“And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?”
One of the greatest assets of Jesus’ leadership was His accessibility. In the verse above, Jesus prophesied about the destruction of the temple. Forty years later this prophecy was fulfilled. The prophecy of the destruction of the temple peaked the interest of the disciples that when they were on the mount of Olives, they asked Him when these things would take place. Though this verse is talking about the future destruction of the temple, the leadership of Jesus shines through in that He was so accessible to the disciples that they could get to Him without delay. Every leader should learn from Jesus of the importance of accessibility. Jesus could have easily made Himself inaccessible to His disciples, but He knew the importance of being accessible to those He led. There are five things you must learn if you are going to be an accessible leader.
First, leadership is not about you. Jesus easily could have used who He was as the Son of God as an excuse to be inaccessible to His disciples, but early in His ministry He made it clear that His purpose was not self-serving. Leadership cannot make their desires a reason not to be inaccessible to those they lead. A leader is not a leader if they are inaccessible to those they lead. Poor leadership is only accessible to their followers when they have a need; godly leadership is always accessible to meet the follower’s needs and answer their questions.
Second, every follower wants to touch their leader. You may not feel that you are that important, but your follower desires to be around you and to be able to touch you. Jesus was always there for His disciples, and they were always capable of touching Him when they needed Him. I know it isn’t always easy to be touchable to your followers, but they must never feel that they can never access you.
Third, inaccessible leadership creates frustrated followers. Your followers will become frustrated if they can never get to you to get their questions answered. Always remember that Satan is always accessible to the follower whose leader is inaccessible. Frustrated followers will find someone who will be accessible to them, and often they find the wrong type of leader. If you don’t want those you lead to follow someone else, you are going to have to be accessible them.
Fourth, accessible leadership is inconvenient but rewarding. You will always find that it is inconvenient to be accessible to your followers, but the rewards of seeing them grow far outweighs the inconvenience. The inconvenience of being accessible becomes convenient when your followers learn what you want them to do, which frees you up to help others. Leadership will always be inconvenient, and if you don’t want to be inconvenienced in life, don’t ever take a position of leadership.
Fifth, accessible leadership builds followers into leaders. Jesus built the disciples into great leaders because He was accessible. Your goal as a leader is to turn your followers into leaders. The only way this will happen is if your followers have access to you to learn what to do in every situation. The reward of accessible leadership is in building followers into leaders.