I’ve been working a lot this summer on a very special event that I love called The 20 Leadership Camp. It is a faith-based youth leadership camp where I’ve seen the students really learn more about themselves as leaders. This camp, we asked the kids to focus on two words.
1. Their leadership strength/characteristic they are best at and want to continue to strengthen.
2. A leadership trait or their weakness that they want to improve.
During the camp and the team-building activities, they were each suppose to be working on their words.
My words were enthusiasm and decision-making.
Funny story: while getting ready for this camp, I’d really discovered my weakness/weaknesses; in fact, Murr helped me pinpoint them in an indirect way. Decision-making was an easy one to spot. Not that I can’t make a decision, but I’d rather someone else make the decision, especially if I trust them more as a leader like Murr or Eller. As we got ready for camp and during camp, Murr would just tell me to make a decision. He even gave me a motto/advice, ” The best decision you can make is the right decision. The second best decision you can make is the wrong decision, and the worst decision you can make is not making a decision at all”.
The second weakness that appeared was impatience or getting ahead of myself. I would always ask Murr or anyone a lot of questions before they were necessary. I realize that this isn’t always a bad trait because it is good to spot problems before they arrive, but with me, I’m likely to bombard a person with question or ask one that they were just about to answer. Fact: I like to know what is going on when sometimes I just need to let someone else handle it.
Now, the funny part is that my students are the ones who really taught me about these weaknesses because some of them were worse than me, and, honestly, it would drive me crazy at times. For example, all of the students liked to know what was going on, so I heard a ton of questions like the following:
What are we doing now?
What game is this?
What is next?
Should we do this?
What is happening tonight?
When does that start?
What are you teaching us?
When I started getting hit with all these questions, I literally laughed because I knew they sounded like me. At one point, I looked at a team of students and said, “Alright, I want you guys to work on something with me because even I struggle with it. I want you to resist asking questions, trust me, and I guarantee you will find out, just wait a second.”
I also had to experience my students struggling with being indecisive during a particular game. It was a game where I had to wait on them to make a decisions before I could do anything to help them. As a volunteer, I have to let the students work through the activity and learn mostly on their own. Oh, but how at that time I want to just make all the decisions for them. It was probably hilarious to see me stressed out a bit about the whole thing.
Leadership Lessons Learned:
1. Sometimes you don’t have to know everything that is going on; sometimes you just need to let someone else worry about something. AKA: be patient with questions.
2. Being decisive is important. It helps things run smoother and for things to get accomplished sooner.
And both of them helps Stephanie’s piece of mind 🙂
Have you learned any lessons in leadership lately?