Love Works Wednesday Link Up Week 2 – Patient

Last week, I kicked off a series of posts based on Love Works by Joel Manby.  (Click here to read my first post in this series).  A blogging friend of mine, Bill Grandi (The Cycleguy), recently challenged readers to consider linking up with him for several weeks with posts related to this excellent leadership book.  To read Bill’s introductory post for this series, click here.

For today, Bill and I (and anyone else who’s linking up with us) will be posting about the third chapters (Patient:  Have Self-Control In Difficult Situations).  Check out Bill’s take by clicking here.

If you recall from last week, Manby’s premise is that leadership is best when it comes from a position of agape love.  As the book unfolds, he uses I Corinthians 13 as the springboard to talk about love-based leadership.

If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.


Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.


Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.


And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

Since I already read the book, I thought it would be interesting to highlight some of the sentences I underlined when I read the book initially:

  • “Embracing patience is not about ignoring poor performance.”  (p. 36)

  • “The principle of patience means behaving with self-control in difficult situations.” (p. 36)

  • “I determined never to publicly admonish people in a way that would diminish their dignity.”  (p. 39)

  • “Whenever possible a reprimand should be given in private, and it should be given in a way that maintains a person’s dignity.  When we admonish our employees in private and in a patient, respectful manner, we go a long way toward ensuring our employees remain motivated and continue to grow.”  (p. 39)

  • “We must always admonish with patience and respect.  Our goal isn’t simply performance; it’s to protect the dignity of the people on our team.  Whether we correct and train our employees in public or in private, our goal is always to do so with respect and love.  After all, that’s exactly how we want to be treated.” (p. 41)

  • “For praise to be effective, it needs to be delivered by a leader who is patient enough to observe what his or her team has actually been doing and waits for the right moment to deliver that assessment.”  (p. 42)

  • “It takes patience to praise with specifics, and praise without specifics can be worse than no praise at all.”  (p. 43)

  • “To be truly effective, praise must be legitimate and pointed.”  (p. 46)

  • “Admonish in private whenever possible; be stern but avoid malice; be specific; get people “back on the horse” with pointed praise; move on without a grudge.”  (p. 49)

Bill’s post focuses on utilizing self-control/patience when reprimanding someone.  This chapter in Love Works clearly gives some great insight and advice for addressing poor performance.  Another side of the patience spectrum mentioned in this chapter is how we choose to praise someone for a job well done.  Have you ever received a compliment that seemed vague and unspecific?  It kind of seems like you’re being coddled – that someone is just trying to suck up to you.  Manby reminds us that we need to be thoughtful and specific in complimenting someone.  This takes self-control and patience to deliver a message that is meaningful and deserved.

I have been learning how to apply this type of praise as I’ve joined and participated in Matt McWilliams‘ Thank You Thursday Revolution.  In Matt’s initial post about the revolution, he encourages leaders to write handwritten Thank You Notes to deserving team members.  He charges readers and Thank You Thursday Revolutionaries to be specific in reasons for providing appreciation.  As leaders, we obviously need to reprimand, but we must not forget to praise our team members.  There’s amazing power in simple and specific gratitude and it starts with us!

As we continue with Love Works Wednesday, I want to challenge you to think about your leadership from a whole new perspective.  Whether you lead in the business world, the church world, or in another pocket of the world, try leading with love.  Not love the feeling, but with love the action.  Lead in a way that puts other first.  Lead in a way that represents how you’d honestly like to be treated by others.  Lead in a way that preserves the dignity of others.  Over the next seven weeks, Bill and I will continue to explore love based leadership.  I hope you’ll read along, jump into the comments, and maybe even change the way you lead.  Until then, consider getting a copy of Love Works for yourself, and see how this book might change you and your leadership.

What is one thing you can do differently this week to lead people with more patience and love than before?  How have you been led with patient and love-based leadership?