WEEK 5 - Be an “Other”
Before You Get Started
You are halfway through The Eight Best Practices for Developing Female Leaders course. Great job! In this week’s lesson, you’ll be taking a closer look how you, as an individual leader, hold the keys and have the potential to unlock the potential of women on your team and in your church.
Below is this week’s video on Best Practice #5 and your challenge for the week.
We hope you enjoy learning about this week’s Best Practice and we will be praying for you as you develop the female leaders on your team!
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Video Five - Be an “Other”
This Week's Challenge...
This week you have another 2×2 Challenge.
- Think of two “Others” that have made a difference in your life and your growth as a leader. Write a quick notecard or email thanking them for at least two things that you learned or benefitted from them.
- Next, choose two women leaders you know and appreciate. What qualities do you see in them? What about their leadership is making a difference to other people? Take a few minutes and write each of them a card or email telling them at least two things you see in them and why these qualities are important in God’s Kingdom and in your team or church.
Discuss With Your Team...
- To whom are you personally being an “other”? Who else should you mentor, sponsor, or coach?
- How do your church’s informal networks help up-and-coming male leaders? Do female leaders get these same experiences? If not, what needs to change?
- On a scale of 1 to 5, how well are your team leaders mentoring, sponsoring, and providing experienced coaching for your female leaders? What can you do to make this better?
Leadership Network’s Female Leader Groups
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Video - Vonae Ayoub
Vonae is the Director of Stewardship at Christ Fellowship Church in Palm Beach Gardens, FL.
Overview - Week 5
When I think back about how and where I grew up, I am the least likely candidate to be in full-time ministry, especially leading in the early days of the multisite movement at one of America’s largest and fastest-growing churches. It’s highly unlikely that I would be talking to you today or that I would get to work with so many amazing church leaders around the world. And it’s incredibly unlikely that I would be one of the people trying to raise the level of conversation about women leading in the church.
It’s highly unlikely except for a few critical things. Actually, it’s not because of a few critical things. It’s because of a few critical PEOPLE.
In his book, The Power of the Other, Dr. Henry Cloud explains that when we are challenged to grow and perform at higher levels. Just learning the information isn’t enough. We actually need to BECOME better. And that, based on neuroscience, can only happen in the context of truly connected relationships.
Think of how you got to be where you are – I’m sure there were lessons and situations that grew and stretch you. But if you look a little deeper, you’ll see that there are some people that God used to help you process those learning opportunities and encourage you in ways you couldn’t give yourself. These healthy, supportive and positive relationships literally RE-WIRE our brains to develop new capabilities and new ways of thinking and therefore achieve higher levels of performance.
These relationships change the way we view the world and, more importantly, the way we view ourselves IN the world.
Historically speaking, when it comes to leadership development, women have fewer of these “others.” They’ve had less education, fewer resources, and our culture has tended to overlook or even oppress their possibilities.
Think of the women leaders you know. What are the qualities you would use to describe them and their abilities? Maybe some words come to mind like intelligent, strategic, decisive, creative or inspirational.
One of the consequences of not having a lot of leadership “others,” is that women grow up without a lot of positive input about their giftings or personality. Especially because female leaders tend to have qualities that don’t fit into what our culture has applauded as being a woman.
This disconnect between how a woman views herself and who a woman actually is and what she has to offer can be a major barrier to her growth and contribution.
But you have the power to change that for her. You can be an “other” that comes alongside her, builds a trusting connection, and helps her see herself more accurately.
To illustrate this disconnect, I want to show you a video about how women think about their physical appearance versus how they actually look to others. While you are watching this, think about the women leaders you know and how their view of the leadership is different than how others’ may view their potential.
As you can tell, this disconnect between a woman’s view of herself which is reinforced by society, and how she actually is and what she has to offer, runs very deep inside of us. In many ways, these internal challenges are the biggest barriers to a woman being released into her calling.
But, as an “other,” you have the power to speak life and truth into her. This can come in a lot of different forms. In the book, we talk through 3 specific roles that every woman needs – a mentor, a sponsor, and a coach. Depending on your role on the team and own expertise, you can likely be one or more of these to the women on your team. To learn more practically how to do this, read chapter 5 in Developing Female Leaders. You also might consider setting aside some budget money to specifically invest in the women on your team. In male-dominated environments, there is a natural affinity and young leaders are more often offered this kind of organic development. But with a minority such as women, you have to push against the cultural drift and set aside time, money and energy.
But it is worth it.
Not only just for the woman you are investing in, but in the people she will go on to touch and lead. She cannot change these things on her own. She needs an “other.” She needs you.
Have any questions about this masterclass? Please contact Kate Lincoln on our support team. She’ll be happy to assist!