Leadership Lessons from a Navy SEAL


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There was a point in my life where I would daydream about being part of the Navy SEALs or even part of the Delta Force. There was always something about war movies or even documentaries on war that fascinated me. I think it was the sense of mission and purpose that drew me in and captured my attention.

One of the greatest contexts to learn leadership principles and lessons is in the military. In fact, many people in leadership positions, whether it is in the government or the corporate world, had some experience in the military.

Recently, I was reading an Inc. article where a Navy SEAL and Leadership Under Fire instructor, Rob Roy gave six leadership lessons. I found it interesting that many of these lessons can be applied even to the church and LIFE Group context.

In summary, the six lessons on leadership are:

1) Comfort Zone Busters. Roy says to always make “stretch goals” because we need to learn how to push ourselves. We have to learn how to set high goals. By setting the bar high, it pushes us outside of our comfort zones.

2) Calm Under Pressure. As a leader, many decisions have to be made under pressure. People look to leaders during crisis moments, therefore leaders need to know how to command calmness in order to direct people.

3) Check the Situation. In order to make the right and best decisions, the leader must know exactly what is going on or they will be tempted to make a hasty decision. This is why temporarily stepping back from a situation is helpful to gain perspective.

4) Connect Compassionately. If the people that you are leading know that you are there for them and you are willing to support them, then they will give you their respect and be more open to follow your lead.

5) Cooperate Cohesively. When the people are unified with a strong sense of bond, they are able to work together. There is a greater motivation to accomplish the goal even though there are obstacles, if they are unified.

6) Consistent Convictions.
When people know what you stand for, they will be able to know what to expect from you. Leaders must be willing to take responsibility and lead with convictions. This helps followers to know where you will take them.

These are all biblical principles; therefore, we need to grow in these areas in order for us to be more effective in our leadership. We have to remember that some of these traits are not produced overnight. In fact, some of them are forged through trials and difficulties over a long period of time.

The encouragement for us is that God will give us the grace to grow in these traits. So next time when there are opportunities to display faith, trust, discernment, compassion, unity and conviction, remember that God is trying to grow you as a leader.

Spiritual ENTREPRENEUR, Church EQUIPPER, Leadership EDUCATOR, Ideas EXPERIMENTER & Global EXPLORER who is trying to transform lives and transform the world.
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