Books on “Learning Agility” such as, Becoming an Agile Leader, by Victoria Swisher (Korn Ferry Publishing, 2016) have been very popular in the last several years. I particularly like this line on the front cover “Know what to do … when you don’t know what to do.” In her book she points out the differences between “traditional learning” and “agile learning.” The agile learner employs some practical ways of being that go beyond Intelligence IQ and our traditional standard testing measurements.
Agile learners are:
- Quick thinkers
- Initiative takers
- Curious – always asking “why” and “how”
- Leaders who make fresh connections
- Leaders who acquire and use rules and principles
- Broad thinkers
- Leaders who know their personal strengths and weaknesses
Swisher focuses on five areas that determine a leaders ability to lead well during changing times. She believes these are the keys to being successful leaders.
- Self Awareness – Leaders know their strengths and weaknesses
- Mental Agility – Leaders are critical thinkers who are comfortable with complexity and able to think about fresh ideas and new ways of addressing as issue.
- People Agility – Leaders are skilled communicators and conflict managers. They value their team and work cooperatively. They listen to understand.
- Change Agility – Leaders follow a process to create change. They are willing to experiment and fail, take the heat of resistance and the discomfort of change. They have a passion for introducing new perspectives and ideas.
- Results Agility – Leaders deliver results in first-time situations through resourcefulness and having a significant presence that inspires others. They build high performing teams and are flexible and adaptive.
Take a moment to assess your “Agility.” What areas could use some growth? Are you stuck or resistant to any of these focus areas? What would it take to interact more constructively with your team? How can you open your mind to new possibilities? Are you resistant to change? Can you see a bright new way to share the gospel?
The Center for Leadership Development is poised to support Lay and Clergy Leadership through coaching, cohort groups, online learning and resources libraries. Please email or if you would like to explore developing your leadership.
Director, Center for Leadership Development
The mission of the Center for Leadership Development (CLD) is to develop principled Christian leaders for the transformation of the world. Our priority is to design an ‘ecosystem’ for cultivating young leaders (35 and under) and culturally-diverse leaders who can reach the mission field. Additionally, we strive to cultivate leaders to support the objective to catalyze gatherings of new faces in new spaces in and through every local church and in targeted mission fields.
We continue to re-imagine all our ministries through the lens of reaching young leaders and diverse leaders through a system of Wesleyan Formation, Leadership Development, Vocational Discernment and Professional Development events, programs and initiatives. In collaboration with the Conference Board of Ordained Ministry, the CLD seeks to recruit gifted, diverse clergy; develop and sustain clergy and laity through life-long learning; and equip Staff/Pastor Parish Relations Committees to collaborate with their clergy for ongoing formative work towards greater effectiveness. In addition, we connect and resource Boards and Resources for churches and laity.