… Because He never made any!
But as fallible leaders, we will make mistakes and, when we do, we need to take personal responsibility for these mistakes. Owning our errors is the best way to build long-term trust with those we intend to lead. We may experience momentary setbacks, but in the long run, people will follow someone they trust. As long as our mistakes don’t break the trust of our constituents, team, family, or congregation, taking personal responsibility for our mistakes actually strengthens the relationship between leader and follower.
Thank God for the spotless Lamb, that He did not sin nor make mistakes. Yet Jesus still managed to teach us some valuable lessons regarding personal responsibility. For instance, in Luke 12:48 NIV, Jesus tells his disciples that, “From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.”
Comic book superhero extraordinaire, Stan Lee, puts it this way, “With great power comes great responsibility.”
As leaders, we have been entrusted with great power, which means we have great responsibility. We will be held accountable for what we did and did not do as leaders.
- Leaders take personal responsibility not only for their own actions but for the actions of their followers.
- Leaders take personal responsibility for team failures and give credit to the team for successes.
- Leaders never point fingers, blaming someone else when things go wrong.
Imagine sitting through a press conference listening to the head coach of the losing team blame his point guard for missing all his free throw shots. I don’t believe that would sit well with the point guard, team or fans.
Leaders cannot claim, “It’s not my fault; It’s not my job; It’s not my problem.” As the leader, it’s always our fault, it’s always our job, and it’s always our problem.
Taking personal responsibility will build trust with our followers and garner favor with God.