Be the Leader Your Are
“Don’t let anyone rob you of your imagination, your creativity, or your curiosity.
It’s your place in the world; it’s your life. Go on and do all you can with it,
and make it the life you want to live.”
—Mae C. Jemison
first African-American woman astronaut
Leadership is not a new word for United Methodist Women in the 21st century. One way members show leadership is working to end domestic violence. This month is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Let’s make an extra effort this month to support domestic violence shelters and homes, especially our national mission institutions who do this work.
Domestic violence is not just a women’s issue. It is an issue of faith. Consider partnering with your church’s or district’s United Methodist Men to raise awareness and provide training in United Methodist congregations. Visit www.unitedmethodistwomen.org/domestic-violence for resources. Your unit could contribute an article to your church or conference newsletter or website and share it with the national office. Make a special donation to a national mission institution working on domestic violence related issues.
Collaboration, networking and partnership are ways United Methodist Women utilizes a flexible leadership structure. Leadership Development Days begin in November and offer great and powerful insight into leadership styles and skills sets. No longer a space for simply officer training, we can prepare women for specific positions while also focusing on leadership of individuals.
When I think of United Methodist Women I think about servant leadership. “A servant leader … describes a person without formal recognition as a leader. These people often lead by example. They have high integrity and lead with generosity. Their approach can create a positive corporate culture, and it can lead to high morale among team members” (from MindTools.com). Our organization is made up of members who give their time, talent, energy and dedicated lives on a daily basis. We work side by side with our sisters, lifting them up, inspiring and encouraging them to be leaders at the local, district, conference, jurisdiction, national and even world level.
I decided a long time ago that I wanted to be an effective leader. I started saying yes to new roles and giving myself opportunities for new possibilities. Let me share five values that I think make an effective leader:
1. Great listener.
3. Positive attitude.
4. Honest and truthful.
5. Inspiring, encouraging and motivating.
As we prepare for the future of this dynamic, transformational organization, we must tap into our own leadership power. You are equipped to change the world—so don’t hold back. Go for it! We are the leaders turning faith, hope and love into action!
Be the leader God wants you to be.
YVETTE KIM RICHARDS
United Methodist Women