What Most Leaders Miss When They Implement A New Idea

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by Ryan Stigile

Great church leaders are always implementing new ideas to further develop their ministry. Unfortunately, many fail to see fully what those ideas will require of themselves or their team. It is not uncommon for leaders to seek new “products” while resisting the underlying processes required to create them. For example…

  • Many pastors want better creative elements in their sermons but they’re not willing to write their sermons several weeks in advance.
  • Many pastors want more people in small groups but they’re not willing to give up stage time to promote the program.
  • Many pastors want their team members to try something new but they’re not willing to cut the old programs that take up their time.

Every product you desire has a process it requires. When leaders seek new products without adopting new processes, they only create frustration and disappointment for everyone. The only way to avoid this is to change the process to create a new product. Whenever you take a new idea to your team, immediately follow up with these three process-creating questions:

1. What will this require of you? The cost of a new idea is rarely seen at first. The only way to find out what a change will require is to ask the people directly involved in making it. By asking this question, you give your team the opportunity to share how implementing your idea will truly affect them. You might be surprised by what you’re really asking of your team.

2. What will this require of me? Expecting your team to change without changing yourself is a surefire way to lose influence with your team. Unless you’re willing to make adjustments yourself, you will quickly become the biggest barrier to new ideas. By asking this question, you give your team the opportunity to share how you can serve them in this new reality. You might be surprised by what your team really needs from you.

3. How can we make this systematic? Now that you know what is required of everyone, you can begin building the process you need to succeed. If you’re not intentional about creating a new process, everyone will be sure to slip back into old habits. By clarifying the steps and deadlines that repeat over time, you’ll create the organizational habits you all need to adopt a new practice. When you ask this question, you create an opportunity for you and your team to map out the process together. You might be surprised by what you ask of each other.

Implementing new ideas always comes with its challenges. This becomes even more difficult when leaders see a desired product without taking time to understand the required process. By asking these three questions, you can enable your team to show you what your new desire will require. As everyone begins to see the bigger picture, you’ll take much greater steps to advance your ministry.

Photo Credit: Dinohyus via Compfight cc

Tony Morgan

Tony is the Founder and Lead Strategist of The Unstuck Group. Started in 2009, The Unstuck Group has served 500 churches throughout the United States and several countries around the world. Previously, Tony served on the senior leadership teams of three rapidly growing churches including NewSpring Church in South Carolina. He has five published books including, The Unstuck Church, and, with Amy Anderson, he hosts The Unstuck Church Podcast which has thousands of listeners each month.

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