1.    The best leaders love God with all of their hearts and put Him first.
It all starts here. If Jesus isn’t first, then everything else on the list below is skewed. The best leader is in God’s Word daily and has a prayer life to stay connected with the One who will lead him/her to become a blessing to all he/she comes in contact with.
2.    The best leaders love and lead their families well.
The best leader knows that the most important people in life are their family members. Family members spell love: t-i-m-e. This means not only quality time, but quantity time. The quality shows up more often with greater quantities of time. The best leaders are careful to be there for each immediate family member and to have something in the tank to give when they show up.
3.    The best leaders love people.
They don’t use them for their purposes, they want to bless, encourage and help them. Beware of the leader who loves crowds and dislikes people. The right kind of leader enjoys being with others, laughing and enjoying life together.
4.    The best leaders are humble.
I like what one of my friends says, “When you walk into a room, are you a ‘Here I am’ or a ‘There you are’ person?” “Here I am” people want everything to revolve around them. “There you are” people enjoy lifting others up.
5.    The best leaders have been given wonderful gifts by the Lord.
This one follows humility for good reason. God gives the gifts of leadership, communication, administration and much, much more. The best leaders realize where their gifts come from and utilize these gifts primarily for God’s purposes. When God’s gifts flow through great leaders, amazing results happen.
6.    The best leaders are disciplined and hardworking.
They are willing to do all the positive things it takes to have maximum success. They put in the hours, they are educated, they are readers, they are learners, not only in college, but beyond. They are committed to being lifelong learners.
7.    The best leaders live pure and holy lives.
We have all seen leaders go down publicly because of a lack of character. It is sad and devastating to the people they lead. The best leaders value purity and character in their own lives. They know that God is the only one who can really help them overcome temptation. They truly believe that life is better for them and for all those they love and serve if they pursue becoming more like Jesus every day.
8.  The best leaders are spiritually and emotionally mature.
The more the leader has the fruit of the spirit in their life, the better their impact is going to be. The best leaders don’t make excuses for their emotional immaturity. They know that anger, putting people down and forcefulness do not bring the kind of good results that last. Patience, kindness, self-control and love are valued as essential characteristics for the best leadership impact. The best leaders are committed to overcoming their past and growing in these fruits for the good of all and for the good of their workplace.
9.    The best leaders are not consumed with desire for attention or notoriety.
This one can be subtle and hard to detect in our own lives. We need to ask ourselves, “Do I need to be recognized to be okay?” The best leaders focus on their private lives being solid and their public lives being lived out for the good of others. When they see in themselves the desire for personal attention and notoriety, they confess this to their spouses and close friends and ask them to pray with them that their hearts will be in the right place. They know that if they can get this down, God will be glorified in a greater way through them and they will still be able to fulfill God’s purpose for their lives and reach their full potential.
10. The best leaders enjoy life beyond their work.
They understand that they need time away periodically (their day off, rest, vacation with their family and sabbaticals). Like a computer that has too much input, they know that God has wired them in such a way that they have to hit the reset button regularly. They believe that if God rested, they surely need to as well. So they develop a good rhythm for their lives that includes the balance of work, worship, rest and play. These things lead to a greater enjoyment and better results in their family life, work and all of life in general.