BEST PRACTICE IN LEADERSHIP TRAINING
Written by G Brian Jones PhD
I. Background and Mission
Over the last eight years, I have had the opportunity to witness some of the amazing growth and impact of Arrow Leadership. For this, I thank God. Arrow’s history dates back to 1991 when Dr. Leighton Ford envisioned Arrow and set in motion what has evolved into a world champion in the field of Christian leadership development for church, parachurch, not-for-profits, and marketplace leaders.
Arrow targets intentional growth in each leader’s character and personalized skill development as a result of an extensive multi-rater assessment. This is accomplished by focusing on Jesus’ model of leadership development of investing in small groups of strategically selected leaders over an extended time period.
This North American ministry takes its name from Isaiah 49:2: “He (God) shall make me as a polished arrow”. Arrow seeks to invest in the lives of a few who are Kingdom seekers, not empire builders; proven leaders with potential, not potential leaders; called, not interested; gifted, not average; authentic, not superficial; relevant, not cliché; teachable, not just knowledgeable.
By assisting leaders to cultivate a balanced mix of calling, character, and competency, Arrow seeks lasting impact for the Kingdom. Its concise mission is to develop leaders who are led more by Jesus, who lead more like Jesus, and who lead more to Jesus.
II. Leadership Development Methods
All Arrow training is presented by a cadre of impressive faculty teaching in their fields of excellence. The staff is best represented by Reverend Dr. Carson Pue and his talented and gracious wife Brenda Pue. Brenda is one of Arrow’s first directors while Carson is one of its first graduates.
Arrow Leadership offers two streams:
- Emerging Stream
- Executive Stream
The focus of the Emerging Stream is on proven ministry leaders aged 25-40 years. Each participant engages in a two-year journey through teaching in North American “residentials” at wonderful locations such as Keats Island off Vancouver Island (Canada); one-to-one and small group mentoring with “Leadership Partners”, assessments using self reports and surveys completed by selected raters, and spiritual guidance. The two-year program ends with onsite graduation and a banquet to which each graduate’s spouse or significant supporter is invited.
The Executive Stream is an 18-month program of individualized learning tailored to current executives in ministry and marketplace positions. It is grounded by the opportunity for spiritual connection, growth, and restoration. The Executive Stream integrates an understanding of Jesus (as the leader of leaders) through worship, devotionals, prayer, as well as the curriculum itself.
This stream includes three residential learning experiences: (1) authentic leadership, (2) strategic organizational leadership, and (3) effective Christian management. Current locations include: Vancouver, Phoenix and Atlanta. Leadership skill expansion requires the above three, five-day residentials, extensive personal assessment and feedback (as in the aforementioned Emerging Stream); development of a customized leadership development plan for each participant; on-site individual and peer mentoring, prayer, and alumni support. Happily, once again Leadership Partners provide confidential mentoring coupled with off-site encouragement. Arrow faculty and staff are also available for on-site consultations. Peer mentoring in small groups also provides a critical opportunity to interact with, learn from, and build friendships with colleagues in organizational management.
Leadership modules are conducted by faculty who communicate from a framework of real-life organizational leadership experience, a foundation of academic research, and a biblical worldview. These learning modules are designed to meet the practical needs of CEO’s and other key executives. Modules address topics such as: Leading like Jesus, Strategic Planning, Financial Management, Issues in Human Resources, Innovation and Change, Marketing and Fundraising, Developing Your Team, Board Relations, and Character of a Leader.
III. Ministry Impact
Arrow Leadership has come along side more than 1,400 leaders worldwide! Arrow estimates that these alumni have a sphere of influence of 1,700 people each.
Arrow staff conduct follow-up assessments of alumni to determine the longitudinal impact of Arrow on leadership development practices. Relative to our interest in the evaluation of mentoring initiatives, over and over again, when leaders reflect on their Arrow journey they state that their Leadership Partner was a key factor in their leadership growth and the highlight of Arrow journey. The data demonstrate that God uses the encouragement, prayer, coaching, wisdom, and even loving confrontation of Leadership Partners to facilitate spiritual breakthroughs in the lives of Arrow leaders.
In terms of organizational impact, both programs are so successful and the landscape of leadership is changing so rapidly that Arrow’s Board of Directors has recently decided to restructure to include a president concentrating on Canada and another attending to expansion in the United States. Dr. Carson Pue will serve as the CEO of Arrow Leadership and oversee the work throughout North America. As well, he will continue to encourage and inspire the Arrow Alliance, fostering Christian leadership practices in 20 countries around the globe. What a credit to God’s interventions through the Holy Spirit worldwide!
IV. For Further Information
Please visit www.arrowleadership.org