SERVANT LEADERSHIP & Sinek’s concept of the “circle of safety” for employees from his book and TED Talk “Leaders Eat Last.”

Introduction by Michael Schwantes, Inc. Magazine, 7/12/17; In Sinek’s Leaders Eat Last, he talks about the concept of the “circle of safety.” The world is filled with danger, things that are trying to frustrate our lives, reduce our success, or reduce our opportunity for success. The only variables, says Sinek in this TED Talk, are the conditions inside the organization, and that’s where leadership matters, because it’s the leader who sets the tone to make sure there’s trust and cooperation, and that employees’ needs are being met.

 

 

NEED-MEETING & How The MIX ministry is meeting Maslow’s Safety Needs for an urban community

Commentary by Dr Whitesel: Abraham Maslow said one of the most critical, yet overlooked, tasks is meeting “safety needs:” the need people have for a safe and secure environment. Read this article to see how one church, in a dangerous neighborhood, weekly opens its doors for a potluck and free courses to provide a safe and popular environment for local residents. Thanks to Great Commission Research Network president James Cho for passing this along.

After 2014 tragedy, why the MIX in Santa Ana is thriving as a free source of classes, meals and love

by Theresa Walker, The Orange County Register, 12/28/16.

It’s a Wednesday night at Newsong Church in Santa Ana, and the gathering known as The MIX is in full swing…

Pop into different rooms on the church’s 17th Street campus, and classes for children and adults are underway, including art, baking, martial arts, crochet, piano and guitar, robotics, and PiYo, a mix of Pilates and yoga.

There are classes in English as a second language for adults and homework help for students.

The MIX is meant to create a safe place for families that live in overcrowded and risky neighborhoods, where it’s unsafe to go out at night. It gives them a place to relax, let the children run around in the open air, connect with one another and improve their lives.

It’s all free, with classes taught by volunteers who include church congregants and members of the wider community. They range from white-collar professionals to someone like Hilda Colin, a mom who heard about The MIX from neighbors.

The meals are typically potluck…

The MIX, formally called The MIX Academy, is Lo’s ministry, and he sums up its purpose in one word: Love.

There’s no preaching, but Lo views what happens at The MIX in spiritual terms.

People might come at first for the free food but find other nourishment when they break bread together and share their stories, their dreams and their talents, he said.

“To me, that’s community transformation, when you can equip the community to teach the community,” Lo said, adding that most of the people who attend The MIX are from impoverished and underserved areas, such as the Willard Intermediate School neighborhood around the corner from the church.

He hopes to train others to start their own version of The MIX at a second location in the city, if a place becomes available.

Lo talks about children who spend so much of their lives indoors – most of the day in a classroom at school and then all evening cooped up inside at home – an overcrowded apartment or maybe just one room in a house, because their parents fear what might happen to them on the streets. Or there is no place for them to play outside. Or there is no money to pay for after-school activities…

On routine nights, the free meal is served from 6 to 7 p.m. Then two hour-long sessions of classes take place, one starting at 7 p.m. and the other at 8 p.m. The classes are listed on a big screen inside the dining hall.

The MIX is supported by a host of donors, local and national, that include Wells Fargo, Nike, Adobe software, Trader Joe’s, Dave & Busters, Obey Clothing and Bracken’s Kitchen…

Read more at … http://www.ocregister.com/2016/12/28/after-2014-tragedy-why-the-mix-in-santa-ana-is-thriving-as-a-free-source-of-classes-meals-and-love/

REFUGEES & How local churches can minister to refugees

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel:  Today 19 Doctor of Ministry students visited the flourishing ministry (and community gardens) of Friends of Refugees.  Watch this video to discover how local churches can begin to reach this burgeoning refugee population.

 

NEED MEETING & What Americans say it takes to be middle class #PewResearch

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: I’ve pointed out that churches are better at meeting what Abraham Maslow calls basic “physiological needs” than we are at meeting the next level of “security (or safety) needs.” Security needs are needs to feel a sense of security and safety in your life, e.g. by regular employment, general peace with your health, a safe living environment, etc. Pew research points out that these are attributes that also characterize a middle class life. It is time for the church to realize that she must stop overlooking safety needs and also direct her ministries towards meeting important “security” needs.

There’s nothing wrong with meeting physiological needs, such as help with food, housing, clothes and etc.

But the church just as robustly must address the next level: “security needs” which include helping people obtain secure employment, a safe family life, a decent place to live and a generally healthy life. Unless we meet this next highest need on Maslow’s pyramid, people won’t be interested in the next level need (just a little bit higher) to belong to a community and enjoy it’s fellowship.

Read this Pew Research which underlines the principles of security needs. And for more ideas regarding how churches can meet safety needs, see The list in “Cure for the common church: God’s plan to restore church health.”

What Americans say it takes to be middle class by ANNA BROWN, Pew Research, 2/8/16.

Secure job, ability to save seen as top requirements to be middle classWhat does it take to be considered part of the middle class these days? The vast majority of American adults agree that a secure job and the ability to save money for the future are essential. The public is more evenly split when it comes to owning a home and having the time and money to travel for vacation. But one thing is now less likely to be seen as a requirement: a college education.

While the economic gap between college graduates and those with a high school education or less has never been greater, the share of adults saying a college education is necessary to be middle class has actually fallen since 2012, from 37% to 30%, according to a Pew Research Center surveyconducted Dec. 8-13, 2015.

There is a wide gap between men and women on this measure. About a third of women (35%) say that a college education is needed to be in the middle class, but only 26% of men say the same. Millennial women outpace Millennial men in educational attainment, and indeed the gap in opinion is wider between women and men who are ages 18 to 49 than among those ages 50 and older.

Read more at … http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/02/04/what-americans-say-it-takes-to-be-middle-class/

PLANNING & How to Create Plans Built Upon an Organization’s SWOT Analysis

by Bob Whitesel D.Min., Ph.D., 9/9/15.

In several other postings, I have explained how a simple SWOT analysis can help ministry leaders make better planning decisions.

And, the best tactics are those that build on an organization’s Strengths and Opportunities, called SO-strategies.  

To show how the same SO (Strength Opportunity) strategy can have different tactics, I will share a dialogue between myself and two former students.  This should help clarify how you get tactics (i.e. planning processes) from the SO quadrant (i.e. cell) of the TOWS matrix (which is a grid made from your SWOT analysis).

It began when a student noted that for his church an “Opportunity” was that there were many “working poor” in the church’s neighborhood.  And he also noted the church had a “Strength” for teaching and education.  So, the student suggested an  SO (Strength/Opportunity) strategy in their TOWS matrix which built on the church’s strength and an opportunity would be: “Offer Financial Stewardship Classes with childcare and a meal provided.”

My question in response was the following:

Hello (student name).  I wonder how other churches have addressed the working poor. I’ve heard some anecdotal feedback that financial stewardship classes don’t reach the working poor, but the middle-class. 

Thus, can you do a bit more online sleuthing (and other students can chime in and help you as well – they will then receive more points too) and tell us some more programming to help the working poor?

 Thanks in advance.  Your research can make your church (and other students’ churches) more effective. Dr. Whitesel

Here is how another student in the cohort proficiently responded. I’m sharing it here to help everyone see how there can be different tactics (financial stewardship classes or long-term solidarity with the poor) for the same SO strategy: help the working poor.

—–

Author: Jack (last name)
Date: Tuesday, February 7, 2012 8:14:13 PM EST
 Subject: RE: SWOT & TOWS

Dr. Whitesel’s statement, “I wonder how other churches have addressed the working poor. I’ve heard some anecdotal feedback that financial stewardship classes don’t reach the working poor, but the middle-class planning poor,” is very true.

Here’s more anecdotal feedback for you Adam, but it’s based on eight years of experience working with low-income families through a local non-profit social service ministry and the United Way. The most critical thing to recognize is that programs for addressing financial stewardship with low-income families do not work unless they take into account cultural differences between generational low-income people and situational low-income people. This is where the distinction in Dr. Whitsel’s comment between the “working poor” and “middle-class planning poor” is so important. If we assume that the “working poor” have been low-income for generations and the “middle-class planning poor” are low-income only due to a job loss, demotion or other circumstance, then how you reach them is very different.

Ruby Payne, Ph.D. has done some tremendous work on the cultural differences between typical low, middle and high income families in her book “Bridges Out of Poverty.” In it she points out factors like how these groups different core values impact their stewardship of money. For example, middle-income people tend to value the Puritan work ethic, gaining more financial security than the previous generation, etc. Wealthier people, who have typically always had money, value things that transcend monetary value (like art, culture, etc.). Low-income people, who often feel like they’ll never have money, value relationships. Thus, when one of their own starts to achieve financial independence or pursue higher education they can hear statements like “you’re getting above your raising.”

Another key difference between middle income and low income values is the tendency for low income people to feel like they’ll never get ahead. Thus, when they get a financial windfall, they are apt to spend it on something fun instead of save it. Saving for the future is a middle income value, not a low income value. These values often stick with a person even if their income status changes later in life. For example, I have a friend who grew up with generationally low income parents. He’s been low income his whole life. A few years ago, he got a $6,000 bonus at work. He spent it all in one weekend on a trip to a Nascar race using the rationale that “I’ll never have another opportunity.” Years later, he is now middle income but still lives paycheck to paycheck and is often facing financial trouble because his attitudes about money prevail. On the other hand, I was poor growing up but my family was situationally poor. Dad grew up in a middle income family and money was tight because he was getting his business going. I learned from him the values of hard work and saving.  So, even though I was poor growing up and when my wife and I were first married, by saving and being disciplined, we have managed to become financially secure. Dr. Payne’s work was based on American society, but I assume it would translate for Canadian society as well.

The main point is this, often well-meaning middle-class people can set out to help the “poor” by offering financial programs erroneously thinking that the “poor” just need more education and opportunity. While it’s true that education and opportunity are necessary bridges out of poverty, it’s wrong to think that if they are offered for free, the working poor will see the fantastic opportunity before them and pursue it.  The “middle class planning poor” probably would, but the “working poor” probably would not. It takes long-term relationships with generational low-income people to help them out of poverty and an understanding of the values they hold dear. You can’t impose your values on them and just say “here’s the plan….work it and you’ll be successful.” I think Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University stuff is good. But, it’s designed for people with a middle-class mindset and value structure. The same principles are lost in translation with most generationally low-income people.

NEED MEETING & How Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Helps Churches Reach Out

by Bob Whitesel Ph.D. (excerpted from Spiritual Waypoints: Helping Others Navigate the Journey (Indianapolis: Wesleyan Publishing House, 2010), “Waypoint 15: Awareness of a Supreme Being,” pp. 41-54. DOWNLOAD the entire chapter HERE (not for public distribution and if you enjoy it, please consider purchasing the book):  BOOK ©Whitesel EXCERPT Spiritual Waypoints 15 Maslow

Signs of Travelers at Waypoint 15

The needs of travelers at Waypoint 15 are best understood through the assessment grid of Abraham Maslow. A psychologist, Maslow was concerned that care-givers often misperceive needs, attempting to address higher needs that are not yet felt by the recipient. He suggested that the recipient may have basic needs that are unmet, and since these basic needs are not yet met the recipient is not interested in the fulfillment of higher needs. When a.

FIGURE ©Whitesel WAYPOINTS Maslow Figure 6 copyFigure 6 is a diagram of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Let us look at each level, working upward from the basic needs at the bottom (click to enlarge).

Unmet physiological needs. These are travelers with needs for the basics of sustainable life, such as food, water, etc.. People who are without work, incapacitated by illness, emotionally or mentally abused, etc. may be consumed by worry about how to meet these basic needs. For example, a need for food to put on their table (or in their mouth) will supersede all higher needs. The person at this stage may not care about housing, joining a faith community, or bettering themselves. They only want to have a sustainable and ongoing source for food, water, etc.. Churches can and should develop ministries for people at this level of need, though this will require extensive effort because these needs are pervasive and long term

Examples of ministries that churches to fulfill physiological needs include:

  • Family emergency services
  • Medical emergency assistance
  • Food and domestic hunger ministries
  • Housing and residential programs
  • Hunger/housing loan and grants programs
  • Disaster relief services
  • Addiction and recovery counseling and support

Unmet safety needs. These are needs for long-term security and a sense that the future is now predictable. Once a person feels they can meet their hunger and thirst needs, they turn their attention to Security Needs, such as a place of their own (i.e. housing), long-term employment, learning a job skill, etc..

Churches that only address short-term physiological needs will not fulfill long-term safety needs. Too often churches offer short-term places to stay, short-term food staples, short-term loans, etc.. These offers will sound hollow and incomplete for travelers at this waypoint, for they are looking for assistance that will ensure long term survival.

Examples of self-sufficiency and sustainable development programs are:

  • Job Training. A homeless person once told me “I am at home on the streets…I’ve learned to survive and that’s the only thing I’m good at.” Helping such people acquire marketable skills is key toward helping them meet long-term needs for safety and security. Examples can include:
    • Job skills evaluation and training
    • Vocational rehabilitation
    • Congregants can hire out of work individuals to give them an opportunity to learn new job skills
    • Community service work at the church can provide references for future employment
    • Scholarships provided by the church call allow for training to improve employability
  • Job Placement. Oftentimes a predictable future begins with dependable employment. Churches that help community residents attain secure and long-term employment will often help them meet long-term safety needs, including:
    • Employment counseling and networking
    • Career research
    • Mentoring for application and resume writing
    • Personal hygiene, clothing and conversational skills to help prepare for job interviews
    • Networking the under- and unemployed with potential employers
    • English as a second language (ESL) assistance
    • Support for GED and equivalency education.
  • Health programs. Insecurity about the future can arise from an illness with an uncertain or vague prognosis. Helping people at this stage means assisting them in finding adequate health care, information about their illness and specialists in their malady. One church was located adjacent to a large hospital. When patients and family visited the church in search of solace, the church prayed for them. While this was an authentic and beneficial act, the patients often left with less inspiration than the parishioners. The church discovered that in addition to prayer, they could offer a patient advocacy ministry. Soon the advocacy ministry had fostered a connection and cooperation with the hospital. The church now not only offered prayer, but also patient help for those suffering from an unpredictable future.

Unmet belongingness and love needs. These needs have to do with acceptance into a community of inter-reliance. At this waypoint, the person realizes that living in a symbiotic relationship with others will enhance their life. A person may join a faith community, volunteer for a ministry and/or seek acceptance. It is at this point that Christians often exhibit their most energetic efforts. There is nothing wrong with this, for travelers at this stage want to belong and be accepted. But, when churches focus only on incorporation they appear manipulative and self-absorbed to people who have been struggling with safety or physiological needs.[ii] Therefore churches must have a robust ministry to meet both physiological and safety needs before they can legitimately offer (and campaign for) assimilation.

At this stage of belongingness and love needs, recipients are also seeking unconditional acceptance and love. But, because they may have an unstable and inconsistent background they may have habits that test Christians’ acceptance. Foul language, addictive habits and ignorance of church traditions will often perturb Christians accustomed to a more genteel church environment. The church must not allow itself to be agitated because people are early in their God-ward journey. Instead, travelers need to feel a different love from the church than they have experienced in the secular realm. To demonstrate this, Christians must offer unselfish love. The Old Testament word for this love, chesed, conveys a “kindness, especially as extended to the lowly, needy and miserable.”[iii]

Other levels of Maslow’s needs will be explored in the appropriate chapters of this book. Thus, the reader may want to bookmark Figure 6 for future reference…FIGURE ©Whitesel WAYPOINTS Maslow 2 levels compared with ideas

  1. (Click to enlarge adjacent figure) Do you have a balance between ministries that meet physiological needs and those that meet safety needs? Use the following chart to measure your balance between physiological needs and safety needs. If they are not balanced, what will you do to ensure that both needs are met and the route of the Good News is unbroken?

DOWNLOAD the entire chapter HERE (not for public distribution and if you enjoy it, please consider purchasing the book):  BOOK ©Whitesel EXCERPT Spiritual Waypoints 15 Maslow

[i] Adapted from Abraham H. Maslow, Motivation and Personality, 2nd edition (New York: Harper and Row, 1970), p. 300-394; and Abraham H. Maslow, The Farther Reaches of Human Nature, (New York: Viking Press, 1971), p. 300.

[ii] The church’s enthusiasm for primarily meeting belongingness and love needs sheds light on how churches grew during the post-World War II economic expansion. The Builder Generation (b. 1945 and before) was basking in unrivaled prosperity and a church-friendly milieu. Thus, tactics that meet belongingness and love needs such as membership classes and assimilation standards were touted (see Finke and Starke The Churching of America as well as additional factors discussed in Laurence Iannacone’s 1994 essay, “Why Strict Churches Are Strong” in American Journal of Sociology (Chicago: University of Chicago, 1994), vol. 99, no. 5, 1180-1211.

[iii] Hebrew chesed, Francis Brown, S. R. Driver and Charles A. Briggs, A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1974), 338.

Speaking Hashtags: #BreakForth16 #SalvationCenterTX

GRIEF & Making Room for Grief Within the Church

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: “The Holmes-Rahe Scale tells us that a major reason many people visit a church is because they are trying to cope with grief. Yet, I have found few churches ready and equipped to deal with this need. Read this article for important ideas about how churches can meet the needs of those who are coming to our churches in search of help through their grieving process.”

Read more at … http://www.huffingtonpost.com/lexi-behrndt/making-room-for-grief-within-the-church-_b_7286748.html

NEED MEETING & What Is Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs?

By Kendra Cherry, author of the Everything Psychology Book (2nd Edition).

- Image: J. Finkelstein

The hierarchy of needs is one of the best-known theories of motivation. Created by psychologist Abraham Maslow, the hierarchy is often displayed as a pyramid, with the most basic needs at the bottom and more complex needs at the peak.

The basic physiological needs are probably fairly apparent – these include the things that are vital to our survival. Some examples of the physiological needs include:

  • Food
  • Water
  • Breathing
  • Homeostasis

In addition to the basic requirements of nutrition, air and temperature regulation, the physiological needs also include such things as shelter and clothing. Maslow also included sexual reproduction in this level of the hierarchy of needs since it is essential to the survival and propagation of the species.

As we move up to the second level of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, the requirements start to become a bit more complex. At this level, the needs for security and safety become primary. People want control and order in their lives, so this need for safety and security contributes largely to behaviors at this level.

Some of the basic security and safety needs include:

  • Financial security
  • Heath and wellness
  • Safety against accidents and injury

Finding a job, obtaining health insurance and health care, contributing money to a savings account, and moving into a safer neighborhood are all examples of actions motivated by the security and safety needs.

The social needs in Maslow’s hierarchy include such things as love, acceptance and belonging. At this level, the need for emotional relationships drives human behavior. Some of the things that satisfy this need include:

  • Friendships
  • Romantic attachments
  • Family
  • Social groups
  • Community groups
  • Churches and religious organizations

In order to avoid problems such as loneliness, depression, and anxiety, it is important for people to feel loved and accepted by other people. Personal relationships with friends, family, and lovers play an important role, as does involvement in other groups that might include religious groups, sports teams, book clubs, and other group activities…

Read more at … http://psychology.about.com/od/theoriesofpersonality/ss/maslows-needs-hierarchy.htm

DIVERSITY & Nonwhites Less Likely to Feel Police Protect and Serve Them

by Justin McCarthy, Gallup Organization

  • Whites (60%) more trusting in police than nonwhites (49%)
  • More than six in 10 Americans have “a great deal” of respect for police

WASHINGTON, D.C. — As a grand jury decides whether to indict a white police officer for shooting an unarmed black teen in Ferguson, Missouri, Americans’ confidence in their local police to protect them from violent crime continues to differ by race, as it has since Gallup started measuring it. White Americans (60%) surveyed last month expressed more trust in police than nonwhites did (49%), although the 11-percentage-point gap is slightly smaller than the average 14-point gap seen since 1985.

Trend: Confidence in Police to Protect Them From Violent Crime, U.S. Whites vs. Nonwhites

Since 1985, Gallup has generally found double-digit differences between the percentages of U.S. whites and nonwhites who say they have “a great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in the ability of their local police to protect them. Just three times — in 1985, 1989 and 1998 — has the gap been below 10 percentage points.

Read more at … http://www.gallup.com/poll/179468/nonwhites-less-likely-feel-police-protect-serve.aspx

NEED-MEETING & The Social Progress Index as a Modern Version of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Michael Green: What the Social Progress Index can reveal

HOMELESSNESS & The Causes Of Homelessness #HomelessHub #SalvationArmy

Reproduced from: Stephen Gaetz, Jesse Donaldson, Tim Richter, & Tanya Gulliver (2013) The State of Homelessness in Canada 2013. Toronto: Canadian Homelessness Research Network Press.

People who are homeless are not a distinct and separate population. In fact the line between being homeless and not being homeless is quite fluid. In general, the pathways into and out of homelessness are neither linear nor uniform. Individuals and families who wind up homeless may not share much in common with each other, aside from the fact that they are extremely vulnerable, and lack adequate housing and income and the necessary supports to ensure they stay housed. The causes of homelessness reflect an intricate interplay between structural factors, systems failures and individual circumstances. Homelessness is usually the result of the cumulative impact of a number of factors, rather than a single cause.

Structural factors are economic and societal issues that affect opportunities and social environments for individuals. Key factors can include the lack of adequate income, access to affordable housing and health supports and/or the experience of discrimination. Shifts in the economy both nationally and locally can create challenges for people to earn an adequate income, pay for food and for housing…

Systems failures occur when other systems of care and support fail, requiring vulnerable people to turn to the homelessness sector, when other mainstream services could have prevented this need. Examples of systems failures include difficult transitions from child welfare, inadequate discharge planning for people leaving hospitals, corrections and mental health and addictions facilities and a lack of support for immigrants and refugees.

Individual and relational factors apply to the personal circumstances of a homeless person, and may include: traumatic events (e.g. house fire or job loss), personal crisis (e.g. family break-up or domestic violence), mental health and addictions challenges (including brain injury and fetal alcohol syndrome), which can be both a cause and consequence of homelessness and physical health problems or disabilities. Relational problems can include family violence and abuse, addictions, and mental health problems of other family members and extreme poverty.

Read more at … http://www.homelesshub.ca/about-homelessness/homelessness-101/causes-homelessness

FURTHER READING

Nowhere Else to Go: Inadequate Housing & Risk of Homelessness Among Families in Toronto’s Aging Rental Buildings

The Causes of Homelessness Among Older People in England

Homelessness – Causes & Effects (Volume 4): Background Report – a Profile and Policy Review of Homelessness in the Provinces of Ontario, Quebec and Alberta

The State of Homelessness in Canada 2013

Pathways to youth homelessness

Aboriginal Youth Talk about Structural Determinants as the Causes of their Homelessness

Keeping the Homeless Housed: An exploratory study of determinants of Homelessness in the Toronto community

Causes of homelessness among older people in Melbourne, Australia

From Homeless to Home: learning from people who have been homeless in Ottawa