We use models to picture things we cannot otherwise see. We model homes before we build them. We model communities before we develop them. We model processes before we invest in them. We even look for model families, model schools, model everything. So it is not unusual for us to look for models of leadership as well. And we have many to choose from: servant leadership, situational leadership, tribal leadership, creative leadership, progressive leadership, self leadership, total leadership, participative leadership, transactional leadership, transformational leadership, appreciative leadership, even Disney leadership.
There is a leadership model much older than any of the ones listed above. Others have written about it, but most have done so in the context of church leadership. However, Shepherd Leadership applies to leaders in all walks of life, not just ministry. And it focuses on the two key responsibilities of a leader. Like a shepherd, a leader must do two thinks very well: provide direction and protection for the organization and team.
Providing direction involves the creation of clarity around who you are, what you do, where you do it, when you do it, how you do it, why you do it, and for whom you do it.
Providing protection involves the creation of constraints around what might go wrong, where it might go wrong, when it might go wrong, how it might go wrong, why it might go wrong, and who might make it go wrong.
If you are looking for a model of great leadership, look to a shepherd who truly cares for the sheep and you’ll find everything you need to lead from your head and your heart.