Editor’s Note: The following is a guest blog post by one of MarketingMel’s six advisors, Dave McAuley. Dave, who’s been both an entrepreneur and pastor, is the founder of the Summit Leadership Foundation, a 501 (c) 3 with a heart for connecting, caring and consulting.
“Only God Himself fully appreciates the influence of a Christian mother in the molding of character in her children.” ~ Rev. Billy Graham
Building a legacy begins with keeping the next generation in mind. Many leaders are shortsighted in setting goals. Their expectations for having a lasting impact are very limited. However, visionary leaders can see their influence extending well into the future.
Leaders who train themselves to think “next generation”, gain influence well beyond their lifetime. They build a legacy with lasting impact. I saw this lived out in my Grandfather who was a true servant leader in his investment in the lives of others. His legacy lives on today through the children, grandchildren and even great-grandchildren of those he influenced during his lifetime.
We can learn a lot from the history of the Jewish people who had the mindset of generational leadership instilled in them through the repeating of the Shema which is central to their faith:
“Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one! You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”
Some generations fulfilled the commitment to effectively pass this on to the next generation and some did not, but there was always a “remnant” in each generation who would pass this on to their children. They knew this truth was timeless and they were building a legacy by pouring themselves into the next generation.
Do you lead with the next generation in mind? What would acting on that perspective look like in your organization and with your team? As a leader, you can extend your influence by pouring yourself into this generation in such a way that prepares them to influence the next generation through what they learned from you. Generational influence is essential in building a lasting legacy. What beliefs, values and principles would you like to see passed on as part of your legacy in the next generation?
Are you being intentional about building a lasting legacy through those you lead today? Simply invest in the lives of others. You don’t have to fill them, just take time to pour a little into them each day and building your legacy will begin to take shape.
Dave McAuley is the Founder, President and CEO of Summit Leadership Foundation as well as a Founding Member and an Independent Certified Coach, Speaker and Trainer of the John Maxwell Team. Summit Leadership Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit Christian ministry located in Johnson City, TN. Summit serves as a relational hub for “Connecting, Consulting, Coaching and Caring” for leaders. www.summitlife.org