Jimmy Fallon Schools Us on Leadership

Slate-night-jimmy-fallon-50everal people have written about what we can learn about leadership from Jimmy Fallon.  Check out this recent article by Eric Clayton and this 2014 article by MaryAnn McKibben Dana.

Sadly, many of our congregations are diminished by poor leadership and those leaders aren’t particularly interested in (or aware that they need) ongoing leadership training.  So, here’s the thing: if our leaders aren’t going to take classes or get coaching or read helpful articles, then maybe we’d be willing to pick up some pointers from late night TV.

So let’s make this easy:  People love Jimmy Fallon.  He is both crush-worthy and supremely likeable.

But he can also teach us how to increase our capacity to lead.

1- He lifts up his team.  Steve Higgins is “so great.”  He regularly asks us to “give it up for The Roots.”  Even if there are issues on a church staff, it’s crucial for a pastor to back up her/his leaders.  Have fun with them.  Appreciate them. Back. Them. Up.

2- He writes “Thank You” notes.  There are so many people who contribute to the life of our community.  Strong leaders are appreciative for both the grand and the trivial.

3- He invites people known for one thing to try new things.  Emma Stone lip syncs.  Don Cheadle sings R&B.  Daniel Radcliffe raps.  Imagine if we invited the long-time treasurer or an experienced Bible study leader to try something new and fun?

What if each of us adopted these three simple practices this Lent?  And if Jimmy Fallon inspires you, consider taking a class, reading a book, or subscribing to some articles.  We are called to lead to God’s glory and we can do better.

4 responses to “Jimmy Fallon Schools Us on Leadership

  1. I particularly like #3. When I was an interim pastor recently, I asked a young woman from the congregation to speak during worship. She was fantastic, even though she was so scared. I think #3 is about believing that people can do more than their past demonstrates, and, that the gifts of the Spirit are not personal possessions, but are given for moment and circumstance when needed.


  2. Yes! And the joy he shares is infectious. We could use so much more of that too.


  3. Pingback: » Jimmy Fallon Schools Us on Leadership

  4. Pingback: This Week’s Links « Timothy Siburg

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