Sharpening Leaders

Resources to Lead Different

To become a Jesus-centered leader who lives and leads well, you need to regularly refresh and refocus your head, heart and hands. Arrow Leadership’s blog, Sharpening Leaders, is written to support you on your journey. Each month we provide spiritually nourishing, biblically challenging and practically helpful posts to help you fulfill your calling and lead different.

Don’t Underestimate Prayer

Writing about prayer can often be a quick and easy way to stir guilt. Personally, I want to pray more. But while I am making small strides in the right direction, there still seems to be a big gap between … Continued

Why Drivenness Should Be a Red Flag for Leaders

Let me start with a disclaimer. Please know that I deeply long to see God’s purposes accomplished. I earnestly pray His Kingdom come and will be done. And I absolutely agree that all Christian leaders need to be good stewards … Continued

Choose to “Lean in” Right Now

“Thirty Ways to Lead Different” celebrates Arrow Leadership’s 30th anniversary with a 30-week series providing insights and practical tools to help you lead with Jesus at the center.   At the start of every new class of the Arrow Leadership … Continued

The Key to Vision in Crazy Times

“Thirty Ways to Lead Different” celebrates Arrow Leadership’s 30th anniversary with a 30-week series providing insights and practical tools to help you lead with Jesus at the center.   Vision matters! Having vision (or not) impacts how you live and … Continued

A Prayer for a New Season

“Thirty Ways to Lead Different” celebrates Arrow Leadership’s 30th anniversary with a 30-week series providing insights and practical tools to help you lead with Jesus at the center. May this prayer bring you fresh focus and strength to live and … Continued

5 Keys for a Fresh Start this Fall

I like fresh starts. They bring a renewed energy to dream and imagine new possibilities. There’s also a redemptive side—a fresh start means I can try again. A fresh start is partly a mindset shift, but it can also be … Continued

Stay or Go? Read This Before You Make a Decision

Many Christian staffing and search firms are anticipating a disproportionate number of ministry leaders will leave their current assignments as we emerge from COVID-19. On the surface, this prediction makes some sense. Various ministry leaders may have intended to transition … Continued

7 Principles for Developing Others

We are turning the corner toward summer and, I pray, to the other side of COVID-19! While rest and recovery should be two key objectives for many leaders this summer, we can also begin to retool and refocus for the new … Continued

Three Transformative Conversations For Your Team

  Conversations matter! Over the last year, you have had many conversations you likely never expected to have with your team. Conversations about the urgent and important need of safety, adapting to new rules and keeping the ministry going in … Continued

Jesus Centered Launches Today!

 Dr. Steve Brown’s new book, Jesus Centered: Focusing on Jesus In A Distracted World  is now available to order! Place your order today and for a limited time sign-up below to receive a FREE discussion guide. We pray this … Continued

Now Available for Preorder!

Dear Sharpening Leaders Subscriber, We have some exciting news to share! Jesus Centered: Focusing on Jesus In A Distracted World, Dr. Steve Brown’s new book releasing April 12, is now available for preorder! Place your order today and for a … Continued

“Be Loved” This Week

This content has been adapted from Dr. Steve A. Brown’s upcoming book, Jesus Centered – Focusing on Jesus in a Distracted World launching April 12. I’ll never forget the time a painting made me realize how little I understood God’s … Continued

Announcing My New Book!

Dear Sharpening Leaders Subscriber, You are the first to hear! My new book, Jesus Centered – Focusing on Jesus in a Distracted World is set to launch April 12! Please watch this short video below to learn more about the … Continued

How to Process the Sexual Sin in Christian Leaders

Tragically and sorrowfully, the list just keeps getting longer. I’m referring to the list of pastors and ministry leaders who fall to sexual sin. To the shock of many, the list now includes the name of the late apologist Ravi … Continued

Two Reasons to Find Contentment Today

Are you feeling content these days? Saying you are content isn’t easy on a normal day. All it takes for me to head toward discontentment is one piece of gravel in my shoe, slow Wi-Fi, getting stuck in the slow … Continued

One Way to Lead Different Right Now

It’s only been a few days since we said “good riddance” to 2020, but already this new year doesn’t feel like a fresh start. To be blunt, it feels like a fresh mess or at least continued darkness and difficulty. … Continued

Guide for End of Year Reflection

To engage this exercise: Set aside an hour. Find a quiet space. Bring a journal or paper. Pray. Reflect. To learn more about how to reset and reflect about 2020 visit: https://www.arrowleadership.org/blog/general-leadership/three-key-areas-to-reflect-reset-after-2020/ Click here to download Guide for End of … Continued

Game-Changer Encouragement to End or Start a Year

It’s hard to believe! We are closing in on the end of 2020! This year has been long, unprecedented and difficult on so many levels. A few years back, I remember hearing about “2020 Vision” and “2020 Strategic Plans.” Vision … Continued

Three Key Areas to Reflect & Reset After 2020

Every year at this time I share a free tool to help you reflect on the year. Taking time for reflection is a critical practice for leaders. Reflection fosters learning, stimulates growth, calls for course corrections, identifies priorities and renews … Continued

If You Ever Feel Like Giving Up…

Faithfulness isn’t critical when a crisis erupts, because we usually jump in full of adrenaline. We instinctually do whatever it takes to survive during the initial period of a crisis. However, faithfulness becomes critical when a crisis moment turns into … Continued

Tim Tang - October Leader

Snapshots of Jesus-Centered Leadership: Tim Tang

Our world desperately needs Jesus-centered leaders! We trust this interview with Dr. Tim Tang (Arrow Class 20) will encourage and equip you to be led more by Jesus, lead more like Jesus and lead more to Jesus. Tim equips and … Continued

Who Do You Go To?

If you are a leader, you are a “go to.” Maybe you are the “go to” for your church, your team or your organization. People go to you for answers, for direction, for help, for care and for spiritual support. … Continued

Snapshots of Jesus-Centered Leadership: Paul Turner

Our world desperately needs Jesus-centered leaders! We trust this interview with Paul Turner (Arrow Class 41) who serves as International Director of Latin Link will encourage and equip you to be led more by Jesus, lead more like Jesus and … Continued

How to Turn the Tables on Discouragement

There’s a very real and destructive pandemic under way. I could be talking about COVID-19, but I’m not. I am talking about a pandemic I hear in almost daily coaching sessions with Christian leaders. This pandemic is called discouragement. Discouragement … Continued

Snapshots of Jesus-Centered Leadership: Jennifer Groves

Our world desperately needs Jesus-centered leaders! We trust this interview with Lieutenant-Colonel Jennifer Groves (Arrow Class 46) will encourage and equip you to be led more by Jesus, lead more like Jesus and lead more to Jesus. Jennifer serves as … Continued

Six Key Focus Areas You Don’t Want to Miss

Focus is hard right now. For starters, COVID fatigue is real. It’s hard to keep focused in the midst of what’s becoming a long-term grind. Just tuning out and ducking for cover in the increasingly ugly battles on social media … Continued

A Leader’s “True North” for Health

It was a warm summer evening when eight of us found ourselves sailing off the coast of Vancouver Island in the middle of the night. A group member took on the role of instructor and proceeded to show us how … Continued

Snapshots of Jesus-Centered Leadership: Josh Stewart

Our world desperately needs Jesus-centered leaders! We trust this interview with Josh Stewart (Arrow Class 30), Lead Pastor at Bedford Community Church in Bedford Hills, New York will encourage and equip you to be led more by Jesus, lead more like … Continued

Harnessing the Power of Perspective

Perspective is critically important for leaders. It’s easy to lose sight of the forest when you are in the midst of the trees. A different perspective can change everything. I love drone-camera video of familiar sights. The view from above … Continued

Snapshots of Jesus-Centered Leadership: Peter Lim

Our world desperately needs Jesus-centered leaders! We trust this brief interview with Peter Lim (Arrow Class 22) who serves as lead pastor of 4Pointes Church of Atlanta will encourage and equip you to be led more by Jesus, lead more … Continued

Two Powerful Prayers for Reflecting on Injustice

The juxtaposition of two separate events—in the same week—is just mind-boggling. The first event took place on Monday, May 25, 2020. That Memorial Day evening George Floyd had his neck pinned to the ground by a police officer’s knee for … Continued

Six Questions You Should Be Asking as COVID-19 Shifts

The last few months have been a hard grind for everyone. For some, the last few months have been brutal. Hard decisions, long hours, personal risk, job loss, financial ruin, loneliness, sickness and even death have been uncommonly common. In … Continued

Five Simple Practices for Better High-Stakes Meetings

Like it or not, meetings are prime time for leaders. Meetings matter. Meetings are where next steps are discerned and big decisions happen. The move to virtual meetings and dispersed teams has added new challenges at a time when the … Continued

Seven Practices to Keep Your Head Clear

Keeping your head clear is incredibly important. You need to think well to lead well, especially in times of crisis and challenge. Yet it’s really easy to find yourself frazzled and fatigued—and to find your headspace foggy—rather than focused. Despite … Continued

Five Questions to Discover Opportunities in the Midst of Crisis

Times of crisis and uncertainty usually bring constraints. In the case of COVID-19, there are a many unprecedented constraints. Public gatherings and movement have been restricted. Staff and volunteers may be limited. The ability to physically meet with people is … Continued

Five Choices to Lead Different

Leadership is hard at the best of times. Add in a crisis and hard can go to a whole new level. Thankfully, there’s Someone who understands. Leading was even hard for Jesus. He faced incredible resistance. There were endless and … Continued

A Special Easter Message

Adapted from a letter to our Arrow community.  The chaos increased by the hour. Uncertainty and fear took hold. Panicked people began to fend for themselves. Those sentences could easily be headlines describing these days of COVID-19. They could also … Continued

Five Keys for Wisdom in Uncertain Times

Wisdom. Do you need some as you live and lead this week? Wisdom is a critical need in uncertain times. It’s a pre-requisite and distinctive of leading different. Wisdom is also something we can seek and find. Here are five keys … Continued

Five Keys to Wisdom in Uncertain Times

Wisdom. Do you need some as you live and lead this week? Wisdom is a critical need in uncertain times. It’s a prerequisite and distinctive of leading differently. Wisdom is also something we can seek and find. The following is five … Continued

Three Tips for Contingency Planning

Good planning isn’t our idea, it’s God’s idea. Read through the Bible and it quickly becomes apparent God has a plan. God’s plan informs and guides salvation, the Church, the future and much more. So whether we face times of … Continued

Three Tips for Crisis Communication With Your Team

What does it look like to communicate well and lead differently with your team in times of crisis? Here are three tips for crisis communication: 1. Accurately Assess and Convey Your Current Reality Because a crisis ushers in uncertainty, change, … Continued

A Special Easter Message

Adapted from a letter to our Arrow community.  The chaos increased by the hour. Uncertainty and fear took hold. Panicked people began to fend for themselves. Those sentences could easily be headlines describing the early days of COVID-19. They could … Continued

Opportunities in the Midst of Crisis

Times of crisis and uncertainty usually bring constraints. In the case of COVID-19, there are a many unprecedented constraints. Public gatherings and movement have been restricted. Staff and volunteers may be limited. The ability to physically meet with people is … Continued

Where Does Your Help Come From?

These days can be very overwhelming. No one expected to be leading in times like these or facing the challenges before us. Yet, here we are. During an early morning run last week, my mind was full, and my heart … Continued

Leading in Chaotic Times

This is a special SharpeningLeaders post in response to COVID-19 Regular, everyday leadership challenges can be really stretching. When we add in the chaos, confusion and complexity of something like COVID-19, it’s easy to be overwhelmed. So how should Jesus-centered … Continued

How to Deal With Temptations

Fishing lures fascinate me. From a human perspective, they look ridiculous. It makes no sense that something so big, flashy, shiny and laced with sharp hooks would be inviting to a fish. But if you are a hungry fish looking … Continued

Putting Feet to Faith in your Business

The right business practices tend to maximize revenue, keep costs low and ensure the impact and profitability of a company. Demonstrating love for your fellow man is a foundational ‘right’ practice for Christian entrepreneurs. So, how can you infuse your … Continued

Company Values on Display: The Case For Chick Fil-A

Chick Fil-A is one of the most successful and recognizable, Christian-owned brands in the world. Founded in 1946 by devout Southern Baptist, S. Truett Cathy, Chick Fil-A went through several iterations before rebranding as Chick Fil-A in 1967 and setting … Continued

Tips and Tools for Leaders: Tips For Training Opportunities

Watch this video! Whether you are a veteran communicator or gearing up to share your first Sunday school lesson, I trust these lessons will have a takeaway or two. To watch, click on the image above. Click Here to Download “Tips For … Continued

A Small Change That Makes a Big Impact

Remember all those new year’s resolutions made just six weeks ago? As we started a new year and decade, many people had high hopes for making significant changes in their life and leadership. However, repeated studies show that over 80% … Continued

hiring more like Jesus

Are You Managing Your Business Relationships as Jesus Would?

Growing your business is challenging and fun. But growth means working with more people, and that requires close attention to whom you invite to work in your company. Whether it’s a new partner, supplier, or employee, new people create complexity … Continued

Values Driven Marketing

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know just how much things have changed over the past few years in our business, political and economic worlds regarding people’s relationship with the truth. The current atmosphere of “fake news” and … Continued

Tips and Tools for Leaders: You At Your Best

Watch this short video for a practical tool to help you leverage your impact and make the greatest contribution to God’s mission. To view, click on the image above.  Click Here to Download “Tic-Tac-Toe Tool” Cheering you on to Lead … Continued

Dealing with Uncertainty as a Christian Business Leader

It seems that no matter how you plan the unexpected happens, and the uncertainty of business can certainly cause stress and frustration, when you’re the one that the buck stops with. Market values fluctuate, customer behaviors change, and your wins … Continued

Three Keys to Living Out Your Calling

I love these kind of days. Over the course of twenty-four hours I spent time with three alumni from the Arrow Leadership Program. Each one left me inspired, encouraged and energized. Let me briefly introduce you to each one of … Continued

Things we can learn from Strive Masiyiwa’s life

Last week we discussed the life and faith of Strive Masiyiwa, the billionaire founder of Econet Wireless, Africa’s largest cellular service provider. Strive’s life is a truly impressive testament to the power of faith and love, and, as an outspoken … Continued

A Blueprint to Kickstart Your 2020

A new year and new decade are around the corner! Have you taken any time to reflect on what will help you “run with perseverance the race marked out” for you in 2020? Here are six questions designed to help … Continued

Tips and Tools for Leaders: Meetings Matter

Click Here to Download 8 Tips to Maximize Meetings  Cheering you on to Lead Different, Dr. Steve Brown President, Arrow Leadership steveb@arrowleadership.org

Tips and Tools for Leaders: Delegation

 Click Here to Download Six Tips for Effective Delegation Cheering you on to Lead Different, Dr. Steve Brown President, Arrow Leadership steveb@arrowleadership.org

10 Tips to Turn Up the Temperature on Prayer

Prayer is often a guilt area for Christian leaders. We want to help you move from guilt to growth and to Lead Different. Here are ten practical ideas to turn the temperature up on prayer, particularly prayer for people who … Continued

Leading more like Jesus

The Power of Principled Leadership

Leadership matters. Great leaders are a strategic leverage point for personal, business and organizational influence and transformation. There are now literally hundreds of interpretations of what constitutes great leadership. Too often the focus is on position, power, or charisma. Images … Continued

Tips and Tools For Leaders: CEO

Click Here and Download 150 Encouraging Words   Cheering you on to Lead Different, Dr. Steve Brown President, Arrow Leadership steveb@arrowleadership.org

Five Practices to Help You See People

A few years ago my family and I were visiting a church for the first time. We had almost reached the front door, when a man abruptly pushed past us. It was odd and it wasn’t a friendly welcome for … Continued

4 Strategies to Overcome Discouragement

Relentlessly pounding the pavement, responding to customer demands and trying to stay ahead of the competition can be daunting. Feeling like the only one who really sees the potential of your business is lonely, and shouldering the full weight of … Continued

Keeping your business on target

Are You On Target?

Imagine you’re on an airplane and the pilot announces, ‘Ladies and gentlemen, pardon the interruption, but I need to let you know our flight pattern is one degree off today, and we’ll be landing in Chicago instead of New York. … Continued

Sharpening Your Marketing Message

Who’s the hero in your business? Hopefully you said, ‘the customer, of course!’ Now, take a look at your website and your promotional materials. Is the customer the hero there? Most marketing materials shout about all the amazing things the … Continued

The 19 Marketing Traction Channels

All Marketing Channels Are Not Created Equal!

Do you know where to find your potential customers? Where they hang out physically, what groups do belong to, what restaurants they frequent? And where are they digitally? What online groups, news channels or websites do they frequent? These are … Continued

The light of your life

Finding the WHY in your marketing message

Why does your company exist? In his now-famous TEDTalk, Simon Sinek says, “People don’t buy what you do (make or build), they buy why you do it.” Do you know why you do what you do? Why are you running … Continued

Six Steps to Stay Back From the Edge

Have you ever been hiking and come across a sign that read “Stay Back From The Edge”? At first glance, these kinds of signs seem ridiculous. After all, who would get so close to the edge that they’d go over? … Continued

targeted marketing can help tend your flock

Finding the Right Target for Your Marketing

Much has been written and spoken of Jesus’ finely-tuned storytelling and teaching skills, but one of the most overlooked parts of his ministry was how much he embodied the most potent, powerful parts of targeted marketing. It may seem strange … Continued

Jesus Christ, Master Storyteller

The Storytelling Mastery of Jesus

Have you ever experienced bad customer service? Sure, you have. Now, how many times have you told that story? I bet when you share that story, the emotion of the experience comes flooding back. Stories are compelling; people relate to … Continued

crushing your constraints

Crushing Your Constraints

  How often have you heard yourself saying, ‘If I only had more (fill in the blank), then I could (fill in the blank)?’ If I had more funds, then I could do more marketing. If I had more staff, then we could scale faster. If I had more … Continued

The Power of Asking Big Questions

  Who’s Asking You Great Questions? Jesus was masterful at asking questions. His questions enlightened, challenged and drilled into people’s deepest places. His subject matter was often surprising and sometimes perplexing, but for those willing to engage, his questions were … Continued

How To Multiply Your Impact

If you knew you had three years left in your role, what would be your top priorities? I love this question. It requires careful reflection, and it forces you to identify big-picture long-term priorities. It gets to the question, “When … Continued