No Leader Escapes This Simple Fact
A few weeks back, I heard from a senior leader at church we’ve been guiding through the Unstuck Process. Trey is strategically-minded. He could facilitate the development of vision and strategy at his church, but he recognized the unique challenge of sitting in his seat.
It’s a simple fact:
It’s hard to both facilitate and participate in the process at the same time.
I know this first-hand. That’s why I have paid outside facilitators to help us here at The Unstuck Group develop vision and strategy, even though helping other people do those things is my job.
Here’s how Trey summed up the value he got from the experience:
“These conversations are the ones that I feel the most free to share in. Mainly, because I’m not driving the meeting, or facilitating the conversation, or even refereeing the combatants. I’m able to speak freely and then hear your guidance, correction, or affirmation. Fully engaging is really fun.
These moments are HUGE for my leadership learning, too. So much happens in our short time together that isn’t even in the job scope. And the value that we receive FAR exceeds the dollar amount we pay.”
He reminded me of two things I’ve personally experienced when we’ve engaged an outside facilitator to help us with vision and strategy:
1. I’m able to fully engage.
When I’m not responsible for keeping the meeting on schedule, facilitating the conversation, or making sure everyone is engaged, I can be a more meaningful contributor to the process.
2. I am more able to focus my head and heart to hear from God.
When I’m not responsible for all of the talking, I can more easily listen as God speaks to me.
If you’ve ever tried to help your team get clear on the health of your church, clarify vision for the future and then process all of the people and structure things that need to change as a result… you understand how challenging it can be to feel like you’re responsible for making it all come together.
Later this week, I’m helping a church of well over 10,000 people facilitate the development of their ministry strategy and action plan for the coming months. Is it because they don’t have the leaders on this team who can effectively facilitate this conversation? Absolutely not. The reason I’m involved is because it will free the leaders to fully engage in the process without having the burden of also leading the process.
I love getting feedback like we got from Trey. It’s why I do what I do. Our team has now helped nearly 400 pastors by facilitating a process and letting them engage as leader.