Thursday, November 20, 2008

Don't Be That Couch- Andy Stanley

  • A couch was purchased to have a place to sit- It becomes an emotional attachment over time that lingers around even when it becomes outdated and irrelevant. We keep it around too long.... how does this apply to your church, business, team.... ?

  • Leadership styles are going to vary, there is no cookie- cutter- don't spend all your time trying to mirror other people's style- press into your own God-given flavor-
  • If we were to start completely over, would we still choose to be doing the things we're currently doing?
  • Church programming is created to meet a specific need-
  • As programming begins as an answer to a question, over time it becomes part of a church's organizational culture- (makes them difficult to change but may not be needed or is no longer effective any more)
  • As culture changes, the methods will need to change but the questions tend to stay the same
  • As leaders we're called to lead people to see things the way we see them- otherwise we'll never be able to get them to do what needs to be done to make a difference-
  • If we institutionalize an answer, the day will come that it will no longer be an an answer
  • "I want to help you think differently"- we need to see the "couch" in our ministry/business differently
  • We need to be more committed to our mission than our programming or model. Programming and models can become old, outdated couches we get emotionally attached to...
  • Over time, sustaining the model becomes the mission... When you fall in love with anything other than the mission- you can quickly lose focus on God's original mission for you
  • The model can begin to work against the mission- as leaders we need to monitor this- when we see this beginning, we need to lead our team/organization back to the mission-
  • What have we fallen in love with that's not as effective as it used to be?
  • Where are we manufacturing energy? Having to pretend or manufacture enthusiasm for something that just isn't that good...
  • If a new person came into our church or organization, what is it that they would scrap and get rid of because they're able to see it for what it really is? No emotional attachment... Do you have the ability to stay objective and pull the plug on things that need to be over?
  • What are our organizational assumptions? Leaders must bring these assumptions in alignment with changes in the external environment. The world changes... our assumptions become wrong over time...
  • Don't try to tweak things that are broken...they'll still be broken.
  • The assumptions a team have held the longest or deeply are likely to be the things that become its undoing- Why churches don't change- What are the things that are "off limits" for debate? Beware....
  • What assumptions are false?
  • :Example: We assume people want to sit in rows and listen to a speaker.
  • Example: We assume Christians love to worship by singing songs they don't know that well.
  • Which assumptions are true but are not being fully leveraged?
  • To reach people no one else is reaching we need to do things no one else is doing...
  • How do you get rid of couches when people aren't on board yet? You need to lead them through the process, may take time.
  • Fresh eyes are needed at times to come in and point out the couches in our life, ministry, or organization...

Creating Spiritual Momentum- Craig Groeschel

  • How to Develop Personal Spiritual Momentum- Craig Groeschel
    "I will do today what I can do today to enable me to do tomorrow what I can’t do today."

    4 Things You Can Do Today:

Identify my leadership dark side and do something to combat it today

  • Too competitive, prideful, hesitant?
  • Fear of lack- not having enough- Then give more.
  • Nervous about a neighboring church: Drop off an offering
  • Nervous/insecure? Ask 3 people to speak bluntly into your life
  • God’s key blessing in your ministry/life may come through your dark side

Create Artificial Deadlines- put limits on time

  • Ex: Video team- can spend 100’s of hours on a project- tell them they have 15 hours
  • Shorter, purposeful days can be more productive
  • Can create white space, think time- spiritual growth

Delegate what someone else can do

  • Don’t delegate responsibilities- delegate authority
  • Responsibilities creates followers, authority creates leaders
  • If you don’t delegate authority, you won’t attract great leaders
  • High control- low growth Low control- high growth
  • A little bit of chaos is worth it

Do something only You Can Do

  • You’re the only one who can:
  • Care for yourself
  • Recharging activities
  • Take time off
  • Spending time with God
  • Eating right and exercising
  • Honoring God in private ways
  • Be a husband to your wife or a Dad/Mom to your kids
  • Pride leads to thinking I’m the only one who can do something
  • Poor leadership leads to inability to delegate and build new leaders around me
  • Balance is not realistic- but plan recovery time on the backside of a stressful period

    “Most people want what others have but aren’t will to do what others did.”

Busting Barriers with Mindset Changes: Craig Groeschel

Busting Barriers with Mindset Changes: Craig Groeschel

  • Similar to when you have kids- your mindset changes
    5 Mindset Changes:
    · Think Differently About Our Church/Organization Culture
  • Complaint: “Our People won’t _______ “
  • SOLUTION: We have not led them to ________ . We have not led them to the desired results.
  • Pray, God make me _______- whatever the leadership quality needed to break out of the stuck culture…. Lead by example.
  • Think Differently About Programming
  • Evaluate “true” effectiveness- what is actually creating spiritual growth?
  • What is actually creating profit and positive customer experiences?
  • Do less, do what you can be the best in the world- Reach more by doing less.
    · Think Differently About Your Mission
  • Are we about our mission or guarding people’s feelings?
  • We can’t allow someone to hold back the mission of the church.
  • On our staff- who is it that is a blockade to the mission?
    · Think Differently About People Leaving the Church
  • We can grow when people leave
  • We can make it difficult for the wrong people to leave
  • Allows the gripers and grumblers to leave
  • Churches need to be confident in who they are like a dating relationship- that culture is attractive
    · Think Differently About Limitations
  • Many times your greatest blessing is going to come from your greatest limitation
  • Great leaders see opportunities while others see limitations

  • Find someone a few steps ahead of me and find out how they “think”- How do they think/process? Value understanding how one thinks over how they “do” something
  • Identify one painful decision that you’ve been avoiding and commit to making the right decision no matter what the short-term effect may be
  • Lead by example. Am I modeling what I want my team to be doing?

Gaining & Sustaining Momentum- Andy Stanley

  • Gaining and Sustaining Momentum

  • If you have momentum, you need to identify why you have it- otherwise you’re one stupid decision away from losing it
  • Businesses that lose momentum immediately have meetings, planning to try to get it back, churches will allow years to go by to not identify it as long as they’re paying the bills
  • Churches with momentum need to consider that there are particular systems and decisions that are creating it- "I don't know, God is just blessing us" is an incomplete analysis.
    · New, Improved, Improving- 3 Elements of Sustaining Momentum
  • “New” triggers momentum
  • Momentum can be positive OR negative
  • Negative event/negative momentum .. think 9-11
  • Negative event/positive momentum ....People give, heroes appear
  • Negative circumstances are the great soil for positive momentum- Negative economy…=
  • Positive event/positive momentum- New sports stadium
  • Funny: When a pastor leaves it can create negative or positive momentum
    · Organizational Triggers to momentum: New leadership, direction, or product
    · If an organization lacks momentum, ask:"do we need new leader, direction, or product?" Churches tend to go right to new leader….
  • Momentum is never triggered created by tweaking something old, it’s about launching something new-
  • NEW must be a NOTICEABLE improvement- New AND improved- You can’t just name something different to create momentum
  • Is this a significant improvement over what we did before? SIGNIFICANT- ask the questions… If it’s not SIGNIFICANT…. Don’t do it.
  • You would rather have 2 things with momentum over 10 without momentum… Gets back to what we can do really really well….
  • Even significant improvement has a shelf-life… Never feels new & improved forever
  • Momentum is sustained by continuous improvement… THINK New products… “New and Improved” I stick with a brand when I believe they’re going to be continuously improving…they’re on the cutting edge always improving their product…
  • Continuous improvement requires systematic, regular evaluation
    · Work to continuously improve not because you got complaints… it’s so you never get complaints…
    · Unfiltered evaluation- Nobody and nothing off-limits for potential improvement
    · Let’s make Sunday better on Sunday! After first service filtering…
    · New personel, programming, season, series, look, venues
    · Look for ways to upgrade presentations
    · Attend other organizations

  • Disengaged leader
  • Overactive management
  • Managers want to take chaos into predictability
  • Leaders break all the rules
  • Don’t put managers in leadership, don’t put leaders in management (types)
  • Momentum requires margin and un-predictability- managers can’t be allowed to kill momentum by working to keep things predictable-
  • Complacency
  • Complexity- (one reason why there’s success in church start-ups…) Older organizations add complexity that sometimes needs to be stripped away-
  • Breach of trust- moral failure
    Q & A:
  • The "creators" of what is being evaluated need to be in the evaluation and guided through the "why" of the changes being made or programs being cut
  • Life-cycle of programs/seasons- the younger the audience the shorter the cycles, high school, singles, etc Ask How long can we run it before we need to shut it down?
  • We gave God credit for everything, anything bad was always the devil- we were left with no principles to find what God was blessing
  • We pray for wisdom- God works through people, Noah still had to build the ark, the disciples still had to go out and preach
  • Much more resources are needed to get initial momentum than sustaining (flywheel concept)
  • Complexity: When there’s a great idea you can’t do because of “us”- then your/our organization is looking complex-
  • Systems create behaviors…. What system is required to yield the desired behavior?

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Missing Piece: Finish

5K races don't mean much if you only run 3 miles. A 14 foot free throw doesn't score any points. In the work place, those who can be finishers stand out from the crowd and people take notice. The halls and cubicles where you work are full of people that get projects and tasks 80-90% complete. You want to stand out and be a performer? Finish.

3 Ways to be a Finisher:

  • Look for an opportunity to take an initiative that has been stalling out or hanging incomplete at work. Take it, and in your mind make yourself 100% responsible. Do what it takes to get it done and done well. Want to be normal? Be cynical and roll your eyes at how the project is just another company objective that will never get done...
  • In meetings and conversations, be the best note taker- pay attention and get the details of what needs to be done whether it's your responsibility or not. Help remind people of the tasks to do, priorities at hand, and assist people by reminding then what needs to get done. Normal is people on your team missing details leaving projects incomplete, clients unhappy, and money uncollected. Fill in the cracks for your team so your team finishes strong.
  • Be willing to make a decision. Everyday there are scores of emails and conversations filled with questions, hurdles, and excuses. Bring clarity and be solution oriented... take those things that are spinning and bring them to a finish line. What's normal? Add to the confusion, be vague, ask questions that seem really smart but just keep things undone, offer more reasons why something can't be done and how you don't have enough information. Hide in the multitudes of 80%.

There are incomplete puzzles all around your work, embedded in your emails, and with your clients. What will you do?

Being a finisher comes with a price. You're going against the grain and at times it exposes "the normal" in others. People on your team will get defensive and will even go behind your back. Stay the course. Just keep doing.

At the end of the day, if you're truly "for" your team and focused on the mountain your team is trying to climb- you'll find purpose and growth in your work and in your life.