10 Leader Traits to Spot in an Unlikely Leader

If you are going to build a great team, you’re going to have to get good at looking through people to their God-given destiny.

leader traits

At any rate, he became more than he was before his encounter with Jesus. If you are going to build a great team, you’re going to have to get good at looking through people to their God-given destiny.

3. Choose people who will go out of their way to get involved in what you’re doing. Zaccheaus didn’t let the fact that he was too short and the crowd too big keep him from seeing Jesus. There are probably some people who are making a major effort to be close to you. Don’t overlook them. If you don’t have to talk them into following, you probably won’t have to talk them into staying.

4. Don’t be so focused on what you are doing that you don’t look up every once in a while. Jesus could have missed Zaccheaus because of the crowd. He paused and looked up. Do you do that? “Who is new? Why are they here? Could this be the person we’ve been praying for to fill a gap in our team?” You’ll never see them unless you look up.

5. Do your homework. Jesus had him at “Zaccheaus.” We love it when somebody who shouldn’t knows our name. Be that person. If possible, study the list. Read the roster. Surprise them. The simple act of knowing their name may be the opening that sets them on a path to their destiny.

6. Don’t be afraid to issue an invitation and challenge right away. Jesus didn’t wait till he’d been to the Newcomers/Membership Class and proven his faithfulness. He invited Zaccheaus to spend the afternoon with him. “And by the way, let’s throw a party at your house.”

7. Don’t be surprised when the old guard gets their undies in a bunch. They are upset that Zaccheaus doesn’t pass the background check. When you take a risk with a promising but raw new leader, there may be some on your team that won’t understand. Be respectful, but sometimes you’ve got to follow your gut.

8. Don’t underestimate the transforming power of food. Jesus invited him to a meal, not a Bible study. Food is disarming, socially inviting and encourages meaningful conversation. Build food into your team building budget. (Better yet, recruit short, rich crooks. They can pay their own way.)

9. People are more likely to respond to grace than rules. Zaccheaus knew the rules. He was more than willing to follow them when extended grace. When you build a culture of grace, you’ll have less to fight about.

10. When salvation comes to the whole household, the potential for multiplication is staggering. I look at my own family as an example. Because someone didn’t overlook the leadership potential in my “short little crook” grandfather, there is a “household” of Surratts reproducing kingdom life all over the planet.

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Greg Surratt
Greg Surratt is the founding pastor of Seacoast Church, one of the earliest adopters of the multi-site model. Located in Mt. Pleasant, SC, Seacoast has been recognized by various media as an innovative and influential thought leader in future strategies for church growth and development. Greg is also a founding board member of the Association of Related Churches.