Learning to lead has been a huge process over the years. And I do not think there is ever a time when that learning stops.
In thinking about mistakes that I have made, one of the biggest has been the failure to address conflict quickly. My tendency has been to hope it will go away. The unfortunate thing is that it usually does not. The mistake is not dealing candidly, graciously, respectfully and immediately (Proverbs 17:14, Matthew 5:9, Matthew 18:15, Ephesians 4:15-16, Romans 12:17-19) .
For example, on a particular project with a team of people leading it, I heard a comment made early in the process from one of the team members about another one of the team members. I thought to myself, this is going to be a problem later. Rather than talk to the person about the potential tension, I secretly hoped we could get through the project without any mishaps. That did not happen. A while later, conflict did arise, and it was a mess. If we had dealt with it earlier, we could have saved a lot of hurt. What I have continued to try to do since then is to deal more rapidly with issues when I sense it, rather than waiting and hoping nothing will come of it.
I am grateful for what Christ did for me on the cross so that even in those moments of failure, I am still in right standing before Him and He loves me regardless. I appreciate that out of that love, He also corrects me and teaches me so I can be more like Him as a leader for His glory and for His pleasure (Ephesians 4:31-32, Hebrews 12:10-11).
“Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.” James 1:19-21
“Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no “root of bitterness” springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled.” Hebrews 12:14-15