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Books for those in ministry organizations who desire to take their leadership, teams, governance, and ministry effectiveness to the next level.

08 Oct '12

The value of being circumspect

Posted by T.J. Addington in leadership development
Circumspect: thinking carefully about possible risks before doing or saying something. (Webster)

Wise leaders understand the value of circumspection. They are not risk adverse or afraid of trying new things. In fact, their willingness to do so is what allows them to think outside the box and embrace new ideas. However, they do so only after considering the possible risks, unintended consequences and carefully weighing the costs.

Circumspect leaders are thinkers. Deep thinkers. They are not adherents to the idea of the month, don't readily jump on the popular trends and don't accept common wisdom as necessarily wisdom. They solicit the views of many on critical issues before making a decision. This is not about being cautious but about being wise - and understanding the ramifications of a proposed course of action.

Wise leaders understand the value of "thinking grey." While others are ready to quickly decide an issue, circumspect leaders often wait for a period of time, evaluating all sides of the issue, being neither proponents or opponents but simply keeping an open mind so that when a decision is made it is a wise decision. It allows them to evaluate with objectivity rather than taking a position. When they do decide it is with the value of having considered all possible angles and outcomes.

Many people believe that the best leaders make quick and decisive decisions. Actually the best leaders make circumspect decisions.