Being Strategic

The last couple of weeks I’ve walked through a blog series called “A Guest Experience.” If you followed along at all you discovered that I was using a unique strategic process to solve a problem in the context of the church environment. I’ve said many times to my colleagues and friends that I wish I had this book available to me many years ago.

That said, I’d like to give credit where it is rightfully due.

Erika Andersen is a business thinker and the author of the book “Being Strategic“. Nearly all of the ideas and methods I have introduced in my most recent blog series are directly from that book. There is a lot more in the book I haven’t talked about. Being strategic with groups, building a culture of strategic thinking and the art of facilitating meetings are a few.

I highly recommend this book to you. You can pick up a copy right here at Amazon.com.

You may also go to Erika Andersen’s website to learn more about her at erikaandersen.com or visit her blog at Forbes.com.

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Favorite Articles from 2010

Following is the byproduct of some of my reading this fall. I’m an avid reader of some great blogs. You can check out what blogs I frequent and recommend by clicking on “Fav Blogs” above. At any rate, I strongly urge you to bookmark this page and check out some of these great articles when you get the chance. I know you’ll be stretched and challenged! I was!

The Rule of Three: How to Have an Abundance of Volunteers – by Nelson Searcy


What Does it Take to Lead a Turnaround Church – by Dr. Donald E. Ross (guest blogger)


The Power of Syncby Seth Godin


The Small Things Ignoredby Craig Groeschel


Alienating the 2%by Seth Godin

Overcoming Barriers to Church Growth

Several years ago we read a book as a team that really started us on the path of strategic planning at Elim Gospel Church. It was called, “Leadership Transitions for Growth” by Michael Fletcher. The book has now been re-released by the title, “Overcoming Barriers to Church Growth“. It’s a short and easy read, and played a big role in helping us to change our mindset as a leadership team for growth.

Among other things, the book discusses how to build a leadership structure for the NEXT stage of growth you are believing God for in your church/ministry. He said it best on page 43:

“To cross over into a new stage, leaders must understand what lies ahead and make the necessary realignments before they expect to move to a new level of growth.”

He explores three questions for small size churches (under 200), medium size churches (200-700), and large churches (over 800):

  1. How do the Elders relate to ministry?
  2. Who does the ministry?
  3. How are decisions made?
If you have been struggling getting your footing in church growth, I would recommend this book as a resource, especially in the area of how your church leadership is currently structured.

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Lids, Levels, and Leadership

John Maxwell introduced us to the leadership principle, “The Law of the Lid”, in his bestselling book, “The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership“. The Law of the Lid says this:

“Leadership ability is the lid that determines a person’s level of effectiveness. The lower an individual’s ability to lead, the lower the lid on his potential. The higher the individual’s ability to lead, the higher the lid on his potential. To give you an example, if your leadership rates an 8, then your effectiveness can never be greater than a 7. If your leadership is only a 4, then your effectiveness will be no higher than a 3. Your leadership ability – for better or for worse – always determines your effectiveness and the potential impact of your organization.”

As you learn more about this leadership principle, you’ll also discover that you can’t really lead people below you in leadership abilities beyond your own. If you rate a 7 in leadership, you won’t be able to bring those you mentor to an 8.

All of that said, apply this principle to the chart found at this link. This highlights, yet again, how important it is that you understand what level of leadership each of your key volunteers or staff operate in. For instance, you probably don’t want someone leading a lot of volunteers or a ministry if they only operate at a Level 2 “Contributing Team Member”.

This idea has been very helpful to me when working with my key leaders. Often, I will pull out this chart with each of them and we discuss together what leadership level we feel they operate in, what level we believe they should aspire towards (including possibly staying at their current level), and what challenges we face as a result of them being in that level, in comparison to their current responsibilities.


Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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