Dan Reiland The Pastor's Coach – Developing Church Leaders

Category / Relationships

Your key relationships either move you forward or pull you backward.

Nothing organic has a neutral mode. If it’s a living organism, it’s either growing or dying. My car is a machine. It has a neutral gear, but it’s not productive. In fact, it’s not really a gear. It’s a place between the gears that just spins until I want to go forward or backward. Neutral is a place holder, but it doesn’t make progress.

The same principle is true in human relationships – there is no holding pattern. They are either moving forward or in decline. A marriage, for example, is either getting better or getting worse. There is no plateau.

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If a leader loses influence, it rarely evaporates instantly.

It’s usually more like a pin-sized hole in a balloon. The leak is so slow it’s barely perceptible. The balloon flies high at first – seemingly tugging on its string. Then it slowly begins to drop. In few days, you wake up and see the balloon laying on the floor, and much smaller than it used to be.

There are rare circumstances, such as a moral failure, that result in the loss of influence overnight. In the vast majority of situations, it’s subtle and slow. Unfortunately, sometimes it’s not noticed until it’s too late.

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Don’t underestimate the significance of whether or not the people you lead like you.

Respect and trust are essential, but without the foundation of a positive relationship, leadership becomes very difficult.

Every time we hire someone at 12Stone Church, I ask the supervisor this question about the candidate they just interviewed, “So, what did you think?” Their first response is always, “Well, I liked her.” Then they go into the details. Or, the initial reaction is: “You know, I didn’t really like him.” It always starts with relationships. Always.

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All leaders have blind spots.

We can’t see what we can’t see.

That’s not an indictment; it’s a reality. It’s part of being human.

I depend on close insiders to advise me, coach me, and tell me the truth. Without that, I’m nearly guaranteed to do most things the hard way. I’ll make and repeat avoidable mistakes, miss opportunities, and possibly – unknowingly hurt relationships. When I make myself accountable to a team, not only am I better, the whole team is better.

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