Why We Should All Be More Like the Jesuits

jesuits leadership May 03, 2023

Let’s talk about leadership.

In particular, let’s look at a group of leaders who have a great deal to teach us who are called to lead during these challenging times. The leaders I’m referring to are the Jesuits.

The leadership practice of the Jesuit's has a lot to teach us about living out our calling with courage, adaptability, and the readiness to help others change and grow through transition.

These thoughts come from a book I’ve revisited but still very applicable today. The book is by author Chris Lowney and is entitled "Heroic Leadership: Best Practices from a 450-Year-Old Company That Changed the World." If you haven't read it, pick up a copy. 

General Thoughts on Leadership

When you look at what the Jesuits believed about leadership some key underlying principles stand out:

  • We’re all leaders and we’re leading all the time – either leading well or poorly.
  • All leadership springs from within and is first and foremost an inside...
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The Undistracted Leader - How to live with less distractions in your life

distraction leadership Feb 01, 2023

In a world of distraction, there is a pathway forward. In this video, Cam talks about the three R's required to live with less distractions and how to stay focused in your life and leadership.

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Why Wait at Wisdom's Doorway?

[The following is the transcript of this week’s video. It’s not word for word but a close representation of what Cam said in his video. This transcript is provided for those of you who are unable to watch the video or would prefer to read the message instead of listen to it].

We are living in a time of transition. And I’m talking not only about the kind a congregation goes through during a pastoral change. As I've talked to people and looked around is that all of us are dealing with transition on multiple levels. We're dealing with it personally. We're dealing it with it in our families. We're dealing with it in our communities, in the congregations we work with with or without pastors.

And as I've wrestled with being a resilient leader — someone who can be there for people and provide guidance, insight, and wisdom, I've been looking for a way to stay strong on the inside so that my outside world can be effective and sustainable.

I have a...

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Six Habits that Spell Love L.I.S.T.E.N.

John Wayne once said, “You're short on ears and long on mouth.” I’m not sure who John was talking to but it could certainly have been me.

How about you? Do you ever find yourself short on ears and long on mouth?

Listening is one of the most loving things you and I can do at home, with our friends, and in the places where we lead and seek to make a kingdom difference. Paul Tillich agrees: “The first duty of love is to listen.”

Paul said, “Love cares more for others than for self…[love] doesn’t force itself on others, isn’t always me first…”

What gets in the way of effective listening

  1. We have our own interests (Phil. 2)
  2. It’s hard work
  3. We’re too busy to take the time required to really listen
  4. We have unresolved issues of our own lives that get in the way (ie. hurt, stress, insecurity, the need to be listened to)
  5. We feel like the person only wants to talk and isn’t open to my input
  6. We loose control of...
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Are You a Soldier or a Scout?

Are you more like a soldier or a scout?

A soldier’s job is to protect and defend a position. A scout’s job is to seek out and explore new possibilities. Two distinct approaches with very different outcomes.

In his book, The Book of Beautiful Questions, Warren Berger suggests that scout like behavior gives a leader a definite advantage.

During times of change and transition, this is especially true. We need flexibility and approach situations as scouts who are on the look out for new possibilities, new ideas, and new ways forward.

The Intellectual Humility of a Scout

“The mindset of a scout is rooted in curiosity. Scouts are more likely to say they feel pleasure when they learn new information or solve a puzzle. They’re more likely to feel intrigued when they encounter something that contradicts their expectations.”*

Leaders with scout-like behavior have what’s called intellectual humility.

Intellectual humility is “a state of openness...

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