5 Lessons About Apex Leadership I Learned From Chris Tomlin

What is “Apex Leadership”?   Apex Leadership are the leadership practices, principles, and thought processes of those who are the best at what they do.  I am fascinated by Apex Leaders.  My family recently began attending Passion City Church in Atlanta on Sunday evenings.  PCC’s worship leader Chris Tomlin is the top male vocalist in Christian music currently.  He’s the best.  

I recently purchased his new cd And If Our God Is For Us which contains a bonus behind-the-scenes dvd.  What impressed me most on the dvd was Tomlin’s quote – “We’re not looking for just the next hit that’s going to last for 3 months.  We want something that’s going to last for people’s lives.  That becomes kind of a soundtrack in their lives.  That’s what I’m preparing for.  That’s what I’m asking for with these songs.”  Amazing statement!

The following are the leadership lessons I take from Tomlin’s statement:

  1. Apex Leadership Thinks Big – Most people would be thrilled to have a hit for three months.  Not Tomlin who has had many hits.  He wants songs that will last people’s lives.  The best leaders focus less on short-term success and more on long-term significance.
  2. Apex Leadership Is Timeless – Leaders, are you just trying to make it to month-end…or just hit your yearly numbers?  I’m not saying that is a bad thing.  However, the best leaders do things that are lasting and define their times.   
  3. Apex Leadership Changes Lives – While it is important to sell soap, software, widgets, or move inventory, those things do not change human life.  The best leaders create soundtracks that mark life change in others.  They create a message and frame it in such a way that it becomes useable to those in their sphere of influence.
  4. Apex Leadership Comes After A Time Of Preparation – Food tastes better coming out of a crock pot than it does a microwave.  The best leaders are developed over time.  It’s as if there is a maturing, a marinating process that is necessary.  I am reminded by Tomlin’s comments that it takes seasoned leadership to have a seasoned vision. 
  5. Effective Leadership Has A Specific Assignment – PCC’s Senior Pastor Louie Giglio stated at a recent service that each song on this cd had been prayed over and has a specific assignment.  Have you ever looked at your job, profession, or task as an assignment?  The best leaders understand the meaning of the platform they’ve been given and leverage that influence accordingly.

Thinking Big, Being Timeless, Changing Lives, Preparation, and Specific Assignments.  Would these terms describe your leadership?  If so, you may be an Apex Leader!  If not, what do you need to change to reach that level?

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About Brian Dodd on Leadership

I am a church stewardship and leadership consultant for INJOY Stewardship Solutions. This blog combines my personal passions of church, sports, pop culture and family into a single leadership resource. I trust your time on this site will create conversations and add value to your life.

One Response to “5 Lessons About Apex Leadership I Learned From Chris Tomlin”

  1. These 5 points are perfect for a real world business. The company I work for would eat this up.

    I know this is all well meaning but, and sorry for the but, this sounds like the makings of a church of humanity run by man for man,.. man replacing God’s Spirit with human leadership.

    Read your own words, “Leadership changes lives”. Isn’t this something only God can really do and do well?

    Worldly business wise, I give you 2 thumbs up but for church, I’m leary for such a worldly stategy. It gives the impression of man taking the reigns from God to do it our way.

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