Community leaders face the difficulty of tending to both the routine obstacles, as well as the greater picture. Not only are these individuals coordinating and managing their communities on the micro level, but they must also consider how geography, employment, the economic status of community members, class welfare, and unique obstacles impact an individual community. A large part of being a great leader is distinguishing values, being responsible, and demonstrating integrity.
Unearth the Talent of Your Neighbors
Identify individual strengths in your community, and put those strengths to work for the betterment of the community. Leaders within a community frequently have to pull talent from where they live, and they rarely can freely select supporters, they must work with what they have -which means scouring the community for identified and unidentified talent. It’s meaningful to the community to see that their personal contribution has helped to bring about change.
There’s always at least two strong-minded individuals within a given group. Rather than allowing that ego to roam wild and potentially poison the team, delegate. Offer responsibility to energetic people who are willing to go above and beyond. Balance the needs of the overall group by taking into consideration the time and availability of your cohort. Make sure you’re all on task by focusing the work.
Involve The Entire Team
One person can’t do it all in a partnership, and that’s true when comes to organizing things for a whole community. While one person may be a community leader, community leadership means that it all shouldn’t fall on one person. Efficient leaders should be able to lean on the entire community for the completion of tasks.
Motivate and Mobilize
Motivate and inspire your team when undertaking big projects. You can do this by showing appreciation for efforts when assigning them work.
Get Your Hands Dirty
Don’t leave all of the hard work to the team, after all; you’re not a dictator. You must get down into the muck with the team, and cooperate with them get things done. If you’re organizing a community garbage clean up, be sure that you’re prepared to roll up your sleeves and participate.
Uphold policies, procedures, and processes –and be sure that you’re committed to following those rules. Leading by example means holding oneself accountable if you’ve done something. It’s the only way to keep the team honest. The group is more likely to hold themselves to a certain standard if their leader does.
Your current leadership team is important, but a key to continuity is to look to the future and know who you’ll appoint. Find members of the next generation who can continue to do the work and handle the messaging.
Mentor New Leaders
When you appoint a new team, be prepared to train them. Raise them with your thoughts on success and leadership, so that they can value self-leadership and self-responsibility. Be sure to teach them the fundamentals of mobilizing and guiding others, as well as the principles of facilitating solutions, and practicing good leadership.