What is obvious to you as a leader is not always obvious to others. Sometimes our familiarity with the obvious shocks us into silence. Being a wise steward with the wisdom and opportunity from the Lord often means overcoming this silence.
The temptation for many of us is that to us the obvious is so obvious that we tell ourselves, “I can’t say anything about this matter. Everyone will think I am a poor leader. That is elementary. It is on everyone’s mind. To open my mouth now and make such a simple statement of resolution would be a waste of time and leadership credit. It must be more complex.”
But it is not always on everyone’s mind. The solution is not always complex.
You know the wrench will fix the leaky faucet, but others do not. . . even those who often work with wrenches.
Part of excellence in leadership involves reminding people of the obvious. The effective leader is someone out in front. He or she is ahead of others, farther down the path–at least a few steps.
The leader walks where few others are walking. He thinks thoughts the majority are not thinking. She sees things others often fail to see.
The leader lives in the world of the obvious so others can come to dwell there.
But we sometimes reside in that world for so long that we come to believe everyone lives there.
Solomon was once confronted with a conundrum that no one else was able to solve. He quickly resolved the matter with (to him) an obvious solution (1 Kings 3:16-28), for the “wisdom of God was in him to do justice” (v. 28, ESV).
As the faucet continued to drip, Solomon saw the wrench nearby.
Maybe the matter is obvious to us for we are the Lord’s leaders for the hour. Maybe the divine wisdom we have received wants us to speak and overcome the shock of silence.
Will people listen to your obvious? Yes. Maybe. Not always–for the foolishness of ten spies triumphed over the obvious of the two.
So, whenever a challenge comes along in your next meeting, take a leadership risk and state the obvious. Maybe someone will agree and see the wrench and fix that faucet that has been dripping for a few years.
(image source: Microsoft Office)