

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Your leadership reference matters a lot as a leader. Your leadership reference to a larger extent points people to the direction and the paths you follow.


Published: Obayomi Abiola Benjamin | Friday 7th February 2020


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I am Abiola Benjamin Obayomi, a disciple of Jesus Christ, with a drive to mentor young believers into spiritual maturity. I am a student of God's word and a teacher as well, with passion in the areas of relationship & spiritual development. I am a worshipper, an ardent lover and follower of the Lord Christ.


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