DCL 3.1 Instruction | The Influence Myth

Video Presentation: Tom Atema, VP of International Ministries and Strategic Partnerships, EQUIP

You may be able to grant someone a leadership title or position, but you cannot grant him or her real lead­ership. The position does not make the leader; the leader makes the position. Influence must be earned. A position gives you an opportunity to try out your leadership. Given some time, you will earn your level of influence – for better or worse.


Biblical Case Study: Rehoboam (2 Chronicles 10:6-19)

When Solomon died, his son Rehoboam ascended to the throne. He was now at the pinnacle of power, holding the highest position in the land. But it soon became apparent that the vast majority of the people would not follow him. As a result of his poor leadership, the Bible sadly states, “So Israel has been in rebel­lion against the house of David to this day.” (2 Chronicles 10:19)

His title and position did not cause the people to follow him. To the contrary, his “power trip” resulted in the collapse of his kingdom. Holding the top position does not confer influence upon the leader. Why did he lack influence?

1.  He was self centred.

2.  He had never learned to listen to wise and experienced leaders.

3.  He loved power more than he loved his people.

4.  He rejected advice when it did not agree with his personal desires.

5.  He never understood that leadership is servanthood.

6.  He never connected relationally with those he wanted to lead.

Rehoboam violated the “Law of Connection” in The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership: “Leaders touch a heart before they ask for a hand.” He failed to discern and meet the needs of his people.



  • What steps are you taking to gain influence with the people you lead?



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