Thursday, May 19, 2011

Have You Written Your Passionography?

I've been asked about my passionography assignment and if I would share it.  The passionography is the result of self-examination and surveys of others about yourself.  The following are what served as inputs to ponder while compiling a passionography:
  • Understanding of your personal strengths
  • Your personal skills
  • What is important to you
  • Strongly held beliefs that are aspects of your personal faith/values
  • Survey of what others think that you feel is of importance
  • Survey of others of how they view you as a leader

With all of that input, you then begin to formulate your own personal passionography with respect to your leadership outlook.  As you will notice, the first paragraph is what I used as input into my leadership manifesto.  This is a very personal document and serves as a compass to revisit in order to reset my direction.  

Think of the passionography as saying, "This is who and why I am"  The leadership manifesto says, "This is where I'm going and how I'm going to go about it"  The two together are like a map and a compass - they work together to guide you on your journey.

If you have any questions or thoughts, feel free to comment or shoot me an email at

My Passionography

 Importance of Leadership

 Everyone is a leader in some way, but not everyone accepts the responsibility of leadership.  Leaders influence and inspire – in both negative and positive ways.  When we accept the responsibility to be influential and inspirational to others, it is then that we are stepping out of our comfort zone of complacency and self-absorbed egos to put our focus on others.  How can one possibly think they can influence someone else without first understanding those they desire to influence?

 Personal Impact of Leadership

 I have been blessed by having influential leaders in my life.  Mrs. Cain, my high school chemistry teacher that told me that I was good at a lot of things, but she’d love to see me narrow the focus to be great at a few things.  Tony Gossett, my first mentor, made me memorize chapters 6-8 of the book of Romans, to understand human struggle and the opportunity to have quality in life through a real and growing relationship with God.  John Yancey, my second mentor, challenged me to write out every verse in the book of Proverbs that was related to the use of our lips, tongue, mouth, or spoken word teaching me to power of life, death, success and failure that our words can have on ourselves and others. Michael Woolstrum, my current mentor (at various times in the past 12 years) has taught me the value of selfless living, high work ethic, and focus on others.
The life and legacy that I see in these people has influenced and inspired me to want to grow in personal and spiritual maturity.  I could only hope that my life can influence and inspire at least one person as much as they’ve done for me.

 Personal Leadership

 I love God and love people, but understand that many do not feel that same way.  I’ve met many people who “don’t know and don’t care” about God, but seem to have a love and care for humanity.  Meanwhile, I know others who love God, but somehow miss the mark when dealing or caring for people.  I am not implying that my love for God and people is perfect, but I’d like to think that I am intentional and authentic when relating to another person.
I want “to leave the world a better place”.  I want to achieve great things and help others do the same or surpass those achievements.  I want people to have a choice to know my God in a real and personal way.  I want to help people discover what makes them “come alive” and find ways to incorporate that into their life’s journey.
What does this have to do with leadership?  Everything.
Jim Elliot, a missionary killed in Ecuador while trying to evangelize the Waodani Indians, said “Let me not be a milepost on a single road; make me a fork, that men must turn one way or another on facing Christ in me.”  (Shadow of the Almighty, by Elisabeth Elliot)  For some, this quote takes on the meaning of bold, in-your-face Bible thumping evangelism.  For me, the quote takes on a different meaning when paired with this quote often attributed to Theodore Roosevelt: “Nobody cares how much you know until they know how much you care”.
I do not want to simply be a road sign declaring how many miles one has traveled or how much farther they have to go.  I want to be a tour guide for many on this journey called life, providing maps of navigation through the tough terrain of disappointment and grief and celebrating on the summits of the mountains of blessing and peace.
There is nothing more rewarding to me, than to see the miraculous change in a person’s eyes when they’ve encountered God in a real and personal way.  My hope is that intentional servant leadership and success will open the doors that will permit me to introduce others to my creator and the ultimate servant leader, Jesus Christ.

What are you passionate about? Please share.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing John. Great passionogrpahy. I wrote mine, but feel like I could add some "umph" to it after reading through yours. :)