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By Haydn Jensen

An Interview with Ron and Margareth Carrothers, International Directors for LeaderImpact
by Haydn Jensen

How would you share your "God given story" with people? For many, we either say too little (ie. nothing at all) or say way too much.

Sharing our story effectively forms a central part of what LeaderImpact does. The organization works primarily with business leaders and also political and military leaders, helping them to grow in how they live and express their faith in their professional and personal lives. According to Ron and Margareth Carrothers, International Directors for LeaderImpact, business and professional leaders are one of the last unreached people groups. Our highly secular professional world can be a tricky place for us to feel welcome and safe to talk about our spiritual faith. Yet, this is exactly what LeaderImpact encourages. Why? Ron Carrothers shares the goal of LeaderImpact: "Our goal is to impact a leader, change a community, and transform a nation."

How does LeaderImpact teach people to share their faith? Simply this--in three minutes, share three things: what your life was like before becoming a Christian; what made you decide to follow Jesus; and how your life is different now. A simple message, but Ron stresses how vital it is to understand the law of permission. People have to give permission first. v LeaderImpact operates as one of twelve ministries of Power to Change Ministries (formerly known in Canada as Campus Crusade for Christ) and follows a clear process in its work. In meeting with leaders, first they share the vision of LeaderImpact and how it can change the spiritual direction of nations. Once leaders capture this vision, they are engaged, trained and challenged to reach out and network with other leaders in their community or sphere of influence through Forums. Forums are professional gatherings designed to integrate practical business training within a clear and unapologetic faith context. These business conferences are typically dinner events held at a hotel and feature a guest speaker. Leaders are then trained to share their faith story, how to lead someone to Christ and follow up with them through a LeaderImpact Group. These are gatherings of small groups where new Christ-following leaders are discipled together with other marketplace leaders.

One of the most exciting aspects of LeaderImpact is the opportunity for business professionals to take part in Global Exchanges. Described as "a faith adventure", Global Exchanges are an opportunity for marketplace leaders and their spouses to leverage their influence and business expertise to impact international leaders, change communities and transform nations. Working with experienced local translators, leaders present the value proposition Jesus offers through speaker events, presentations in boardrooms, dinner parties and one-on-one coffee conversations.

Ron and Margareth tell me their Global Exchange focus is currently focused on Latin American countries. As a long term goal, LeaderImpact aims to be active in every world city of more than 1,000,000 and every Canadian city of more than 100,000. Internationally they say they are just scratching the surface, but are over halfway there in Canada. With two Global Exchanges happening currently each year, the have a strategic plan expand to twelve exchanges per year by 2018.

When Canadian Christian leaders return from a Global Exchange, Ron and Margareth see an obvious "revved up passion" to share their faith. Thousands have accepted Christ as their Lord through the LeaderImpact ministry. For leaders who participate, their business takes on a whole new perspective. Rather than just focusing on career advancement and making money, the business becomes a catalyst to open doors for personal transformation in people's lives.

Despite the exciting difference LeaderImpact makes in the lives and careers of professional leaders, the ministry is not without challenges. Ron and Margareth say the work is mostly volunteer driven and finding volunteers can be a challenge. Ron and Margareth have roots in London as former business owners. Another Londoner, Luke Cechetto, works together with the Carrothers in the role of Global Exchange Manager. A lot of their work and the LeaderImpact staff across the country involves connecting with business people in London and across Canada to share the mission and vision and invite them to join the movement.

Building trust through strong relationships is crucial, especially in Latino cultures where cultural aspects need to be carefully thought through. LeaderImpact staff have found that in Latin America the hierarchy within the professional world can be precarious. Fear around repercussions socially and financially needs to be respected and negotiated carefully. Ron and Margareth shared a story about people who ran a private school in Mexico and decided to join LeaderImpact. Although they made no other changes in how they did things at their school, word got around and in one year school enrolment dropped by 50%.

Recently, LeaderImpact leaders were discussing with some Latino leaders how to work most effectively in the local ministry. Ron shared the response that he found to be particularly astute: “Just love our people.”

It's almost poetic that in the midst of high-powered information and technology driven business worlds, the simple idea of “just love our people” can shine through as the best approach of all.

Want to find out more or get involved?

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Contact Ron or Margareth: