The intricacy of organizational management demands a leader’s creative imagination. Evaluating the effectiveness and efficiency of a leader is a strenuous task. Organizational politics and undefined standards inhibit the successful assessment of leadership positions. Various leadership scholastic resources are accessible today, ranging from articles, books, personal coaching, podcasts, workshops, and seminars that contain various methods used in leadership appraisal. All the leadership education, training, and approaches available concur or differ in one way or concerning measuring leadership efficiency. The former assertion is caused by the disparity in methodologies, teaching angles, and opinions linked to secular and biblical approaches. This paper concentrates on focus, purpose, and end goal to examine both similarities and differences between the secular and biblical approaches for measuring leadership efficacy. The study explores both secular and biblical approaches portraying varying and homogeneous aspects. Biblical perspectives differ gravely with the secular conceptions about leadership as the latter operates on worldly philosophies and not divinity.
Both temporal and biblical leadership employ the servant leadership model. Service headship is founded principally on the idea that service meets the leader’s expectations, beneficiaries, and community. In this approach, the impact of the environment on service delivery is emphasized more than the growth of service front-runners (Beck, 2014). In the Bible, leaders were chosen by God to serve (Chauke, 2020). Similarly, in the secular setting, various states, communities, and organizations choose leaders via various methods like voting to serve.
Another common approach in both cases is the ethical leadership model. Ethical headship is demarcated as the normative demonstration of apt behavior through individual conduct and interactive relations, promoting similar behaviors to cohorts via reinforcement, decision-making, and two-way communication (Steenkamp, 2020). “One common approach in leadership studies is to see values as the internalized standards and criteria that guide leaders and followers toward their chosen goals” (Morrill, 2016, p.216). Like service headship, which emphasizes service-orientation towards both the leader and service recipients, the ethical governance model focuses on both the self and followers’ transformation? Accordingly, it is comprised of two scopes, moral leaders and moral followers. Concerning individual service, ethical front-runners are “moral individuals” concerned with continually managing and evaluating individual morals while showing the right behaviors when leading people. In both secular and biblical context, leaders act as “moral directors” to the people they serve. In both cases, leaders must always engage in open moral conversations with cohorts and empower them to behave ethically.
Further, both secular and biblical approaches share aspects of transformational headship. Transformational leadership is defined as the procedure in which a front-runner influences a disciple to act in a way that surpasses self-concern and outdoes their prospects (Miller, 2017). This is attained via charisma, intellectual motivation, personalized consideration, and inspirational stimulation. In both secular and biblical setups, leadership focuses on bringing change to the followers. For instance, in a secular context, leaders are expected to bring developments to the people they serve. Similarly, leaders in the Bible, like Jesus, brought changes to His followers, for instance, through healing the sick.
Differences between Biblical and Secular Leaderships
The principal dissimilarities between secular and biblical leadership approaches can be understood by scrutinizing the subsequent three significant aspects; focus, purpose, and end goal.
Leadership cannot be present without a leader. Biblical headship, which centers on Jesus as the utmost role model front-runner, aims at the leader’s heart. This idea is based on why every psychological issue, whether in the workplace or at home, can be mapped out to the heart matters inside the leader. Such issues include fear, weakness, pride, and lack of discernment (Roberts, 2015). On the other hand, Worldly headship inclines to undermine or dismiss the focus on the heart and internal change (Doǧru, 2019). Instead, it fashions initiatives and resolutions targeting the exterior conducts and achievements.
The purpose is the “Why” underlying what an individual does. The purpose is, therefore, what distinguishes biblical headship from others. In line with a recent study, leaders below 20 percent are aware of their purpose. This survey further reveals the inclination of old-fashioned headship resources to center on the “how” and “what,” but overlook the “Why.” Purposefully, biblical governance targets at replying the “Why.” In the Bible, Jesus taught much about the significance of purpose. It is written in Hebrews 12:2, “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God” (KJV, 2017). Jesus rejected riches, prominence, and earthly praise, for He was aware of His purpose –reconciling humankind with God (Parkinson, 2020). His work throughout His ministry on earth was built on this one purpose, and He never drifted from it.
Every front-runner leads to something. There is always an objective, desired result, and a long-term goal intended. Biblical headship focuses on bringing individuals into a nearer association with Jesus (Parkinson, 2020). This leadership objective does not use individuals as a way of achieving specific goals. Biblical governance is established on putting others first, love, forgiveness, and grace. Biblical leadership treats every human being as an object of God’s love. Besides, biblical leadership recognizes God to be the final authority and the audience’s overall creations. It acknowledges that front-runners are agents assigned by God with various duties.
According to Babyak (2018), biblical governance also ranks service to others as the uppermost method of leadership, as revealed in Jesus’ teachings documented in Matthew 20:24-28 “ And when the ten heard it, they were moved with indignation against the two brethren. But Jesus called them unto him, and said, ye, know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them. But, it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister, And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant: Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many” (KJB, 2017). On the other hand, secular leadership prioritizes the leader’s interests and well-being (Doǧru, 2019). In most cases, prominent leaders are given priorities in social places such as banks, places of worship, and social gatherings. While service to others is critical in the biblical leadership approach, secular leadership is dominated by selfishness and greed, which tends to be the end goal for most secular leaders.
Leadership is a word that has diverse meanings and approaches, depending on the circumstance it is applied. When examined keenly, it is deducible that there is an immense dissimilarity between leadership styles and practices for the larger society and headship in the Bible. Observably, biblical leadership is based on service to others, love, and grace. It is also worth noting that Jesus is the most outstanding leader role model in the biblical approach. In the Biblical context, the leaders are also chosen by God, while in the secular context, most leaders are chosen by people. From the comparisons above, it is recommendable that leaders in the secular context adopt good leadership qualities demonstrated by Jesus. They can do so by putting service to others first, ensuring a purposeful and productiveness-inclined headship besides transparency and sincerity while serving others.
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