Dan Reiland The Pastor's Coach – Developing Church Leaders

Can you think of a time that you selected someone for a leadership position, and it didn’t work out well?

Yup. Me too.

Most of us who have served in leadership positions, at least for any length of time, have made a few bad choices, and sometimes it’s a painful learning experience.

It’s just not always easy to know how it will all work out.

Yet, the temptation today is to make quick decisions based on pressure or even a sense of desperation.

Many churches are finding it difficult to find and recruit high-capacity volunteer leaders and even more challenging to find and hire great leaders to join their staff team.

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Progress and healthy growth require the right changes at the right times.

  • What changes are you making?
  • Why are you making those changes?
  • What are the outcomes you desire?

As a leader, if you want to move forward, change is always in play. What is your strategy?

To successfully lead change, a smart strategy is always needed.

Before we get to the 7 main questions…

These first three questions will get you started regardless of the project size; from the overall vision for your church to a departmental goal or team project, it begins here.

Three starter questions for strategic thinking:

  • What is your desired outcome? (vision and direction)
  • What changes are required? (the price you are willing to pay)
  • How will you get there? (the step-by-step plan to follow)

The most challenging element, however, is not the development of the plan; it is sticking with the plan that you created. That’s where so many strategies fall apart.

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My heart aches when I hear a horror story about a church board filled with division, conflict, and competition with the pastor about who leads. But thankfully, more stories are closer to a dream come true than a nightmare.

What makes the difference?

It starts with selecting who’s on your board, but that’s just the beginning. I wrote a brief post a few years back covering an introduction to selecting church elders. I’ll include a couple of abbreviated thoughts from it today, but you can read the full post here.

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Cultivating hope, expressing encouragement, and maintaining an authentically positive spirit are vital to your leadership. People need to sense your optimism as a leader.

But that’s not always easy, is it?

  • Discouragement may run close to the surface for you right now.
  • You may be carrying the weight of a difficult decision.
  • Attempting to anticipate what’s around the corner might be causing anxiety.

Sometimes, the difficult circumstances near us can blind us to the good surrounding us.

And because we devote a significant amount of time to solving problems (a normal part of leadership), it’s easy to forget the blessings.

It’s not unlike a farmer who works so diligently to tend the soil, fend off pests, get rid of weeds, and make sure the crops are watered. Yet, they can lose sight that all that hard work produces life-giving food that nourishes so many people!

What you do really matters!

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