LF Blog and News

Eucharistic Leadership: Taken- Episode 30

Take a moment to listen to the latest episode of the City as Playground Podcast.

 

How can fostering humility in leadership help us be more effective and life-giving leaders to those we serve? Rick and Dave talk with Larry Lloyd—President of Memphis Leadership Foundation and LF Vice President of Network Impact—about how being taken as a leader can inform our ideas and styles of leadership. Join them as they explore this first movement of Eucharistic leadership.

 

Listen here and send in any questions you would like answered to info@leadershipfoundations.org.

 


The Welcoming Table

Who is welcome at your table? Leadership Foundations takes this question seriously and recognizes that the answer is not always easy to live out. To welcome someone to your table signifies that they are wanted, heard, and included. Jesus is the perfect model of this welcoming.

 

Jesus created tables that were different from the tables that were common in his time. All were welcome with Jesus—in a time of strict class, race, gender, and vocational divides—and he paid a high price for this type of inclusion. To be at the same table—literally and metaphorically—is to be in close proximity and intimacy with the other, and it isn’t always easy. Whether we are sharing food, ideas, visions for the city, or organizational responsibilities at this table, we are engaging in the challenging and beautiful task that Jesus passed to us in welcoming all at the table.

 

At LF, we strive to follow Jesus’ example in creating diverse and welcoming tables. LF’s wheel of change—engaging leaders of good faith and good will, building the capacity of others, and developing joint initiatives—is aimed at creating tables like this. LF and Local Leadership Foundations work to bring people of all backgrounds together because we believe that collaboration—rather than isolation and competition—is how cities transform from battlegrounds to playgrounds.

 

Following Jesus’ lead, Leadership Foundations seeks to be a place where all are welcome at the table. Jesus has charged his followers not to protect the table, but to fling open the doors and windows and welcome all. We all have the opportunity to participate in this charge. Check out LF’s City as Playground episode 24 and episode 25 to dig deeper into LF’s vision of the Table.


Eucharistic Leadership Whispercast: Taken- Episode 29

Take a moment to listen to the latest episode of the City as Playground Podcast.

 

Is leadership simply possessed by the luck of the draw, or is it a gift that each of us have the ability of cultivating? In this Whispercast, Rick and Dave—using the Taken movement of Eucharistic leadership—explore how viewing leadership as a gift rather than a possession changes how one leads. This sets up our next full length podcast where Rick, Dave, and their guest (Larry Lloyd, President of Memphis Leadership Foundation and LF Vice President of Network Impact) will dive more into the idea of being Taken as a leader.

 

Listen here and send in any questions you would like answered to info@leadershipfoundations.org.

 


Building Relationships Through Joint Initiatives

What role do relationships play in transforming cities into God’s playgrounds? Relationships are at the core of what LF does, and ultimately we believe that they are the very thing that transforms people and places. We recognize the individuals and organizations that make up each city’s rich and promising landscape. However, this collective community often shifts into one of rivalry or isolation as organizations silo into their own mission and work. LF works to reverse this trend by building relationships and creating joint initiatives that cultivate a community of collaboration rather than one of rivalry. As part of LF’s wheel of change, joint initiatives help LF leverage the resources of the collective community to improve lives and cities.

 

One example of these joint initiatives is LF’s collaboration with Young Life (YL). LF will be entering into a partnership—the Student Leadership Project—with Young Life this summer in three LF member cities: Grand Rapids, Minneapolis, and Philadelphia. The YL Student Leadership Project is designed to provide students with a discipleship experience in an urban context. The combination of LF’s experience in cities and YL’s history of reaching out to young people makes this a promising collaboration. Through LF and YL’s relationship and leveraging of resources, students will have the opportunity to grow in their faith, friendships, vocations, and more. Students will be equipped to bring lasting change to their communities with a renewed vision of their city as God’s playground.

 

As exemplified by this joint initiative, LF believes that when we partner with organizations of good faith and good will, the product is greater than the sum of our organizational parts. Joint initiatives allow LF to share with and learn from other organizations as we work together for the social and spiritual renewal of cities.


Eucharistic Leadership- Episode 28

Take a moment to listen to the latest episode of the City as Playground Podcast.

 

Is leadership bred or born? In this episode, Rick Enloe and Dave Hillis explore how the Eucharist can shape our view of leadership. They contrast the 4 P’s of conventional leadership to a Eucharistic leadership of being taken, blessed, broken, and given. Join them as they dive into the process of moving from a leadership of egotism to one of service.

 


Senior Associates

Is leadership born or bred? The theme of this month’s City as Playground podcast was Eucharistic Leadership. As Dave and Rick discussed, one tenet of Eucharistic leadership is that the ability to lead is just as much, if not more, a product of nurture as it is of nature. At Leadership Foundations, one of the ways this nurturing occurs is through our Senior Associations. In April, all 20 Senior Associates gathered for a three-day Stages of Impact and accreditation training in Dallas. This was a rich time of education, resourcing, and growth as a community in mission.

 

Senior Associates are committed veteran leaders who have demonstrated excellence in their respective fields of leadership. They come from backgrounds in ministry, non-profits, consultation, and a variety of other environments both inside and out of LF. This experience equips Senior Associates to resource and support LLF presidents.

 

Being a Senior Associate is no simple task. They play an integral role in LF’s mission as they meet monthly with LLF presidents to deepen the impact of the LF network. Senior Associates serve as a personal coach to LLF presidents delivering LF’s menu of baseline and ancillary services. They are also conduits between members and LF as information and opportunities arise in the LF network. Senior Associates mentor LLF presidents working to operationalize the wheel of change in their city. In addition, they are consultants to LLF presidents as inevitable problems arise. Lastly, Senior Associates are guides that listen to and spiritually support LLF presidents on their personal and professional journeys leading an LLF.

 

Senior Associates are one of the essential elements that allow LF to equip LLFs to do the difficult and joyful work of turning cities into playgrounds.


2016 Annual Report

We are excited to share the Leadership Foundations’ 2016 Annual Report with you. Last year was filled with a remarkable number of developments that have further positioned Leadership Foundations (LF) and our members as a force of good will on behalf of cities throughout the world. In this report, you will learn about the intentional process LF has taken to cultivate and drive global impact.

 

Click here to download the 2016 LF Annual Report

 


Eucharistic Leadership Whispercast- Episode 27

Take a moment to listen to the latest episode of the City as Playground Podcast.

 

What would it look like if your leadership was shaped by the Eucharist? In this Whispercast, Rick and Dave discuss LF’s perspective and its implications. This sets up our next full length podcast where they will dive into the shape of Eucharistic Leadership in more depth. Listen here and send in any questions you would like answered to info@leadershipfoundations.org.

 


Achieving Greater Impact

How can Leadership Foundations achieve greater impact in cities around the world? In March 2015, we set out to answer this question by launching the Advancement Plus Project (APP). Two years later, we are excited to report that we have made key shifts that have gone a long way to answering this question.

 

We often describe the experience of APP and working with the Bridgespan Group as engaging a “benevolent agnostic.” The Bridgespan Group’s benevolence was characterized by a caring and empathetic spirit as they listened deeply, asked penetrating questions, and provided positive options. Their agnosticism was demonstrated in the way they demanded corroborating data to support any strategic decisions thereby dotting every “i” and crossing every “t”. This rigorous analysis was applied to LF’s wheel of change, determining if it made cities better, and how LF added value to our members.

 

Bridgespan’s gift of benevolent agnosticism was a gift to LF and provided the necessary framework to measure organizational shifts moving forward. LF used this clarity to prioritize our time and resources on: a more deliberate focus on member performance improvement; more time and resources for LF function-related services rather than domain-related services; the prioritization of tailored rather than broadcast supports; and an emphasis on growing impact within the existing network rather than by adding new members.

 

With this focus, LF has made a number of key advances that are bearing great fruit as we continue to drive positive, permanent change in cities around the world.


The Goose That Laid The Golden Egg

Many years ago G.K. Chesterton wrote a wonderful book called Orthodoxy. Among other things he wrote a chapter called the Ethics of Elfland where he made an argument for why fairytales had a kind of resiliency and permanence. His answer was quite straightforward: they last because they are true. Recently LF had a Goose That Laid the Golden Egg type of experience that reaffirmed Chesterton’s insight. First, some context.

 

Over the years, Street Lights has explored one of LF’s niches: we understand cities to be living, breathing organisms. LF approaches each city through a common framework—LF’s Wheel of Change—while allowing each city’s context to determine their areas of focus. This approach, process over product, allows the city final arbitration in deciding what needs to change for the better. This niche, and keeping it sacred, makes all the difference.

 

And here is where the Goose That Laid the Golden Egg comes in, and it has less to do with the moral of the story and more to do with the content. Recently a new city was interested in becoming a member of the LF network. One of the steps we encourage is to visit an existing LF member city. The new city took this advice and went to hear from an older LF member about all that God had done over the years, reviewed the size of the budget, the amount and impact of programs and the buildings owned. What became obvious is the new city was becoming increasingly awestruck and began to fall prey to seeing its task as one of simple replication.

 

During the tour a Leadership Foundations staff member stood up and said the following; “you have just had the privilege of hearing about all of the golden eggs that have been laid in this city for many years. These should be celebrated. However I am here to help you discover the goose—LF’s wheel of permanent change—so your city can have its own golden eggs.”
This, in short, is the key to LF’s effectiveness in cities throughout the world: we plan and pray about the “goose”, allowing for cities to have their own “golden eggs.”