In 1 Timothy the Apostle Paul advises on the qualities of those selected to be in leadership positions. In Chapter 3 of 1 Timothy, verses 1 through 13, we see the qualities and characteristics prized for leaders in the church, there are important parallels that we can draw from these in selecting our organization’s leadership team members.

1 Timothy 3:1
“This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.”

Professional Perspective of the Job:
The person must want the responsibility of the job he/she seeks; the higher the position, the more responsibility and accountability there is to accept. The person must not only desire the job (rank and prestige) but to do the work well. For key positions these individuals also need to be able to lead and manage.

Crosscheck Points:
•    Leadership ability
•    Management capability
•    Responsibility
•    Accountability
•    Quality work

1 Timothy 3:2–5
2 “A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; 3 Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; 4 One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; 5 (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)”

Professional Perspective of the Job:
In 1 Timothy 3:2–5, Paul delves into the personal behaviors and choices of lifestyle of the leader. In looking at the specific behaviors mentioned in these verses they point to characteristics that tell us much about the person and today apply equally to men and women. How a person acts reveals much about his or her character and how they will interact in the workplace.

Crosscheck Points:
•    Patient
•    Attentive
•    Serious
•    Generous
•    Teacher

1 Timothy 3:6-13
6 Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.
8 Likewise must the deacons be grave, not double tongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre; 9 Holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience. 10 And let these also first be proved; then let them use the office of a deacon, being found blameless. 11 Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things. 12 Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well. 13 For they that have used the office of a deacon well purchase to themselves a good degree, and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus.

Professional Perspective on the Job:
In these verses Paul directed Timothy to look for experienced leaders who recognize that leadership comes with expectations and will require assistance. People who know that you can take pride in the results you get but pride of position leads to failure. These leaders also need to be straightforward in speech and be honest and truthful. A leader should again be self-disciplined in his behavior and not driven by greed – a love of money. Leaders should serve with a heart of Love for God and for others. Each leader should be of strong faith that has been tested and affirmed through experience.

Crosscheck Points:
•    Good behavior – keeps the commandments
•    Controlled and disciplined
•    Not given to violence or envy
•    Demonstrated leadership ability at home – if the home is healthy, then the ability to have solid healthy workplace is improved
•    Humble
•    Experienced
•    Faith-based
•    Loves God
•    Background without blemish
•    Mindful of language and witness

Organizational leaders have the critical role of keeping the entity on the right track to serve customers, get the work done, and lead the people in doing their jobs well and within the boundaries of Biblical values, precepts, and commandments.

Selecting your leadership team, and any member of your team, is critical to the ultimate success of your organization, the satisfaction of your customers, and having workforce that is willing and able to do things the right way for the right reasons. Look for people who are principled, experienced, and who share the core values of your organization. Set standards for selection and for continued performance and your will get results.

Author:  Lea A. Strickland, MBA CMA CFM CBM GMC
Copyright ©2012 Lea A. Strickland
All Rights Reserved

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