I took this class as a modular course in December 2014 with Dr. Paul Magnus. I was actually still registered in both the M.Div and the MABLE degrees during this time. I decided to drop the M.Div, which meant this course didn’t fit in my program anymore, but I’m still glad I took it. It completely changed my outlook on leadership.
Overall, Dr. Magnus was seeking to “resource” us. I came away with a list of dozens and dozens of books that he recommended.
Work Load: not too bad
Before the Mod:
Integrated Reading Report
This is the first time I had been asked to do this. Most other professors just ask you to give a normal reading report. The harder the class, the more “critical” they want you to be. Dr. Magnus had a different philosophy. He said “It’s often thought that being critical is the highest form of thinking, but it is not. Anyone can tear things apart. Putting it back together again is the higher level.” Instead of trying to find ways to disagree with things, try to find ways to integrate it into your current system. We had to read five leadership books before the mod (there was some selection available), and write one report, putting them altogether, comparing them to each other.
I think I started in September or so, giving myself two weeks to read each book and make notes, then a week or so before the class to write the report.
Lead Like Jesus
Three Commitments of Leadership: How Clarity, Stability, and Rhythm Create Great Leaders
The Leadership Challenge
The Leader’s Palette: Seven Primary Colors
Courageous Leadership: Written by Bill Hybels, 2002 Edition, (New Edition) Publisher: Zondervan Carr [Paperback]
During the mod
Each day there were preparation questions in the syllabus that we had to think through to better participate in class.
The class itself blew my mind. I’ll never think of leadership the same way again.
We were broken up into groups, and had to get to know each other during the week. We spent some in-class time together, but had to spend an entire evening talking and interviewing each other. The goals being to become more self-aware of our leadership, and write papers reflecting on our own development and to coach each other in each other’s development.
After the mod
After going home, we had to submit our group work papers, and then research and write a “philosophy of leadership” paper. This wasn’t too bad, and I had everything done by the end of December.
Dr. Magnus reads a book a week. After this class, I felt inspired to start my own reading goals. One of the key concepts I picked up was the idea of “strategic reading”.
I also love the topic of leadership, and have added “Leadership” as one of the strategic categories in my reading goals.