STRATEGY & Setting priorities is not the same as setting strategy via #HarvardBusinessReview

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel. Church leaders have improved greatly in establishing Biblical values and mission statements. But strategy, real strategy which is actionable plans, is less clear to most congregants. http://www.LEADERSHIP.church has for 30+ years been helping churches create doable and successful plans for church health and growth. And, this includes bottom-up input from frontline leaders. Read this Harvard Business Review article to learn why.

Many Strategies Fail Because They’re Not Actually Strategies

One major reason for the lack of action is that “new strategies” are often not strategies at all. A real strategy involves a clear set of choices that define what the firm is going to do and what it’s not going to do. Many strategies fail to get implemented, despite the ample efforts of hard-working people, because they do not represent a set of clear choices.

Many so-called strategies are in fact goals…

Others may represent a couple of the firm’s priorities and choices, but they do not form a coherent strategy when considered in conjunction. …

It’s not just a top-down process. Another reason many implementation efforts fail is that executives see it as a pure top-down, two-step process: “The strategy is made; now we implement it.” That’s unlikely to work. A successful strategy execution process is seldom a one-way trickle-down cascade of decisions…

Stanford professor Robert Burgelman said, “Successful firms are characterized by maintaining bottom-up internal experimentation and selection processes while simultaneously maintaining top-driven strategic intent.” This is quite a mouthful, but what Burgelman meant is that you indeed need a clear, top-down strategic direction (such as Hornby’s set of choices). But this will only be effective if, at the same time, you enable your employees to create bottom-up initiatives that fall within the boundaries set by that strategic intent.

Read more at … https://hbr.org/2017/11/many-strategies-fail-because-theyre-not-actually-strategies?utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter&utm_campaign=hbr

CRITICISM & 3 Questions That Will Diffuse Criticism (and move a relationship forward) by @BobWhitesel published by @BiblicalLeader Magazine.

By Bob Whitesel D.Min., Ph.D., Biblical Leadership Magazine, 12/18/19.

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During 30 years of consulting and coaching, I’ve found three simple questions that leaders can use to diffuse criticism. Today responding to criticism is increasingly important, because divisions must be defused before they spread into viral polarization. Here are three questions that will accomplish this.

Elsie Keith, CEO of Lucid Meetings, provides the first question to ask when you are criticized or in a highly critical environment. It is to be curious and reply with curiosity.  

Question 1:

“Wow, ok. I hear that you feel xyz. I want to understand that better. Can you tell me more about where you’re coming from?”

This reply doesn’t mean you agree, but it does tell them they’ve been heard. It begins to establish a rapport between the two of you. You weren’t acquiescing to their criticism. But you’re letting them know they’ve been heard and that you want to learn about their perspective. 

Depending on how you count them, in the New Testament there are between 200 – 300 questions that Jesus asked his listeners. In fact, as a rabbi or Jewish teacher (John 1:38), Jesus would be expected to ask questions. 

For example, even as a young man, when Jesus remained in the temple he defused his parents’ criticism as they arrived. “His parents didn’t know what to think. “Son,” his mother said to him, “why have you done this to us? Your father and I have been frantic, searching for you everywhere.” Jesus replied, “But why did you need to search? Didn’t you know that I must be in my Father’s house?” (Luke 2:48-49 NLT). 

Jesus wasn’t acquiescing to their criticism (e.g. “why have you done this to us?”). Rather he let them know they’d been heard. Then he deepened their understanding, “Didn’t you know that I must be in my Father’s house?” (Luke 2:49 NLT). 

While talking with Dr. Rob Voyle, a colleague who utilizes counseling skills called “appreciative inquiry,” I learned the next two questions to ask.

Question 2:

“What do you need to be able to move on?” 

“Anxiety is always about the future, not the past,” Dr. Voyle told me. Therefore, when criticism is given it’s because someone is not able to see a preferred future. Instead, they see a future that worries them. 

Jesus’ response in John 1:38 NLT gives us an example. “As Jesus walked by, John looked at him and declared, ‘Look! There is the Lamb of God!’ When John’s two disciples heard this, they followed Jesus. Jesus looked around and saw them following. ‘What do you want?’ he asked them. They replied, ‘Rabbi’ (which means ‘Teacher’), ‘where are you staying?’ ‘Come and see,’ he said. It was about four o’clock in the afternoon when they went with him to the place where he was staying, and they remained with him the rest of the day. (John 1:36-39 NLT).

Asking others about the future and what they need to get there, is the second question. “If you focus on the past you’ll just hash it over with no resolution or progress” Dr. Voyle stated. 

How many times have we hashed out the past only to find ourselves in the same polarized state after hours of discussion? This is because the direction of our discussion is wrong. It should not be about the past, but about the future (or you’ll get stuck in the past). Once you’ve asked question number one, letting them know they’ve been heard, then it’s time to focus your discussion on what’s ahead. Focusing on the future and their role on it moves the relationship forward.

The third question is to figure out where the person fits in the future solution.

Question 3:

“What do you love to do, what you want to do more than anything else?”

This helps you and them begin a dialogue about where they fit into the solution. You want their participation in the solution to be based upon what they want to do. But, you also want them to understand that their participation might require them to do things that they won’t enjoy.

In Jesus’ leadership we see that though he is omniscient and knows their questions in advance, he engages in the following questions and answers. 

“Then James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came over and spoke to him. “Teacher,” they said, “we want you to do us a favor.” “What is your request?” he asked. They replied, “When you sit on your glorious throne, we want to sit in places of honor next to you, one on your right and the other on your left.” But Jesus said to them, “You don’t know what you are asking! Are you able to drink from the bitter cup of suffering I am about to drink? Are you able to be baptized with the baptism of suffering I must be baptized with?” (Mark 10:35-38 NLT)

Jesus asked a question that pointed out that their desires were fleshly, carnal and self-serving. Then, Jesus put those desires in perspective by saying that following Him meant being immersed in bitter pain, suffering and sacrifice. In the biblical lives of James and John we see that Jesus’ answer began to foster in them humility, tenacity and sacrifice. James eventually was stabbed to death on the orders of Herod (Acts 12:2) and John would live many of his elder years in a slave-labor colony on the island of Patmos (Rev. 1). Both had changed from their boisterous, self-seeking nature ( they were labeled, “sons of thunder”) to become models of sacrifice and service.

So as I coach leaders about receiving criticism while charting out a future strategic plan, these three questions are critical. To recap, begin communication by responding with curiosity. The second question is to ask them what they need to be able to move forward. And the third question is to ask what they love to do and discussing together what their participation in the future will look like. 

With these three questions you can begin a discussion that will quickly move the focus from criticism … toward a solution.

Read the original article at … https://www.biblicalleadership.com/blogs/3-questions-that-will-diffuse-criticism/

STRATEGY & If You Don’t Want to Be a Boring Leader, Stop ‘Strategizing’ and Do This Instead

Commentary by Professor B: I research/teach strategy and have led organizations from churches to denominational executives through the strategizing process. And, one of the biggest missteps is to create a strategy with too many people or too few involved. By “too many,” I mean having in the room people who are there because it is politically prudent to do so, instead of having experts in strategy involved. And by “having too few,” I mean not having people in the room who are involved in front-line, person to person tactical application of the strategy. For more on that see John Kotter, in his seminal article on “Leading Change: Why change efforts fail” in Harvard Business Review. And, for another overview of how to prevent these missteps, check out this INC. Magazine article.

If You Don’t Want to Be a Boring Leader, Stop ‘Strategizing’ and Do This Instead

by Robin Camarote, Inc. Magazine, 10/30/17.

The process problem is that we approach strategic planning as a group exercise. After spending literally hundreds of hours watching groups try to think together, I can assure you that no (okay, very few) brilliant strategic ideas come out when people gather.

The people problem is a touchy one. People invited to strategic planning efforts get there because of their title and their position — not because of their insight, energy, optimism, or even knowledge of the real issues facing the organization. They’re there because they have to be…

So, what could we all do better to avoid these process and people pitfalls?

  1. First, recognize that the strategy part of strategic planning is better done upfront and individually rather than in a group. Organizations should be training their staff on an ongoing basis to build critical thinking skills, stay connected with customers and the broader industry, and anticipate problems. These skills will make them more able to diagnose problems in the company and keep abreast of what’s trending in their market. Then, instead of bringing groups together, you can challenge the managers (at a minimum — you could include other members of the staff in this as well) to state the biggest problem they see facing the organization and how they’d propose to fix it. From there, you can either set up an organic process by which managers must build coalitions of support to move their solution forward, or, if you’re the team leader, you could simply pick the solutions that you see as most viable.
  2. Second, get in the habit of creating mixed planning teams. There is no reason that the most important planning exercise should be limited to those with certain titles. They might have earned the promotion, but they shouldn’t be the default group included. At a minimum, include representatives from various tiers in the organization, including junior staff and back-office support functions. If you’re really ambitious, add a representative customer and industry expert. Bringing in external perspectives is the best way to ensure you’re not stuck in an echo chamber and that this critical planning process doesn’t become just another thing to do among your senior executives. Most people tend to be on their best, most professional behavior when there is an outsider in the room — so facilitating the conversation becomes easier, as well.

Read more at … https://www.inc.com/robin-camarote/if-you-dont-want-to-be-a-boring-leader-stop-strategizing-do-this-instead.html

strategic planning strategy forecasting strategy Wesley Seminary

STRATEGY & Moving To Blue Ocean Strategy: A Five-Step Process To Make The Shift

by Steve Denning, Forbes Magazine, 7/25/17.

In 2005, Blue Ocean Strategy, Expanded Edition: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant, a book by Professors W. Chan Kim and Rénee Mauborgne, launched a revolution in business strategy. After all, which firm would not to be operating in “uncontested market space,” where “competition was irrelevant”? Instead of struggling to survive in the bloody shark-infested “Red Oceans” of vicious competition, why not move to the “Blue Oceans” where there was little or no competition?

What inspired the authors was not “dividing up markets or the globe,” but rather organizations and individuals that created “new frontiers of opportunity, growth, and jobs,” where success was not about fighting for a bigger slice of an existing, often shrinking pie, but about “creating a larger economic pie for all.” The book was a publishing sensation. It sold more than 4 million copies and has been translated into 44 different languages.

Now, 12 years later, the authors offer an exciting new book that synthesizes their experience in assisting with the implementation of Blue Ocean strategy. The book, Blue Ocean Shift: Beyond Competing – Proven Steps to Inspire Confidence and Seize New Growth, is published this week by Hachette. It includes the experience of organizations large and small, for profit, nonprofit and governments.

In their work since the launch of their 2005 book, the authors have found three key components in successful Blue Ocean shifts:

• Mindset: The authors found that, as in the world of Agile management, Blue Ocean strategy is fundamentally a shift in mindset. It involves “expanding mental horizons and shifting understanding of where opportunity lies.”

• Tools: Successful implementers of Blue Ocean strategy have used practical tools to systematically “translate blue ocean thinking into commercially compelling new offerings.” Sporadic, one-off “Blue Ocean strategy” is one thing: systematically adopting Blue Ocean thinking is another.

• Human-ness: Successful implementers exemplify “a humanistic process, which inspires people’s confidence to own and drive the process to own and drive the process for effective execution.”

… The Five Step Process

The book offers a five-step process for systematically reproducing such strategic triumphs, and shows how a Blue Ocean initiative can be successfully launched in even the most bureaucratic organization that is trapped in a bloody Red Ocean. The five steps are:

1. Choosing the right place to start and constructing the right Blue Ocean team for the initiative.

2. Getting clear about the current state of play

3. Uncovering the hidden pain points that limit the current size of the industry and discovering an ocean of non-customers.

4. Systematically reconstructing market boundaries and developing alternative Blue Ocean opportunities.

5. Selecting the right Blue Ocean move, conducting rapid market tests, finalizing, and launching the shift.

Though this process, the organization is able to move from the limitations of competing within the existing industry (“settlers”) to migrate towards greater value improvement (“migrators”) and eventually towards creating new value for people who are not already customers (the “pioneers” of marketing-creating innovation.)

Professors Kim & Mauborgne (Hachette)

From settlers and migrators to pioneers: Image from from Blue Ocean Shift by Professors Kim & Mauborgne

The Trap Of Mere Product Improvement

In the process, the book shows how to move beyond the trap of merely focusing on making things better for existing customers. Thus, usually product improvement doesn’t lead to large new markets of those who were formerly non-customers. If it does, that is a happy accident, rather than the main goal. To get more consistent success in generating market-creating innovations, an explicit focus onattracting non-customers is needed. This includes (a) soon-to-be non-customers; (b) refusing non-customers and (c) unexplored non-customers.

Professors Kim & Mauborgne (Hachette)

Categories of non-customers: Image from Blue Ocean Shift by Professors Kim & Mauborgne

Read more at … https://www.forbes.com/sites/stevedenning/2017/09/24/moving-to-blue-ocean-strategy-a-five-step-process-to-make-the-shift/#5d7740327f11

non-churchgoers innovation adapters

STRATEGY & Why churches need blue-ocean strategies

by Bob Whitesel D,Min., Ph.D, , Biblical Leadership Magazine, 9/18/17.

W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne analyzed 150 years of strategic decision-making and concluded that every strategy could be described as either a “red ocean strategy” or a “blue ocean strategy.” A red ocean strategy is where you go after the same people as your competitors and try to meet the same needs that your competitors are meeting. Therefore you fight over the same fish and, as sharks feeding on the same fish, the water becomes red with blood.

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A blue ocean strategy, however, finds new segments of the market that are not having their needs met and begins to meet those needs. Therefore you are not competing with your competitors, but rather you are meeting needs in a segment of the market that the other competitors have overlooked.

This is very important for the church. Most churches typically try to have a better children’s ministry, a more professional worship team or a more visible/attractive facility in hopes of attracting people to the church. Typically this attracts other Christians looking for a better experience.

And, my observation has been that over the past three decades more and more churches have tried to grow by focusing on attracting other Christians rather than meeting the needs of non-churchgoers.

A red ocean vs. blue ocean strategy for the church means reaching non-churchgoers [need-meeting] rather than just reaching church-goers [attraction]. Take a look at this comparison between the two strategies published by Sage Growth Partners.

Here is a helpful comparison:

 For more insights, see W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne’s Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant (Boston: Harvard Business Review Books).

Photo source: istock

Read more at … https://www.biblicalleadership.com/blogs/why-churches-need-blue-ocean-rather-than-red-ocean-strategies/

NEED-MEETING & Why You Want a Blue Ocean, Rather Than a Red Ocean Strategy

by Bob Whitesel D.Min., Ph.D., 10/25/17.

W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne analyzed 150 years of strategic decision-making and concluded that every strategy can be described as either a “red ocean strategy” or a “blue ocean strategy.” A red ocean strategy is where you go after the same people as your competitors and try to meet the same needs that your competitors are meeting. Therefore you fight over the same fish and, as sharks feeding on the same fish, the water becomes red with blood.

A blue ocean strategy however finds new segments of the market that are not having their needs met and begin to meet those needs. Therefore you are not competing with your competitors, but rather you are meeting needs in a segment of the market that the other competitors have overlooked.

This is very important for the church. Most churches typically try to have a better children’s ministry, a more professional worship team or a more visible/attractive facility in hopes of attracting people to the church. Typically this attracts other Christians looking for a better experience.

And, over the past three decades more and more churches have tried to grow by focusing on attracting other Christians rather than meeting the needs of non-churchgoers.

Many years ago when the airline industry was suffering from too much competition, many carriers tried to increase their service to their flying customers. They wound up competing with each other and creating a red ocean of blood over the existing flying public. Stalwart and storied carriers such as Northwest Airlines disappeared.

At the same time a young start up company called Southwest Airlines focused on making flights cheaper along with the customer experience better. Their early motto was “everyone flies first class.” The result was meeting the need that a flying public desired of cheaper flights. This meant that they weren’t competing just for an existing market, but they were reaching out to people who typically didn’t fly to a nearby location. Now low cost meant the non-flying would considering a shorter flight.

A red ocean vs. blue ocean strategy for the church means reaching non-churchgoers [need-meeting] rather than church goers [attraction]. Take a look at this comparison between the two strategies published by Sage Growth Partners.

#PowellChurch #DMin #LEAD558 LEAD558

INNOVATION & A Comparison Between Red Ocean Strategy & Blue Ocean Strategy

by Sage Growth Partners, 3/17/09.

Read more at … https://www.slideshare.net/mobile/SageGrowthPartners/blue-ocean-innovation-bli

creativity need-meeting needs safety needs

EVALUATION & Clearing the Universal Fog Over 2 Types of Goals: Tactical & Strategic

by Bob Whitesel D.Min., Ph.D., 12/11.15.

One of the primarily culprits of goals not being met is not having “measureable” goals.  And, there are two types of goals that should be measured.

TACTICAL GOALS:  Tactical goals (such as “start an  ESL program” or “launch a new small group”) are specific tactical (i.e. planning) goals that support “broader” and “wide-ranging” church goals.

STRATEGIC GOALS:  These broader, more wide-ranging church goals are strategic goals, and they could be something like: “to have more congregants involved in Bible study, fellowship opportunities and prayer meetings than last year.”  These goals are strategic goals, and they can be traced back to metrics Luke described in Acts 2:42-47. Though Luke was not saying every church needed to use these metric, he did use them himself to describe for posterity “how” the church grew after Peter’s sermon.  For more on these metrics click here … https://churchhealthwiki.wordpress.com/2014/10/20/church-growth-a-definition-mcgavran-housedividedbook/

DIFFERENCES:  For more on the differences between tactics and strategies see … https://churchhealthwiki.wordpress.com/2015/06/12/measurement-a-reliable-valid-tool-to-measure-church-growthhealth-organixbook/

Leadership Exercise

Here is a leadership exercise to help you think about and differentiate between these two types of goals.  This exercise will look at how we should measure individual tactical actions (e.g. start a new ministry, etc.) and how we should measure bigger strategic goals (e.g. if the church is growing in maturity, unity and service to the community paralleling the metrics Luke used).

A) Listen.  The audio attachment though prepared for my students, will give leaders ideas about how to undertake this leadership exercise.

 

 

B) Read.  This exercise will make a lot more sense if you read the pdf from “A House Divided” that is provided here:  (It is also provided to my students in their weekly course materials).   So, read the “House Divided – Evaluate Your Success” pdf and then listen to the audio recording and you should be on your way toward dispelling the “universal fog” that surrounds most church leadership (for more on the universal fog, see “A Universal Fog” and “The Facts Needed” in Donald A. McGavran’s Understanding Church Growth [Grand Rapids, Mich.: Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1970], 76-120).

C) Discuss by answering the first two questions, and then one of the following of the following questions for discussion.

1) Share two things you learned about the differences between a tactical goal and a strategic goal.

2) Give an example of a strategic goal and then a tactical goal that might support it.

3) Which is usually easier to measure?

4) Which do leaders usually focus upon?

5) What do you think Dr. McGavran meant by the term: “universal fog?”

AN OVERVIEW of MEASUREMENT METRICS: In four of my books I have updated and modified a church measurement tool.  You will find a chapter on measurement in each of these books:

Cure for the Common Church, (Wesleyan Publishing House), chapter “Chapter 6: How Does a Church Grow Learners,” pp. 101-123.
> ORGANIX: Signs of Leadership in a Changing Church (Abingdon Press), “Chapter 8: Measure 4 Types of Church Growth,” pp. 139-159.
> Growth By Accident, Death By Planning (Abingdon Press), “Chapter 7: Missteps with Evaluation,” pp. 97-108/
> A House Divided: Bridging the Generation Gaps In Your Church (Abingdon Press), “Chapter 10: Evaluate Your Success,” pp. 202-221.

I explain that church growth involves four types of congregational growth.  It is a seriously incorrect assumption to assume church growth is all about numbers.  It is only 1/4 about numbers and 3/4 about the other types of growth mentioned in Acts 2:42-47.  In the New Testament we find…

> Maturation Growth, i.e. growth in maturity,Acts 2:42-43.
> Growth in Unity: Acts 2:44-46.
> Growth in Favor, i.e. among non-Christians, Acts 2:47a.
> Growth in number of salvations, i.e. which God does according to this verse, Acts 2:47b.

For more see … https://churchhealthwiki.wordpress.com/2015/06/12/measurement-a-reliable-valid-tool-to-measure-church-growthhealth-organixbook/

STRATEGIC PLANNING & A Simple QSPM Grid To Assess Which Visionary’s Idea is Best

by Bob Whitesel, D.Min., Ph.D., 9/17/15.

A former student told how a congregant abused the power of “vision” to push through an idea that was not in the best interest of the church.  The student wished there could be a way to prevent persuasive forecasters from selling the church on ideas, that though they may look good in a vision, in reality are not good for the church.

Here is his observation with some comments on how to evaluate such persuasive vision-casters:

Dear Dr. Whitesel, For years ____church name___  has debated two issues. Do we build an elevator or remodel the kitchen?  The elevator ended up being built.  I remember how it all went down.  A board member gave a vision statement of why we needed an elevator and painted a picture of the future of our church and how an elevator would benefit us.  The board unanimously voted in favor and the elevator was built.”  Sincerely, ___Name of Student___

My comments:

I reminded the student about how we learned about a “Quantitative Strategic Planning Matrix” (QSPM).  Basically this is an exercise (via a grid) through which we can measure numerically which of several tactics (e.g. an elevator for a church, a kitchen remodel or teaching English as a second language) will best help a church attain a vision that is based upon a SWOT.

Basically, with a vision statement and accompanying SWOT analysis, the student could then create a Quantitative Strategic Planning Matrix (QSPM) and numerically compared the two strategies (elevator or remodel a kitchen).

See Figure 5.8 (Smith, et. al. 2011, p. 100, click to enlarge) to see a QSPM for a church that was comparing its options of either relocating or starting a new service.

FIGURE ©Whitesel Ch MBA Figure 5.8
From this figure, I think you can see that in the ecclesial world we often lack knowledge about management tools, such as a QSPM, that would allow our leaders to make better choices regarding programming.  Usually churches make decisions about programming based upon the four Ps: Proximity (a church nearby tried this program and it worked), Popularity (a new program is so popular that your church wants to try it), Propensity (a leader in the church has a propensity, or partiality for a program), or Persuasiveness (of the presenter – and what happened in this case).

All of these ways to choose a strategy would be criticized in the business world as nothing more than hunches.  This is why many of our lay leaders, who are successful business people, are bothered by our cavalier attitude to tactic selection.  If they’ve taken business courses in undergrad or graduate school, they are already familiar with a QSPM.  And thus they often wonder how we can lead such an important organization as the church without an understanding a basic principles of planning such as a QSPM.Church Leader's MBA cover

Sometimes students struggle with using a Quantitative Strategic Planning Matrix (QSPM) and think, “this looks too complicated, I don’t think I will use it.”  But, it is a great exercise for a leadership retreat.  A QSPM can give an actual rating (a number) whereby you can compare two worthy ideas and see which one better matches up with your vision.

Now, you don’t need to use a QSPM every time you have a new idea.  But, when there two competing ideas (like in the story by the student above) then it is best to use a QSPM and get an actual numerical comparison.  It can take the emotional vision-persuasion elements out of important decisions and make these decisions more balanced.

STRATEGY & Is Yours Deliberate or Emergent?

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: Henry Mintzberg, in his classic “Strategic Management Journal” article (see link) pointed out that there are two types of strategies: deliberate & emergent. I explored this difference for the church in my book “Growth by Accident, Death by Planning: How NOT To Kill a Growing Church (Abingdon Press). Here is a brief explanation.

  1. “Deliberate” strategies are based upon analysis of strengths, opportunities, etc. (i.e SWOT).
  2. “Emergent” strategies occur when unforeseen opportunities are taken advantage of, sometimes accidentally. Emergent strategies are almost impossible to replicate. But in the church world this is often when we see rapid church growth.

The lesson from Mintzberg’s classic article is to be prepared to take advantage of opportunities, but to spend the majority of your time making deliberate long-term plants.

Strategic Managemtent Journal, Vol. 6, 25 7-2 72 (1985)

Of Strategies, Deliberate and Emergent

HENRY MINTZBERG
Faculty of Management, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

JAMES A. WATERS
Faculty of Administrative Studies, York University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Summary
Deliberate and emergent strategies mnay be conceived as twvoends of a continuumn along which real- world strategies lie. This paper seeks to develop this notion, and So?le basic issuies related to strategic choice, by elaborating along this continum various types of strategies uncovered in research. These includclestrategies labelled planned, entrepreneutrial, ideological, umZ1brella, process, uinconnected, consensuts anld im-posed,

Download the journal article here … http://sjbae.pbworks.com/w/file/fetch/93336366/Mintzberg,%20Waters%20(1985).%20Of%20Strategies,%20Deliberate%20and%20Emergent.%20SMJ.pdf

PLANNING & A Better Option Than Just Trial-and-error (A Leadership Exercise)

by Bob Whitesel D.Min., Ph.D., 9/8/15.

I created this exercise to help leaders see that strategy planning is often undertaken in the church in a emotional and imprecise manner (and that is something we must change).

And so in previous postings, I explained how to rate various plans with a simple SWOT analysis of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

Yet some readers and students (especially those with strategic/operational leadership leanings) sometimes find such quantitative analysis a bit tedious. (I did actually when I was in seminary.  But as I progressed through graduate school I came to enjoy research).

Thus for the above two reasons, sometimes those with strategic/tactical gifts and those with tactical/operational attributes will find this exercise helpful.

A Leadership Exercise

Let’s start by recalling that Baumhart asked business people “What does ethical mean to you?” (Church Leaders MBA, p. 29)  The following were the answers he received:

“What does ethical mean to you?”  Answers:
1)  What my feelings tell me is right.  50%
2)  In accordance with my religious beliefs. 25%
3)  Based on the Golden Rule. 18%

Now, let’s see if this also might be true regarding how Christian ministries pick their strategies (and select programming).  Here is an adaption of Baumhart:

How do churches usually decide upon programming?
#1:  What they feel is a good program.
#2:  In accordance with what other Christians and churches think about a program.
#3:  A program based upon a bible passage.

So, pick either #1, #2 or #3 and tell why it isn’t (or is) a good way to choose a strategic ministry tactic.  And, give an example if you know of one.

For example, you might explain why “relying on your feelings” is not a good way to choose a program.  And, you might site a personal example.  Or you might share why basing a strategy on a merely bible passage could be misleading.  Again, you could give an example from your personal history with the church.

Baumhart, R. (1968). An honest profit: What businessmen say about ethics in business. New York: Holt, Reinhart and Wilson.

Smith, Mark and Wright, David. W. (2011). The church leaders’ MBA: What business school instructors wish church leaders knew about management. Circleville, OH: Ohio Christian University.

STRATEGY PLANNING & ; The Essence of Strategy is Choosing What Not to Do

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: “Many Christian organizations try and do every thing for which they are given an opportunity. This is not strategic thinking. Strategic thinking is deciding what things to do and what things not to do. Napoleon Bonaparte summed up strategic thinking this way: ‘In order to concentrate superior strength in one place, economy of force must be exercised in other places.’ More recently Michael Porter said, “The essence of strategy is choosing what not to do.” When leaders are struggling to understand strategy read this article … and remember Porter’s adage.”

Read more at … https://hbr.org/2014/05/3-myths-that-kill-strategic-planning/

STRATEGY & 5 Common Strategic Planning Pitfalls #IncMagazine

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: “Learn how to avoid newbie pitfalls when using a SWOT analysis by reading this article (and in doing so, students can shorten the number of my comments on their SWOT homework). For more insights see the new strategic planning book “Winning the Long Game: How Strategic Leaders Shape the Future by Steven Krupp and Paul J.H. Schoemaker.”

Read more at … http://www.inc.com/paul-j-h-schoemaker/five-traps-swot-analysis.html

PREACHING & Research Shows How to Give a “Sticky” Story #HarvardBusinessReview

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: “Here is the latest research about how to use story and structure for good communication. Lessons include:

1) use a story or metaphor to communicate,

2) use your own experiences,

3) don’t make yourself the hero,

4) highlight a struggle,

5) keep it simple.”

And here is an insightful quote: “In our information-saturated age, business leaders, ‘won’t be heard unless they’re telling stories,’ says Nick Morgan author of Power Cues. ‘Facts and figures and all the rational things that we think are important in the business world actually don’t stick in our minds at all,’ he says. But stories create ‘sticky’ memories by attaching emotions to things that happen. That means leaders who can create and share good stories have a powerful advantage over others.”

by Carolyn O’Hara, Harvard Business Review

Read more at … http://blogs.hbr.org/2014/07/how-to-tell-a-great-story/

STRATEGY & Vision / Mission by Peter Drucker

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: “Peter Drucker in his book Non-profit Management emphasizes how strategy and vision must both be in place for effective ministry.

But, I have noticed that church leaders often wax poetic on mission/vision – yet spend little time conducting the basics of strategic planning such as a SWOT analysis.

This week I was joined by nationally-known pastor Nelson Searcy on my annual tour of England on the “Land and Leadership of Wesley” tour. I am always amazed how Nelson has such a good mix of vision (strategic leadership) and tactical leadership (a leadership ability to make specific fiscal assessments and to craft concrete goals. Did you know John Wesley was the same way?

It seems like churches are often full of dreams but with few concrete plans to get there. This is probably because most pastors are ‘strategic leaders.’ Now, there is nothing wrong if a lead pastor is a strategic leader (e.g. ‘visionary’ in orientation) … as long as that pastor partners with a ‘tactical’ leader to form an effective team.

For examples of ‘strategic, tactical and operational leaders’ (plus a short quiz to discover who in your team is which) see Preparing for Change Reaction (Whitesel, 2010).

I also wrote a helpful chapter on strategic management in The Church Leader’s MBA (Ohio Christian Univ. Press, 2009). There I explained how churches can easily conduct the basics of strategic planning: a SWOT analysis.

Here is the quote by Peter Drucker that sums up the importance of strategic leadership:”

Peter Drucker states, “Good intentions don’t move mountains; bulldozers do. In non-profit management, the mission and the plan – if that’s all there is – are the good intentions. Strategies are the bulldozers. They convert what you want to do into accomplishments… St. Augustine said one prays for miracles but works for results.” (Drucker, 1990).

STRATEGY & Three Factors of a Good Strategy by Peter Drucker

Peter Drucker in his book Non-profit Management points to the three elements of a good strategy:

“To work systematically on the productivity of an institution, one needs a strategy …. The first factor is always the people. It’s not a matter of working harder; we learned that long ago. It’s a matter of working smarter, and above all, of placing people where they can really produce. The second universal factor is money. How do we get a little more out of the money that we have? It’s always scarce. And the third factor is time.” (Drucker, 1990)

CREATIVITY & The Secret To Creativity, Intelligence, And Scientific Thinking

by Belle Beth Cooper, Fast Company, 6/18/14

Read more at … http://m.fastcompany.com/3031994/the-future-of-work/the-secret-to-creativity-intelligence-and-scientific-thinking

FIGURE Knowledge vs Experience

 

FELLOWSHIP & How Many Friends Does One Person Need? Video of Dunbar Explaining the Dunbar Number

Professor Robin Dunbar explores if there is a limit to the number of friends we can keep track of and explains the origin of “Dunbar’s Number.”

STRATEGY & How A SWOT Analysis Relates to a TOWS Matrix #ChurchLeadersMBA

Watkins, M. (27 Mar 2007). From SWOT to TOWS: Answering a Reader’s Strategy Question.

SWOT pic

Harvard Business Review. Retrieved from http://blogs.hbr.org/2007/03/from-swot-to-tows-answering-a-readers-strategy-question/

STRATEGY & An #InfoGraphic of a SWOT Analysis #NotreDameMedozaSchoolofBusiness

SWOT Analysis Illustration from University of Notre Dame Mendoza School of Business

http://www.notredameonline.com/resources/business-administration/what-is-swot-analysis/#.U2_xe_ldUX0

#FlintFirst