We have an unprecedented opportunity to begin leadership development with our own children. It is simply identifying the basic qualities of leadership that already exist in your children and fanning that gift into a flame.
Involve Your Kids; Take the Time.
We can involve our kids in our normal and basic duties at home. However, if we are looking to accomplish a task and make it quick, simple and streamlined, exclude your kids from helping. Kids take longer. Kids ask questions. Kids spill far more easily than I do. Kids will drop the nail far more frequently than I will. But it is worth it. This is Leadership Development via Parenting.
A Leader in Disguise
Sometimes the kid who seems to be the most problematic, is simply a future leader with raw and untapped leadership ability, waiting for someone to lead them. That is our job. The very item about your child that annoys you the most about them may be the very thing that could set them apart as a leader in their future. They may have the untapped gift of a future leader. It might be a leadership trait in disguise.
Development Not Disgust
My encouragement to you is to look at your children eager shortcomings with an eye toward develop and not disgust. I tell you the very trait that is continually tripping you up as a parent, may have an uncharacteristically positive side. Seek to develop a future leader.
Over the years, I’ve often pulled aside one of our older kids and I share with them:
"Can you help me? Listen, clearly, you are a leader. The question is which way will you lead? Will you lead for good or will you lead for bad? Would you be willing to help me tonight at dinner? You see, I need you to be a part of my team."
Develop Not Discipline
Taking the initiative to develop and not just discipline can be very, very formative in the life of a young leader. Look this week at your kids. Look at them with an eye toward leadership development. Truly, It could make all the difference in the world.