How Do Young People Become Influencers?

At The Global Leadership Summit 2013, our team asked people to send in any questions they had for the Summit speakers. We had a great response as questions rolled in through Twitter. Now its time to reveal the answers…and they are worth watching.

Watch and learn from Joseph Grenny as he answers the questions: How do young people become influencers?

Do you have any questions for the 2014 Summit faculty? Send us your questions through Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram using the hashtag #GLS14Q for the chance to have one of the Summit faculty answer it at Summit 2014.

3 Ways to Lead Through Easter

Post by Tommy Bowman

1. Prepare For Attacks

Our enemy wants nothing more than to stop you, your team and your church in your tracks during this week. He wants to leave you drained, confused and doubtful. Why waste the time being surprised? Why waste energy being blindsided? Instead, be ready and stand firm. We serve a mighty warrior and a strong deliverer. Prepare for these attacks. (Also, read this letter to church leaders from Mark Driscoll to your team.)

2. Take A Risk

The church invite has received a bad rap the past decade. And while I value relational intelligence, there is no greater season to take a relational risk and give out an old fashioned church invite to a friend. At Mission, we call this week #RiskWeek. Maybe it’s at your Starbucks or favorite breakfast spot. Perhaps it’s just a walk across the street. Take a risk.

3. Plan For Rest

The temptation will be to report back to the office and ride the wave of momentum from Easter. And I’m telling you that you will be fried. You need a sabbath day of rest. You need a day to rest the parts of you that you are called to love God with; our heart, soul, mind and strength. Too often we miss our moments of reflection which lead us to acknowledge the presence of God in our lives. Our intimacy with God, as leaders, cannot afford to miss these moments. Plan for rest.

tommy_bowman1Tommy  is the Directional Leader at Mission Church in the suburbs of Chicago. Tommy’s passion is to take proven leadership values and principles from the business world and implement them into the world of church and church teams. Connect and learn more about Tommy at or @tommybowman.


Read It Right

Excerpt from Crash the Chatterbox by Steven Furtick

I have a friend who works for a leader who is known for being remarkably driven and unusually intense. I asked my friend one time, “Isn’t it hard to work for someone so demanding? How do you deal with it?”

I’ve never forgotten his answer.

He said, “Well, I used to have a tough time with it for sure and still do sometimes. But we had one conversation that changed everything for me. See, most of our communication happens by e-mail. And one time after he had sent me a few e-mails in a row telling me things I needed to fix and things I needed to work on, I just couldn’t take it anymore. I went to him and said, ‘I don’t feel like I can do anything right, man. I don’t feel like you like me. I feel like a failure.’

“And that’s when he explained to me, ‘The problem is, you’re not reading my e- mails right. You’re misrepresenting my tone in your mind. Of course I believe in you. Of course I like you. If I didn’t, you wouldn’t have a job. E-mails are tricky. You can’t see my face when you’re reading an e-mail. So here’s what I want you to do. From now on I want you to read any e-mail I send you like I was smiling when I sent it. ’Cause that’s the way I feel about you.’”

I wonder how much our lives would change if we started reading God’s Word like He was smiling when He wrote it?

Of course the One who created us believes in us. Of course He likes us. Why else would we be here? Yes, there are things He is working on in us. Yes, our sin is serious and needs to be addressed head-on. No, God is not satisfied to leave us like we are, and sometimes this involves direct confrontation. There are some tough, almost unbearably stark statements in Scripture, calling us to repent, to return, and to walk in the ways of God. There are warnings and consequences, explained in no uncertain terms. The Bible isn’t a book of butterfly kisses and sweet nothings.

But even God’s correction is meant to convince us of His love. Contrary to the condemnation and accusations of the chatterbox, even when God calls us out on something we’re doing wrong, His purpose is to raise us up. Never to beat us down.

Everything changes the day you realize that not only does God love you but He actually likes you too. Not just because He has to. But because He wants to.

The God who made you is constantly smiling over you, and that ought to make you smile like a first grader opening his change purse on grilled cheese day. Furthermore, it ought to empower your perspective in every battle you face. How can you lose when a God who feels this way about you is fighting for you?

This is an excerpt from Crash the Chatterbox: Hearing God’s Voice Above All Others by Steven Furtick of Elevation Church in Charlotte, North Carolina. Learn more about the book at

Setting And Tracking Your Personal Goals

Post by Tommy Bowman

Today I took a much needed break from everything. I went and sat at places where nobody knows my name. I used the day to force myself to stop thinking about work and take a hard look at myself; the state of where and who I am and the state of where and who I want to be.

My life seems to flow best when I use the flow of the church where I lead. Therefore, January, May, & September are my reset months. And with February 1st around the corner, it’s time to set my personal goals from now through May 1st. Here’s what I do and hopefully it helps you:

1. Align

Make sure your goals align with the values that you hold to. This may seem obvious but too often we aim to accomplish things that are at the core of who other people are or who other people expect us to be. Make sure your goals are driven by your core values.

2. M.A.R.C.H. 

You’ve probably heard of the SMART method for goal setting and it’s a great method. But after I read Jim Collins’ Great By Choice, I came up with the M.A.R.C.H. criteria for goal setting.

  • Measurable – Can you measure the goal?
  • Attainable – Does the goal promote effort?
  • Requiring Faith – Does the goal promote faith?
  • Clear – Is the goal specific?
  • High & Low Bounds – Does the goal promote discipline?

3. Record 

Write down and record your goals somewhere. This is easy and important. This sets your intentions into motion.

4. Review

It’s important to review your goals on a regular basis. Knowing where you stand will inform how you need to act. There is a new app that I am using to accomplish this. It’s called Strides. When you review your goals be sure to know why you’re ahead, on target and even behind. This will also inform the next action that you need to take.

5. Shoosh!

You know the feeling, right? When we tell someone a dream, plan, or goal that we have, we tend to let the announcement let us off the hook. When we do this, we are feeding the holes in our identity versus promoting growth. If someone isn’t going to be a partner in you accomplishing your goal, don’t tell them.

So based on my last point, I’m not going to share the goals I’ve set. But I’d love to hear how you set and track goals!

Tommy  is the Directional Leader at Mission Church in the suburbs of Chicago. Tommy’s passion is to take proven leadership values and principles from the business world and implement them into the world of church and church teams. Connect and learn more about Tommy at or @tommybowman.

What Blows Up Our Lives?

This is an excerpt from a brand-new book, Home Run: Learn God’s Game Plan for Life, co-authored by Kevin Myers of 12Stone Church and Atlanta and John C. Maxwell. In the book, Myers and Maxwell share their thoughts on four key ideas crucial to win in life and leadership: Connection with God, Character, Community, and Competence.In this post, Kevin shares some thoughts on why character matters.

What Blows Up Our Lives?

I watch a lot of movies. I love them for the entertainment factor, but I also often see spiritual truths in them. A favorite lesson can be found in the 2008 movie Iron Man. It’s the story of Tony Stark, a playboy inventor who inherits his father’s fortune and his interest in the weapons manufacturing industry he founded. Though Tony is a genius at creating weapons, he is also a picture of self-indulgence and irresponsibility. To say that he’s someone who has neglected first base is an understatement. But his nonchalance toward character does catch up with him, and as is true for all of us, his actions have consequences.

In a pivotal scene of the movie, the military vehicle in which Tony is riding somewhere in Afghanistan is attacked, and the convoy is destroyed. Tony runs for his life, only to come face-to-face with a bomb that has been launched by the enemy. To his shock, the bomb has the name and logo of his own company on it. When it explodes, Tony is near-fatally wounded.

What does this have to do with character and first base? The message is painfully clear: We are like Tony Stark. What blows up in our lives usually has our name on it! The problems we experience—we often create. And like Tony, we are often surprised when they blow up in our faces and ruin our lives.

Has that been true for you? Are you surprised by the blowups in your life? Or do you have the eyes to see your own role in creating many of them? Do you have the courage to confess how you contribute to the consequences you experience? If so, you probably understand the connection between consequences and character flaws. Once you understand how you blow up your own dreams, you have good reasons to win first-base character.

Now, I’m not a millionaire playboy, and chances are you’re not, either. So if you don’t relate to Tony Stark, here’s an image that may resonate with you. Character problems are like sinkholes. Sinkholes are fissures or chasms hidden under the surface of the ground that collapse, creating an open hole in the ground. I’ve read that Florida is full of them. Water erodes the limestone underground and leaves empty pockets. When the ground above them gives way, a hole is created. Some are tiny. But others are big enough to swallow a car, a house, or, according to one article in the Wall Street Journal, an entire car dealership! What’s amazing is that the moment before the sinkhole opens up, nobody has a clue there is a problem. One minute you’re in your house and everything is normal. The next minute, the ground collapses and your house is destroyed.

People who don’t take care of character issues are like houses built over sinkholes. They may look great. They may appear solid—not only to the casual observer but also to the residents in the house. But as soon as pressure comes, because the foundation is weak, cracks appear, and total disaster may be only seconds away.

Good character creates an invisible foundation in a person’s life, upon which relationships, career, and purpose can be built. With a strong character foundation, you can withstand life’s storms and pressures. Without it, you implode and your entire life can get swallowed up like a house in a sinkhole.

Hear more of what Kevin and John have to say about Character and other vital qualities for leaders by check out the book. Visit to learn more.

Follow the Thread

Post from Pete Scazzero

Take a few minutes to meditate on this lovely poem by William Stafford (1914–1993). It lays out the indispensable foundation for both the Christian life and great leadership.

The Way It Is

There’s a thread you follow. It goes among
things that change. But it doesn’t change.
People wonder about what you are pursuing.
You have to explain about the thread.
But it is hard for others to see.
While you hold it you can’t get lost.
Tragedies happen; people get hurt
or die; and you suffer and get old.
Nothing you do can stop time’s unfolding.
You don’t ever let go of the thread.

Pete is the Founder and Teaching Pastor/Pastor at Large at New Life Fellowship Church, a large, multiracial, international church with seventy-three countries represented. Pete is the author of two best-selling books: Emotionally Healthy Spirituality (Nelson, 2006) and The Emotionally Healthy Church (Zondervan, 2010).