Saturday, June 7, 2008

Leading Out

One of the joys of our calling in the Young Single Adult Ward is found in attending excellent activities like the Leadership Conference at the Institute this morning. This conference was planned to teach the young people leadership skills and it was absolutely amazing! I don't think there was anything going on this morning that could have been more beneficial for them. After a continental breakfast, our keynote speaker was Pres. John Hunt, our Stake President.

He shared 10 Leadership Principles
he has learned while serving in the church:

Lanette Hopkins and President Hunt~
Waiting for the conference to begin

1. Leadership is developed through experience.
2. Know what resources you have and how to use them.
3. Be Optimistic.
4. Delegate
5. Focus on a few things. "Do not be a mile wide and an inch deep" Use others to accomplish the rest of it. Just because it is your stewardship does not mean you have to do it all alone.
6. Recognize that you may have some loneliness in your position. Not in the social sense but since you are the one to receive specific revelation for your calling it may take others awhile to get on board with your methods and/or ideas of how something should be accomplished..
7. Know the differences and similarities between administration and ministering. When we speak of being anxiously engaged in a good cause..he said the good cause is the people not the programs.
8. Don't worry about "filling the shoes" of your predecessor in your callings in the church.
9. Don't whine about what you don't have, use what you do have and make it work.
10. Develop your teaching skills, the essence of good leadership is great teaching.

Our Great Leaders and Teachers~Kianna, Tony & Lanette

Lanette gave us some great ideas about how to communicate as a leader. People need to have a leader that:

1. Gives Specific Instructions
2. Asks them to return and report. Accountability
3. Gets a commitment from them
4. Receives their report, listening to what they have to say.
5. Praises their successes and is encouraging.

Kianna Collier spoke about delegation. My favorite part of her talk was a quote from Randy Pausch's book, The Last Lecture. It's a gem.

"For ambitious young boys with a scientific bent, there could be no greater role model than James T. Kirk of Star Trek. In fact, I seriously believe that I became a better teacher and colleague - maybe even a better husband - by watching Kirk run the Enterprise.

Think about it. If you've seen the TV show, you know that Kirk was not the smartest guy on the ship. Mr. Spock, his first officer, was the always-logical intellect on board. Dr. McCoy had all the medical knowledge available to mankind in the 2260s. Scotty was the chief engineer, who had the technical know-how to keep that ship running, even when it was under attack by aliens.

So what was Kirk's skill set? Why did he get to climb on board the Enterprise and run it?

The answer: There is this skill set called "leadership

I learned so much by watching this guy in action. He was the distilled essence of the dynamic manager, a guy who knew how to delegate, had the passion to inspire, and looked good in what he wore to work. He never
professed to have skills greater than his subordinates. He acknowledged that they knew what they were doing in their domains. But he established the vision, the tone. He was in charge of morale."

Kianna pointed out that by surrounding yourself with good people a leader can accomplish many things.

We had so many wonderful young people attending the conference and I took lots of photos but I thought this one was the best partially because of the subject!

This is my beautiful friend, Gabrielle. She and I just have a special connection and I truly love this young woman! Gabe is a born leader in every sense of the word. Our ward members range in age from 18 to 30 and I know we shouldn't call them "kids" but to us they are kind of like "our kids" so we do.

After Kianna's talk we then broke the kids into groups and had them build the tallest structure they could in 20 minutes with newspaper and tape. They were to use the skills they had learned in working together as a group. It was really fun and they came up with some great ideas.

Planning and Implementing the Plan.

Collaboration and Success

A bunch of engineers, it seems!

Every group made it as tall as the ceiling and
the winners went beyond the mark!

The conference was wrapped up Tony Damiano and he taught that in the church, and most of the time in life we do not volunteer for leadership positions. They seem to find us instead. By being prepared we can be ready when an opportunity to lead arises for us. He cited Rosa Parks and how she became a great leader in the Desegregation Movement because she knew what she believed to be right and she was ready to stand up for her principles when the chance for her to do it was presented. He asked us all if we are ready to do the same when our turn comes?

Bishop Kruse closed the conference by telling us that leadership in the church requires the guidance of the spirit which depends upon our worthiness to receive it. Everyone did an excellent job of presenting what they had prepared. It was a very rich experience.

I have written this out in great detail because it was one of the best conferences I have been to (and I have been to many work related ones that were very expensive and not nearly as good.) I wanted to keep the notes from these excellent talks. The information the young adults received was for life~not just for serving in the church. These are the experiences the young people in the church receive all the time that help them rise to the top in all areas of their lives.

After the conference we had a great BBQ thanks to Bishop Kruse and Shelba and Brother Paul Maughn on the barbie! I commend all who participated in and organizing this great event.

The ties that bind us together in this great work.
Days like this one make us very happy for our membership in the church.
It is easy to take the blessing for granted and it is wonderful
to be reminded of how thankful we should all be for all we have been so graciously given!


Jim said...

It was indeed a great conference. It is amazing what we can accomplish when we all work together. It is interesting to note that it all started when our Bishop said, "I think we need to organize a Leadership Conference for the YSA." What a blessing it is to have the ability to realize good ideas.

Miss Jen said...

Sounds like fun! I went to church today in spite of our little... interaction with the Bishop this week. It was good to see a few people and Shannon is awesome and keeping a good eye on me. I can tell the 'word' went out this week because I was bombarded with offers for help. Any whooo, sounds like you guys had fun.