Leadership Skill: Assessment

The Leadership Skill of Assessment Defined:

The leader reviews a situation evaluatively to gain a better understanding of it in order to discern the next course of action ... whether that be improvement, elimination, or development of a program, activity, or process.
Obviously leaders with analytical minds will find assessing easier and more enjoyable. These leaders must learn to be patient with those not so inclined and guard against getting so bogged down in this process that they are too slow to act. Assessments are merely tools to get where you need to be so watch for obsessing in them.
Driven leaders might be more prone to act first and think later ... about how to fix what went wrong. These kinds of leaders must keep in mind that God is just as concerned with the process as He is with the end result and that we are to give our best in all we do. Assessments can provide an objective means to prevent problems, not merely fix them, so learn to value them.
As with any leadership skill, church and ministry leaders must be concerned with how mastery of this skill affects the cause of Christ, not merely how it makes them a good leader. Asking the following question will help keep us on track:

How do assessments fit into God's Character & Ways?

We have an all-knowing, all-wise, sovereign God. Why would He have need to assess? Yet, He does. If He does, then why would we think we can or should skip this part of the leadership process?
Being omniscient, He knows the beginning from the end. He understands the big picture as well as the particulars. Out of that, comes Scripture about the foreknowledge of God. Because He knows in advance what will happen God plans accordingly and works situations around for the good.
Lesson for leaders about assessment: You are not God so you must "in all your ways acknowledge Him" (Prov. 3:5-6). Assessment apart from God is an act of futility for "there is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death (destruction)" (Prov. 16:25).
Think about creation:
1) The Spirit hovered over the waters before God began the creation process. (Gen. 1:2)
2) Along the way God stepped back to see if it was good before proceeding. (Gen. 1:4, 10, 12, 18, 21, 25)
"And God saw that it was good. Then God said . . ." (Gen. 1:10)
3) Finally when everything was completed, He looked at the big picture. (Gen. 1:31)
"God saw all that he had made, and it was very good." (Gen. 1:31)
Lesson for leaders about assessment: Assessment isn't a once and done process. Following God's example, you begin with assessment and end with assessment and assess at steps in-between.
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