by Bob Whitesel DMin PhD, Church Revitalizer Magazine, Aug. 1, 2018.
Equipper vs. Being an Expert
As ministry impact increases, people often start to look to the leader as “the expert.” This can be exacerbated when a church is struggling and looking for any help. The result is that the congregation and the leader may put too much of the burden upon the leader.
As a result, turnaround leaders tend to undertake the most important things themselves. They tend to do most of the preaching themselves, they tend to do most of the organization themselves, they tend to run the meetings themselves, they tend to do most of the evangelism themselves, etc. etc. An all too common result is a burned-out pastor and a church that feels even less likely to turn around.
Solution: As pastor your job is to equip the believers for the work of ministry (Ephesians 4:12-16). When turning around client churches I have found it most helpful to get people’s eyes off of the pastor as expert, and start seeing the pastor as their trainer and equipper. An important personal discipline for the turnaround pastor is to train and delegate to others important tasks rather than trying to do it all oneself. This means seeing the potential in people and even giving them the chance to flounder at times. It means having less perfection in our churches and more opportunity for participation.
QUOTE: It means having less perfection in our churches and more opportunity for participation.
Read more at … https://churchhealthwiki.wordpress.com/2018/09/25/spiritual-formation-helpful-vs-hurting-disciplines-how-to-thrive-in-ministry-by-choosing-the-best-spiritual-practices/
by Bob Whitesel D.Min., Ph.D. and the 2017 Missional Coaches Cohort, 2/1/17.
- Create an organizational chart that includes each area of ministry.
- Pastor, Director(s), Volunteer Leader roles, etc.
- Identify and write down the positional names first, then add actual names of people. If you have not yet identified the desired positions or people, then begin to pray for clarity on roles and potential leaders for those roles. Pray for your current leaders.
- Create (and have ready in writing) expectations and core values for the individual roles to have leaders lead. This brings value to the leader.
- You become a better leader the more you can share the responsibilities of the your particular areas of ministry. You also raise the “leadership lid” as you are able to do what you can to empower/coach others to lead.
- Take an intentional DAWG (Day Alone With God)
- So something that fills your tank, gets you alone with God in his presence. (Go to a park, a hike, bike ride, to a lake, to the pool, etc) You get the point, do what you enjoy.
- Take a day monthly. Journal, read a book/Bible, pray, Listen, etc
- Begin to meet with 6-10 potential leaders regularly to move from expert to an
equipper. (Dan Reiland’s 5 Elements to Empower Your Leaders summarized below.)
- 1 time per month for about 1.5hrs for up to 1 year. Be intentional to talk about
vision, core values, and maybe do a book study, and/or leadership lifter/training.
Then recruit a whole new group of potential leaders and repeat the process.
During this process there are 5 key areas to help equip and empower other
- “Trust with responsibility”
- Like a teenager learning to drive, handing over the keys to a new leader is
a risk. But without risk, a leader can’t feel the weight of their responsibility
and your trust.
- Mistakes are likely, but growth occurs in that process!
- “Train your leaders for competency”
- “In the same way you would not let your teens drive the family car without driver’s education, your leaders need training too. Even the best and brightest of your leaders need training in order to become better leaders.
- The training needs to be consistent, relevant, and practical. It must also embrace the cultural values of your church.
- Global Leadership Summit, Exponential, or other Conferences if budget permits, Web-based video (such as TedTalks or Right Now Media) or leadership podcasts if budget is tight.
- After you finish a training, plan a specific time to debrief and evaluate the their experience, what they learned, or how they were challenged. Find specific ways to apply their experiences.
- “Give them authority”
- Give authority (decision-making, teaching, financial responsibility, etc) equal to the responsibility.
- Encourage an atmosphere of boldness by encouraging risks (and
therefore mistakes). Progress is prioritized over perfection.
- Sharing authority opens the way for others to lead.
- “Communicate Clear Expectations”
- Leaders need guidelines and clear expectations. Job descriptions, goals
and cultural values of the church make it possible for them to be
successful. When a leader does not know what is expected, they can’t
- While uncommon, on rare occasion it is necessary to remove
empowerment. Perhaps the leader refuses to operate within the
guidelines, and values or cannot keep up with the needed competencies.
This conversation always goes easier when clear expectations were
previously set. It’s always a tough decision to remove empowerment, but on rare occasion it needs to be done.
- “Love and believe in each one for maximum potential”
- “When Jesus shared His authority with the disciples, it wasn’t a
mechanical or hierarchical thing. He mentored them, invested time with them, and loved them. He saw through the mess and believed the best. Jesus had faith in the twelve, even though their faith often faltered. Jesus believed in them before they fully believed in themselves.”
- We have the privilege and responsibility to “see” potential leadership in those we lead, and often before they see it in themselves.
© Bob Whitesel DMin PhD & MissionalCoaches.com #PowellChurch