Karen Warner is the Leadership Co-ordinator at the Baptist Support Centre. She has a big-picture oversight of all the leadership areas of the Baptist Union of New Zealand and co-ordinates the various things we have going on as a movement of churches in this space. Here we ask Karen about the new free Robust Leadership Training resource she has created:

What is this training? 

The Robust Leadership Training Course is a ten-module course covering the traits that we believe are vital to effective leadership development that will bring longevity. Whether it’s leadership in the faith-based sector or the secular, we believe these ten traits will help you be the kind of leader that God has called you to be:

  1. A strong focus on Jesus,
  2. Emotional intelligence and self-awareness,
  3. Biblical literacy and discipling others,
  4. Holy Spirit-led leadership,
  5. Thinking and working strategically,
  6. Leading teams and empowering others,
  7. Effecting change and taking risks,
  8. Coping with difference and handling conflict,
  9. Committing to Te Tiriti and understanding Te Ao Māori,
  10. Being Baptist


Why was it developed? 

The last two decades have seen an explosion in conferences, podcasts, blogs, and books aimed at teaching you how to be a great leader. Wading through these can be time-consuming, expensive, and, at times, overwhelming. We wanted to provide our Baptist whānau with leadership material that is: easy to use, accessible no matter where you live, taught by experienced leaders from all walks of life, and grounded in who we are as leaders in Aotearoa, New Zealand. Oh, and did I mention that it’s FREE?!

Who is it for?

The simple answer is that it is for anyone, whether you are currently in leadership or have a desire to one day be in leadership. You may have been a leader for many years, or you might be a teenager wanting to know what great leadership looks like. Whatever phase you are in, we believe there is excellent learning in this course for everyone.

How might we use it?

The beauty of online training is that you can use it anywhere and at any time. The ten modules incorporate 10-minute video teaching and a short reading, with application exercises that help cement the learning. This makes the material usable in a variety of ways. Here are a few to get you started:

  • Individual learning covering one module a month over a year (or less, depending on your time or leadership needs)
  • Peer group learning that covers the same time span 
  • Leadership groups, like Elders, who spend the last half an hour of their regular meetings covering one module at a time
  • A pastor leading a group of young adults through the course over a year (or less, depending on which modules are of most interest)


The beauty of doing the course with others is that you can debrief the application exercises – and even more learning can occur!

For more information and to access this free training, go to the Leadership Hub.

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