What are the core things a leader needs to be able to do? In most cases, they simply need to be able to do the things any growing disciple can do: engaging with God, serving, evangelizing, and making disciples. At the core of what’s needed are people who are able to engage culture, help others become followers of Jesus, get them established in their faith, and participate in a community of Jesus followers. This group can then pray for each other, serve together, worship God, and engage in meaningful interaction with scripture that leads to transformation.
These are the core competencies of any believer, regardless of what their more specific contribution will be. The only additional leadership function is the facilitation of a group of these people and then raising up other leaders to do the same things.
So what if the core “curriculum” for leadership development were to start and lead a missional community, then to raise up a couple of other leaders to start and lead missional communities?
That alone would cover almost all of the necessary leadership skills: vision-casting, forming a community, releasing people’s spiritual gifts, developing others. Leaders need to be able to do all of those things regardless of their specific role, and missional communities make an ideal proving ground for learning how.