Last week I mentioned Chip Ingram’s book, “Good to Great in God’s Eyes”, and wrote about the practice of “Enjoying Great Moments”. Another key practice that he mentions in the book is to “Pursue Great People”.

While Chip’s focus is on Christianity, I again think this principle applies extremely well to servant leadership. I feel every leader needs to establish their own Leadership Mount Rushmore, which are key people in their life to help them become the leader they want to be.

All great high performing leaders have a never-ending desire to continue to improve. One great way to improve is to surround yourself with people that will help you get to the level of leadership that you desire. This group of people would be your Leadership Mount Rushmore.

My Leadership Mount Rushmore would include my father for his work ethic and focus, Ron Musil (Banta Corp.) for his understanding and guidance of what was truly important – building relationships, Chris Edmonds (Ken Blanchard Companies) for his extreme knowledge and guidance on how to build a purpose driven, values based culture, and Chad Hall & Bill Copper (Coach Approach Ministries) for their knowledge and guidance on coaching.

I would not be where I am today from a leadership standpoint if it were not for these people. Key components to look for when building your leadership influencers would include:

  • Someone who believes in you
  • Someone who will speak the truth to you
  • Someone who will give you a picture of the kind of person you want to be
  • Someone who will help you set goals and push you towards them
  • Someone who will hold you accountable for your commitments

To be effective in pursuing great people in your life, I would encourage you to:

  • Pray earnestly for God to put the appropriate people around you
  • Be intentional and take initiative to pursue them – they won’t normally come to you
  • Start in your current relational network
  • Be open to asking for advice and help
  • Give it time and persevere to achieve your influencers
  • Realize that some may need to be virtual
  • Make time in your schedule to make it happen

And lastly once you have your Leadership Mount Rushmore, don’t take them for granted. Be sure they know how much they are appreciated and the difference they have made and are making in your life.

Mark Deterding