May 1, 2009 Tony Morgan

Leaders are not normal.

Had a great conversation with Kem today. She knows me, so she was trying to beat some sense into me.

We served together in ministry for a number of years, so she knows some stuff that others do not. She confirmed some things about me that I already knew. She didn’t pull any punches on the stuff that needs to be refined. God’s still doing a work in me. I think God uses people like Kem to do some of that work faster.

In our conversation, she reminded me of this. These are her words:

Leaders are not normal. They are:

  • the strong
  • the rebels
  • the skeptical
  • the intelligent
  • the independent
  • the positive deviants

Try to control these people, and you’ll never be able to rally their potential. Try to normalize these people, and you’ll never be able to sustain their positive impact.

That’s why Kem is one of the wisest people I know. She puts into simple language some of the most difficult concepts for us to grasp.

Leadership is complicated. Leading leaders is even more complicated.

I still don’t know how to do it. I’m still learning. If you get this figured out before I do, will you let me know?


Tony Morgan

Tony is the Founder and Lead Strategist of The Unstuck Group. Started in 2009, The Unstuck Group has served 500 churches throughout the United States and several countries around the world. Previously, Tony served on the senior leadership teams of three rapidly growing churches including NewSpring Church in South Carolina. He has five published books including, The Unstuck Church, and, with Amy Anderson, he hosts The Unstuck Church Podcast which has thousands of listeners each month.
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Comments (12)

  1. I need a Kem. God is challenging those areas in me and reminding me to lead leaders with these principles in mind. Thnx Tony and Kem.

  2. I’ve struggled to put in words for years how God has wired me, now I’m seeing it in my 4 year old daughter, this is a super helpful and positive post, sometimes I feel like the X-men, Mutans…

  3. Tony, I’m curious on the normalizing as well, it’s actually been something on my mind.

    When you say being normalized, are you meaning something like downplaying the potential and ability of the leader to that of a more a “follower” type person in an organization?

    I ask simply because, the Lord having called me to be a leader and change agent, the majority of companies I have been in I have not been normalized (or caged up, is kind of how I consider it) and great things have happened. However, for those companies that I feel I have been “normalized” (or held back, is really how I feel) I immediately see its effect on my work, my future vision for the company, and my ability to execute on it.

    Here’s another question with that: To not be normalized is to be treated as an exception. As someone who isn’t just like everyone else. Say you are called to be a leader, and you function better outside the normalized state- how does that play into being humble, considering others better than yourself?

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