Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Habits of Rookie Communication Teams

I would not know if the following habits are for successful or rookie communication teams. Nevertheless, these are some of the habits that I see marking our new communications team:

Habit #1: Communication. Everyone needs to be on the same page and thus the ongoing need for leadership not only creativity.

Habit #2: Preparation. Create a "preflight checklist" for each job that should be performed.

Habit #3: Concentration. Distraction is the mother of all time killers.

Habit #4: Synchronization. Teamwork in this case means that each job has different people accomplishing different tasks. For our team, we have a copy writer, graphic designer, and a group of proof readers. BTW, these are extra jobs people have added to their portfolios.

Habit #5: Anticipation. Stay a step ahead. I try to anticipate peoples objections, problems, and exceptions.

Habit #6: Evaluation. It is important for the team members to "huddle" often. I like right after something is completed because it is fresh.

Monday, September 22, 2008

5 Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni

I have been reviewing my leadership file and wanted to add this reminder to the conversation of team development. it has been a while since I reviewed this timeless work by Patrick Lencioni.

Core Thought:
Teams that lack trust are incapable of engaging in unfiltered and
passionate debate of ideas. Instead resorting to veiled discussion and
guarded comments.

5 Functions of a Successful Team

1. They trust one another
2. They engage in unfiltered conflict around ideas.*
3. They commit to discussions and plans of action.
4. They hold one another accountable for delivering against those plans.
5. They focus on the achievement of collecting results.

(* Acknowledge/understand conflict is NOT bad)

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Sy Rogers Conference

I am grateful for a church community like Central being willing host the Sy Rogers conference this weekend. When we started Saturday, there were about 20 pro-gay protesters in front of Central. Both Jim and Sy talked with them to express that they were not our enemies. The protesters were just kindly wanting to express their pro-gay stances during our conference although it was not technically a "protest."

Here are some take aways from the Saturday seminar:
* Change (transformation) is the inevitable byproduct of growth. If you need to change then you need to grow.
* The biggest obstacle to redeeming the sexual generation is not protesters it is the pulpit.
* We have been more interested in winning an argument than winning our neighbor.
* Turn your pain into productivity
* People will make time for what feeds them. The greatest need for our culture is not information or knowledge or another sermon per se. The Bible is freely accessible today. The great need for our culture is relational.

Multi-Generational Church Revitalization

Todd Hudnall, senior pastor at Radiant Church, is doing doctoral research on revitalized multi-generational churches. Through an exchange of emails, here are some of the points I spoke with Todd about that are important to Central.

1. Mission - Mission brings the generations together and keeps the focus on the goal. We keep the vision for mission at the center of everything initiative we have done including building, staff changes, service expansions, repainting the foyer, etc.

2. The Bus - It is always central for us to get the right people doing the right things (ala Jim Collins). The right people in the right places doing the right things take care of 90% of problems.

3. Options - Giving our people options helps cover the wide range of needs in our congregation. We just launched 70+ smallgroups/ministry teams in our last Celebration Sunday, where we present new group startups.

4. Serve - Serving speaks everyones language. Music has changed over the past 50 years but the way you love your neighbor is basically the same. We are constantly pushing things from the platform that encourage serving opportunities.

5. Spiritual Leadership - Jim Bradford is a brilliant man but intellect is not what keeps us on track. The greatest leadership Jim gives is challenging us to love, pray, and selflessly serve God's people.

6. Blended Worship - When it comes to music, this seems to be an area that divides more than it unites. Tom Matrone emphasizes the right elements of music. He emphasizes content over style while allowing the style to create affinity with different segments of the congregation.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Anchor Points for Success in Ministry

I hesitate presuming to know anything about success in ministry. Success seems to change for me the more experience I have in ministry. Because we often confuse success with the recognition of success, there needs to be some anchor points for us as we navigate through life.

1. Know your Purpose
As Mark Batterson says, "Play offense with your life." Write down goals in detail. Short term and long terms goals need to be explored in our hearts and minds.

2. Growing to your Maximum Potential
Are you applying yourself or just coasting intellectually, spiritually, relationally, etc?

3. Using influence to benefit others
Ouch! I am working on this one. I wholeheartedly believe a selfless servant-leader is the instrument in God's kingdom.

2 Thessalonians 3:9 MSG
And it wasn't because we didn't have a right to your support; we did. We simply wanted to provide an example of diligence, hoping it would prove contagious.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Interview with Paul Young

Yesterday, I had the privilege of sitting in on a personal interview with Paul Young (aka William P. Young), the author of the best selling story called The Shack. The Shack has sold 3.8 million copies. Aside from a great interview from an incredibly humble person, I got to hold his cell phone.

Although there have been some theological controversy surrounding the book, I believe Paul has written a great book which has generated substantial conversations among Christians and non-Christians.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

The Renewed Mind is the Key to Christ in Me!

I need a renewed mind after watching this video. I really try hard to have an open mind about different ways to communicate the truth of God. This video challenges my box and paradigm for ministry.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Planetshakers Apology from Mike "Healer"

Holy Cow posted a very good blog that helped me out after the moral failure from Michael Guglielmucci from Planetshakers . My wife and I absolutely loved the song "Healer" and felt violated when we heard the news of the lie he produced. I refused to listen to the song for several weeks and then relaized that God uses broken people all the time (for sure me). The truth and faith of the song is in Christ not in Michael Guglielmucci.

Check out the video apology and article here.