April 25, 2019
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DR#: 17 The Leader’s Responsibility: Identifying Potential Leaders


Deciding to form potential leaders and following through by creating a climate conducive to their development are crucial first steps in developing future leaders in our charism. Identifying those people in our schools who have the qualities and the commitment to serve in leadership roles and forming the next generation of leaders is your responsibility.

In Developing The Leaders Around You, John Maxwell opens chapter three on “Identifying Potential Leaders” with the contention: “There is something much more important and scarce than ability: It is the ability to recognize ability.” For those of us who serve in leadership roles in a Brothers of the Sacred Heart school seeking to expand our gifts in the formation of the leaders who will follow us, the ability to lead in the charism of the Brothers of the Sacred Heart and to identify others who can do the same are crucial tasks.

In this directed reading, you will learn about one model for assessing the current leadership qualities of potential leaders and consider the qualities Maxwell suggests be looked for in leaders. The questions for journaling will challenge you to apply the principles offered in chapter three of the text to your current leadership role and school setting.

Through this directed reading exercise, participants will:

  • understand the importance of assessing the leadership needs you are responsible for filling;
  • become familiar with one scale for the assessment of leadership qualities of potential leaders and apply that scale to colleagues you feel have leadership potential;
  • gain a deeper understanding of the qualities to look for in a potential leader and ways to discern the presence of those          qualities.
  • Developing The Leaders Around You, by John Maxwell, Chapter Three: “Identifying Potential Leaders”
Options for Additional Readings
  • André Coindre: Writings and Documents 1 – Letters 1821-1826; pages 7-46
  • Jesus CEO: Using Ancient Wisdom for Visionary Leadership; Strength of Relationships section; pages 175-292
Suggestions for Journal Reflection
  1. To whom do you attribute your identification as a potential leader in the charism of the Brothers of the Sacred Heart? What were the circumstances of his or her nurturing you in your leadership potential?
  2. Use the Assessment of Current Leadership Qualities (For Potential Leaders) and score yourself at two different times in your leadership development: first, when you think you first may have been considered “leadership material” and again right now. How do your scores compare? In the areas where you have improved, how have the improvements happened? Who helped you develop these abilities? How?
  3. Now use the same scale and complete it for one or two colleagues you feel you know well who are not currently in leadership positions. How do these scores compare to your own? How would you go about helping these colleagues further develop their abilities specifically as they work and potentially lead in a Brothers of the Sacred Heart school? That is, consider how you would help them grow in their ability to lead in the charism.

Reflect quietly on the following Gospel passages related to the selection and empowering of the apostles. As you reflect, consider your role as a disciple of Christ and of the charism of the Brothers of the Sacred Heart. Consider also your role selecting and empowering others to be the same.

“He named twelve as his companions whom he would send to preach the good news…” 
Mark 3:14

“As he was walking along the Sea of Galilee he watched two brothers, Simon now known as Peter, and his brother Andrew, casting a net into the sea. They were fishermen. He said to them, ‘Come after me and I will make you fishers of men.’”
Matthew 4:18-19

“Jesus now called the Twelve together and gave them power and authority to overcome all demons and to cure diseases. He sent them forth to proclaim the reign of God and heal the afflicted. Jesus advised them: ‘Take nothing for the journey, neither walking staff nor traveling bag; no bread, no money. No one is to have two coats.’”
Luke 9:1-3

“It cannot be like that with you. Anyone among you who aspires to greatness must serve the rest, and whoever wants to rank first among you must serve the needs of all.”
Matthew 20:26-27

“It was not you who chose me, it was I who chose you to go forth and bear fruit. Your fruit must endure, so that all you ask the Father in my name he will give you.”
John 15:16

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