May 13, 2009

Focused Follow Through

Written by Boyd Bailey

Focused Follow Through… “A discerning man keeps wisdom in view, but a fool’s eyes wander to the ends of the earth.” Proverbs 17:24

Wise leaders focus on follow through, and do not wander around detached from the details. Details are stepping-stones to success or, if ignored, stumbling blocks to failure. Discernment keeps you systematically focused on a sequence of tasks that assure the implementation of every point in a project. You are wise when you promise less and deliver more. Indeed, focused leaders who follow through can be trusted with more.

If the leader is distracted by the next new idea he will not have the energy or mental capacity to follow through with the most strategic pending project. It is a naïve leader who thinks he or she can delegate their way away from staying engaged in the execution of mission critical initiatives. Every week, or even daily, your team needs to hear from you discerning questions that increase their accountability. Follow through engages.

How is the progress related to the agreed upon timeline for completion? What obstacles are in the way, and how can they be removed? Is the cost of the project within budget? What did we decide and who is responsible for its implementation? Wise leaders know enough of the details to know what questions to ask. You keep wisdom in view by focusing on a few mission critical strategies. You bring clarity to the course of action.

Teams clamor to follow a wise leader who is focused on follow through. So model the way by doing what you say. Your servant leadership facilitates follow through for the team. Become their barrier breaker, and give them the confidence to carry on. Follow through creates creditability. Above all, focus on the Lord and follow through with what He tells you to do. Faith follows through. “Am I a leader worth following, because I follow through?” “Can I be trusted with more, because I have been faithful with what I have?” Perhaps you say “no” more, and “yes” less. Jesus said, “Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one.” (Matthew 5:37).

Related Readings: Psalm 119:37; Proverbs 15:14; John 7:17; 1 John 2:16

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