I endeavor to be a lifelong learner. I believe this pursuit keeps me active, engaged, and humble. Bill Nye, The Science Guy, once said, “Everyone you meet will know something you don’t.” I agree.

Recently I met a big bunch of people I didn’t know when I attended a simulcast of The Global Leadership Summit, sponsored by the Willow Creek Association. This two-day conference brings together leaders in more than 600 locations in North America each August to explore faith-based beliefs and strategies for growth and development. The goal of the conference was for participants to leave with renewed vision, inspiration, and practical skills to make an impact.

Learning is often enhanced in community, so if you are willing, I’d like to briefly share five highpoints from my notes. Perhaps this information will spark your own next step in personal or professional development? I’m still processing everything that I heard, and would welcome your thoughts and feedback on our Facebook page.

HIGHLIGHT #1: Rules of Respect – It’s time for a refresher course in civility.
Bill Hybels, Founder and Senior Pastor, Willow Creek Community Church

Hybels opened with a reminder that humility is essential for effective leadership. Am I a leader or a troublemaker? Check out Hybel’s Rules of Respect.

HIGHLIGHT #2: Resilience is a muscle. You must build it!
Sheryl Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer, Facebook

Sandberg talked about her grief and healing journey following the death of her beloved husband. “Just as our bodies have a physiological immune system, our brains have a psychological immune system and there are steps you can take to help kick it into gear.” Go here for more information on her recent best-seller, Option B.

HIGHLIGHT #3: Everyone can be creative. Solving today’s challenges depends on your ability to unlock the creative potential in yourself and your team members.
Fredrik Härén, Author and Business Creativity Expert

Härén has authored nine books, including “The Idea Book,” credited as one of “The 100 Best Business Books of All Time.” Why is this book different? See for yourself.

HIGHLIGHT #4: Great leaders know how to use white space, that strategic pause taken between activities.
Juliet Funt, CEO, www.whitespaceatwork.com

Eighty percent of organizations believe their employees are overwhelmed with information and activity. ONLY 8% have programs to address the issue. And when talented people don’t have time to think, business suffers.  Here’s Funt explaining WhiteSpace.

HIGHLIGHT #5: The moment you start criticizing is the moment you stop learning. You stop learning, you stop leading.
Andy Stanley, Author, Communicator, Pastor

“Overcome the natural tendency of resisting what you can’t understand or control.” This is a much-needed word of caution to leaders who believe they are expected to have all the answers. Instead, why not be a leader who learns alongside their team? If you enjoy podcasts, you might try Stanely’s.

I’ve only touched on five of the 13 presenters. For a recap of the entire two days, I invite you to watch the official three-minute recap on YouTube.


“The more that you read, the more things you will know.

The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” – Dr. Seuss