Why are some people obeyed and some others ignored? Can you imagine what a great nation we would be if our leaders could make people obey them gladly? Jesus was able to make people follow his instructions. He told Peter to feed the flock of God and that is exactly what Peter did. “So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs” (John 21:15). If you call yourself a leader, ask yourself, “Do people carry out my instructions?” You ought to develop the art of making people obey your instructions. There are several things you can do.
Ways to make people obey you gladly
1. Do not give unreasonable instructions. This will set the stage for people to disobey you. People rebel against wicked and unreasonable men. Give reasonable instructions that make people obey you gladly.
2. Teach your followers why certain things have to be done.
When people understand why they are doing something, they often do it better! Make people see that your instructions are for their own good. That is why, for example, I preach on: 'Fifty Reasons Why Christians Should Be Soul Winners'. I want people to understand the last instruction of Jesus.
3. Let the people see that you obey instructions yourself. Many rebellious people do not realise that they are teaching their followers to be rebellious by their very actions. The Centurion who sent for Jesus illustrated this principle beautifully.
For I also am a man set under authority, having under me soldiers, and I say unto one, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it.
This man was enumerating the instructions which he had given and which had been obeyed. But he was careful to let us know that he also was under authority. In other words, he himself was obeying instructions. The army officer often has to lead people to their deaths. How does he make young men sacrifice their lives on the frightening fields of war? By leading the charge himself when he's told to do so. If you cannot make people gladly do things they naturally do not like doing, then you are not a leader. Develop this art of making people obey you gladly and people will always wonder about the team who work with you and how they love to sacrifice and to serve.
4. Get rid of complaining and murmuring individuals. Such people poison the atmosphere, make everyone feel that they are into a bad thing and lower the morale of the group. It is very important to maintain a cheerful spirit in the workplace. Systematically eradicate complainers and murmurers from your system.
5. Reward people accordingly.
For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.
Even Jesus expected his reward. Jesus was motivated by the thought of his reward. Rewards are some of the highest form of motivation in existence. Why do you think an athlete runs around for hours every day? Why do you think boxers subject themselves to severe, dangerous and life-threatening knocks on the head? It is because of the joy of a million dollars or more that will come after the knocking is over.
The joy that is set before people will make them do almost anything. Rewards can make people do almost anything! People who have died for the cause of Christ died willingly, thinking of the reward that lay ahead. When Jesus spoke to Peter, he told him about his death. He predicted that Peter would die in a way that he might not like.
Verily, verily, I say unto thee, When thou wast young, thou girdest thyself, and walkedst whither thou wouldest: but when thou shalt be old, thou shalt stretch forth thy hands, and another shall gird thee, and carry thee whither thou wouldest not. This spake he, signifying by what death he should glorify God. And when he had spoken this, he saith unto him, follow me.
John 21:18, 19
He told Peter to follow him even to that end. Peter was willing and obedient. Perhaps, the key that made Peter willing to die was the fact that Jesus himself had set the example. Jesus had shown that there was a great reward in following.
You see, leadership is all about setting examples. When a leader leads the way personally, his words become more powerful. Do you want your words to be respected? Do you want to be such a powerful leader that people would be prepared to die for your cause? I believe you do! It's time to set the example and lead the way.
Culled from 'The Art of Leadership'
By Dag Heward-Mills