Successful leadership requires a number of traits that work together to set an example for others and push teams and organizations to new heights. Traits like integrity, gratitude, and self-awareness are all key to successful and impactful leadership. Another is tact. Tactful leadership is an art form that doesn’t come naturally to everyone. But once it’s mastered, it can serve as a catalyst for individual leaders and the teams they serve.
“A fool vents all his feelings, But a wise man holds them back.”
A quick review of modern social interaction would lead one to believe that tact is a lost art. But upon closer examination, those that master tactfulness excel more often than not. The anonymity of social media and digital communication inherently lends itself to overreaction, a lack in judgment, and meaningless arguments.
Proverbs 29:11 provides a clear description of how leaders should communicate, both in one-on-one interactions and in addressing groups. Only foolish people lose their cool and use their feelings to communicate. Wise leaders are able to assess the situation and determine the best course of action or response for all involved based on the situation.
A careful and thoughtful expression of ideas is key. Reckless projections of emotions lead to heated arguments and irrational discussions. These situations continue to escalate until words turn into actions and anger eventually transforms into regret.
Disagreements will happen. That’s human nature. But it’s how we act and react in those situations that speak volumes about us people and leaders. Christian leaders are called to hold their feelings in check, to set feelings aside, and to discuss situations rationally and tactfully.
When Jesus encountered conflict, he never tried to control or manipulate the situation. And he always kept his feelings under control. He asked questions. He invited conversation and understanding of the situation. It’s much easier to focus on what others are doing wrong or on placing blame than to seek understanding and persuasion through tactful dialog.
Furthermore, Biblical leaders are called to remain in contact with those they disagree with. Don’t discount them or disengage with people just because you disagree. On the contrary, continue to seek them out. Continue to attempt to understand them. Tactful leadership, Jesus-like leadership, calls us to remain connected to those we disagree with and even those who oppose us.
Are you setting an example of tactful leadership for your followers?
Finding, vetting, and securing the right leaders for your organization can be a daunting task and it’s vital to secure the right leaders at all levels of the organization. You must know that the people leading your organization are tactful and the right fit for your organization’s future.
FaithSearch consultants bring more than 130 years of cumulative experience in faith-based executive search. If you’re looking for differential leaders throughout your organization that can have a positive impact on your people and community, FaithSearch excels in securing leaders for nonprofit, higher education, and healthcare organizations.