According to J. Oswald Sanders, here are some ways to investigate your potential:
– Have you ever broken a bad habit? To lead others, you must master your appetites.
– Do you keep self-control when things go wrong? The leader who loses control under adversity forfeits respect and influence. A leader must be calm in crisis and resilient in disappointment.
– Do you think independently? A leader must use the best ideas of others to make decisions. A leader cannot wait for others make up his or her mind.
– Can you handle criticism? Can you profit from it? The humble person can learn from petty criticism, even malicious criticism.
– Can you turn disappointment into creative new opportunity?
– Do you readily gain the cooperation of others and win their respect and confidence?
– Can you exert discipline without making a power play? True leadership is an internal quality of the spirit and needs no show of external force.
– Are you a peacemaker? A leader must be able to reconcile with opponents and make peace where arguments have created hostility.
– Do people trust you with difficult and delicate situations?
– Can you induce people to do happily some legitimate thing that they would not normally wish to do?
– Can you accept opposition to your viewpoint or decision without taking offense? Leaders always face opposition.
– Can you make and keep friends? Your circle of loyal friends is an index of your leadership potential.
– Do you depend on the praise of others to keep you going? Can you hold steady in the face of disapproval and even temporary loss of confidence?
– Are you at ease in the presence of strangers? Do you get nervous in the presence of your superior?
– Are you interested in people? All types? All races? No prejudice?
– Are you tactful? Can you anticipate how your words will affect a person?
– Is your will strong and steady? Leaders cannot vacillate or cannot drift with the wind.
– Can you forgive? Or do you nurse resentments and harbor ill-feelings towards those who have injured you?
– Are you reasonably optimistic? Pessimism and leadership do not mix.
– Do you feel a master passion such as that of Paul, who said, “This one thing I do!” Such a singleness of motive will focus your energies and powers on the desired objective. Leaders need a strong focus.
– Do you welcome responsibility?
Copied from pages 36-37 of J. Oswald Sanders’ classic book “Spiritual Leadership.”