Lead Develop Care

An M3 Weekly Book Review

Excellence in leadership is a fundamental requirement for a successful enterprise of any kind. It is possibly even more important in a missional enterprise. As leaders who aspire to build enterprises that satisfy the triple bottom line, we need a holistic vision for quality leadership. Lead Develop Care: Shaping a Different Kind of Leader, by Terry Cook provides an important resource to meet that need.

Cook’s objective in Lead Develop Care is to provide what he calls “a model for the everyday practice of leadership.” While the content is certainly applicable to the leadership of an enterprise, and many of the vignettes recounted in the book are from business leadership, the model is a general framework, applicable “for leaders of anything involving people.”

The model presented in Lead Develop Care has been developed through decades of experience and research by Cook and other veterans in international leadership development. It is structured around the three “primary responsibilities” of leadership that make up the book’s title. They are defined as follows:

Lead = Intentionally influencing and enabling people to accomplish a given task

Develop = Intentionally strengthening people’s capacity to grow and contribute

Care = Intentionally watching over and responding to people’s needs and well-being.

Each of these primary responsibilities is described in detail, and fleshed out in the form of eleven “operational aspects.” Throughout the book, Cook weaves in applicable and illustrative stories from his experience coaching and developing leaders.

While one of the operational aspects covers the responsibility of the leader to “Manage” an organization, the operational management of an enterprise is not a significant focus of this book. Leaders looking for a framework with a more expanded discussion of enterprise operations may want to explore some of the many other excellent resources addressing that topic.1

We have found the model presented in Lead Develop Care to be a helpful and comprehensive framework for understanding the components of excellent people leadership, as well as a toolkit to jump-start the practice of those components in the everyday tasks of a leader. We highly recommend it.2

Verse of the Week:

“Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel; prophesy and say to them: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Woe to you shepherds of Israel who only take care of yourselves! Should not shepherds take care of the flock? Ezekiel 34:2 (NIV)

Let’s recommit ourselves this week to the responsibility of caring well for the people God has entrusted us to lead in our enterprises.


Great Leadership: What It Is and What It Takes in a Complex World, by Antony Bell provides just such a framework. Bell also presents this framework in the form of a leadership fable in The Clock Tower: A Story about the Three Critical Elements of Effective Leadership, which we reviewed in a previous M3 Weekly article.


A mention or recommendation of a resource in this e-newsletter does not necessarily constitute a complete endorsement of the content by US Navigators Missional Enterprise. However, we strongly believe that each resource we present contains a significant amount of helpful content in line with our vision and values, and we encourage you to read (or listen) for yourself and glean from it what the Lord has for you.

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