This little nugget from Seth Godin's book, Tribes, really resonated with me. I have seen this played out over the course of several jobs/ministry opportunities. It is something that I keep in mind whenever I am in a leadership position.
The easiest thing is to react. The second easiest thing is to respond. But the hardest thing is to initiate.
Reacting is what your body does when you take the wrong kind of medicine. Reacting is intuitive and instinctive and usually dangerous. Managers react.
Responding is much better alternative. You respond to external stimuli with thoughtful action. Response is always better than reaction.
But both pale in comparison to initiative. Initiating is really and truly difficult, and that’s what leaders do. They see something others are ignoring and they jump on it. They cause the events that others have to react to. They make change.
Initiative is such an astonishingly successful tool: because it’s rare.