Three Trapdoors of Volunteer Dropout

You just had another volunteer quit your team. Ouch. That hurts every time.

Your frustration with your team is mounting. Who will leave next? And what will be the excuse next time?

Before you go blaming their lack of commitment, first, take a step back and evaluate if you’re experiencing any of these three common leadership pitfalls that can lead to volunteer dropout:

Lack of preparation.
You’ve developed the habit of doing things at the last minute or are totally winging it.

Lack of preparation leads to poor performance. Poor performance leads to finger pointing. Finger pointing leads to excuses. Excuses lead to low morale. And low moral leads to a higher dropout rate of volunteers.

Lack of communication.
You’ve developed the habit of assuming people know what’s going on. As a result, people are feeling left out, frustrated and confused.

Lack of communication leads to confusion. Confusion leads to mistakes. Mistakes lead to lower confidence. Lower confidence leads to a higher dropout rate of volunteers.

Lack of systems.
Your team does the same work every week, but you don’t have a written system for how you do it. As a result, things are done at varying levels of excellence (or non-excellence) every time.

Lack of systems leads to inconsistent behaviors. Inconsistent behaviors lead to mediocrity. Mediocrity leads to lower levels of enthusiasm. Lower levels of enthusiasm lead to a higher dropout rate of volunteers.

If you’re willing to put in the time and effort it takes to break the bad habits that lead to these common leadership pitfalls, not only are you likely to see a lower dropout rate of volunteers, you may just find yourself having more volunteers than you know what to do with.

Dig Deeper:
Video: 5 Keys to Promoting Leaders Successfully
Video: 4 Things Robbing Your Time 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mac Lake

Mac Lake

Mac is a pioneering influence in the church planting movement. In 1997, he planted Carolina Forest Community Church (Myrtle Beach, South Carolina). In 2004, he began serving as Leadership Development Pastor at Seacoast Church (Charleston, South Carolina) where he served for over six years. In July 2010, Mac Lake joined with West Ridge Church to become the Visionary Architect for the LAUNCH Network. In 2015 Mac begin working with Will Mancini and Auxano to develop the Leadership Pipeline process. He joined Auxano full time in 2018. Mac and his wife, Cindy, live in Charleston, South Carolina and have three children, Brandon, Jordan and Brianna.

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— Russell C
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Excellent information, thank You
 
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— Bolstering your Leadership Armoury-Part 2- Leadership series – Toyer M–All things testing
 

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The One Practice of Leadership Development That Transcends Words

Your team isn’t developing leaders and now the shortage of leaders is creating a mess for the whole organization. Your staff is stressed out and volunteers feel unappreciated and out of the loop. The lack of development is obvious and the same ole people are doing all the work.

Your team just isn’t getting it. You’ve preached it, set development goals, and even shown them training videos. But nothing. They’re still not getting it.

Maybe the problem isn’t in the telling them to do it; perhaps the problem is in the modeling of how to do it.  If you’re not modeling leadership development yourself, then your team will not see it as a value, no matter how much you talk about it.

I see it all the time – senior leaders placing expectations on their teams to do things that they themselves are not doing. Here’s what I’ve discovered in over 30 years of doing leadership development:  Modeling speaks louder than words.

Modeling gives people a vision of what could be. Modeling provides a template others can follow. When leaders see a picture of how it could be, then they believe it can be reality.

So maybe it’s time for you to take a long, hard look in the mirror and ask yourself, “have I been a strong model of leadership development for my team?” If the answer is no, make a promise to yourself to get started developing leaders yourself TODAY, then the mess beneath you might just begin to go away.

Additional Resources:
Video: 3 Questions to Diagnose Your Leadership Development Results

> Read more from Mac.


 

Connect with an Auxano Navigator to learn more about Leadership Development at your church.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mac Lake

Mac Lake

Mac is a pioneering influence in the church planting movement. In 1997, he planted Carolina Forest Community Church (Myrtle Beach, South Carolina). In 2004, he began serving as Leadership Development Pastor at Seacoast Church (Charleston, South Carolina) where he served for over six years. In July 2010, Mac Lake joined with West Ridge Church to become the Visionary Architect for the LAUNCH Network. In 2015 Mac begin working with Will Mancini and Auxano to develop the Leadership Pipeline process. He joined Auxano full time in 2018. Mac and his wife, Cindy, live in Charleston, South Carolina and have three children, Brandon, Jordan and Brianna.

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comment_post_ID); ?> I ask: “How long have you been coming here?” It’s works in every situation.
 
— Russell C
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Excellent information, thank You
 
— Thomas TC Gotcher
 
comment_post_ID); ?> […] source: https://www.visionroom.com/leadership-and-the-power-of-listening/ […]
 
— Bolstering your Leadership Armoury-Part 2- Leadership series – Toyer M–All things testing
 

Clarity Process

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Building Leadership Development Habits

Charles Duhigg in his book The Power of habit says, “A habit is a formula our brain automatically follows.” It’s something you do that’s on autopilot. But one of the most important things to understand about a habit is you have to build it. It’s not automatic. We have to cross what I call the Discipline to Habit barrier. First, we have to develop discipline, discipline is something we do willingly, consciously and intentionally, but not automatically. The more we do it, it becomes ingrained in us and over time it moves from being a Discipline to being a Habit. It becomes automatic to us.

The practice of developing leaders is typically not something most people would say is a habit for them. But if you want to see an abundance of talent and a deep bench in the leadership pipeline of your church it will require specific consistent behaviors to make it happen.

In this video, I share 6 habits you can build that will impact your ability to develop more leaders for your leadership pipeline. I’ll share the habit, but then give you an action step with each so you can begin to do them as disciplines but eventually build these into habits over time.

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I would love to hear your comments on this topic so please comment below. Share the LINK for this video with your team and use the questions below in your next meeting.

LINK: https://youtu.be/0yuIriR5TZw

Discussion Questions:

  1. Which of the 6 Habits comes most naturally to you?
  2. Which of the 6 habits do you need to develop into your leadership? What impact would it have it you became consistent with that habit?
  3. What stood out to you the most from this video?
  4. What one action step could you take that would make the biggest difference in your leadership development efforts?

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mac Lake

Mac Lake

Mac is a pioneering influence in the church planting movement. In 1997, he planted Carolina Forest Community Church (Myrtle Beach, South Carolina). In 2004, he began serving as Leadership Development Pastor at Seacoast Church (Charleston, South Carolina) where he served for over six years. In July 2010, Mac Lake joined with West Ridge Church to become the Visionary Architect for the LAUNCH Network. In 2015 Mac begin working with Will Mancini and Auxano to develop the Leadership Pipeline process. He joined Auxano full time in 2018. Mac and his wife, Cindy, live in Charleston, South Carolina and have three children, Brandon, Jordan and Brianna.

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comment_post_ID); ?> I ask: “How long have you been coming here?” It’s works in every situation.
 
— Russell C
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Excellent information, thank You
 
— Thomas TC Gotcher
 
comment_post_ID); ?> […] source: https://www.visionroom.com/leadership-and-the-power-of-listening/ […]
 
— Bolstering your Leadership Armoury-Part 2- Leadership series – Toyer M–All things testing
 

Clarity Process

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The Most Powerful Function of Leadership Development

Entering into a leadership development relationship with someone is both a high honor and a weighty responsibility. In essence, you’re saying to them “follow me; I’ll be your model.” The first thought that comes to mind when I read this phrase is “who am I?” I’m far from being a perfect leader. What qualifies me to say, “follow me”?

Yet leadership development is most powerful when it’s carried out in a modeling relationship. I have to remind myself that I’m not being a model of perfection, I’m simply modeling a pattern; a pattern for them to watch, to reflect back on, to learn from. The man who mentored me was a completely different personality than me. He had a far different leadership style than I do. Yet as I was able to watch him go through the ups and downs of day-to-day leadership, his influence became a pattern for me to learn from.

In 1 Corinthians 11:1, Paul told those believers, “follow my example as I follow the example of Christ.” Paul knew he wasn’t modeling perfection; he was modeling a pattern of striving towards a consistent walk with Christ.

“Follow me” includes watch me fail and admit it. It means watch me sin and confess it. Watch me make a wrong decision and correct it. Watch me have a bad idea and laugh about it. Take the pressure off yourself. Don’t try to be perfect, but do strive to be a pattern of seeking Jesus in a way that those you lead will want to emulate.

> Read more from Mac.


 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mac Lake

Mac Lake

Mac is a pioneering influence in the church planting movement. In 1997, he planted Carolina Forest Community Church (Myrtle Beach, South Carolina). In 2004, he began serving as Leadership Development Pastor at Seacoast Church (Charleston, South Carolina) where he served for over six years. In July 2010, Mac Lake joined with West Ridge Church to become the Visionary Architect for the LAUNCH Network. In 2015 Mac begin working with Will Mancini and Auxano to develop the Leadership Pipeline process. He joined Auxano full time in 2018. Mac and his wife, Cindy, live in Charleston, South Carolina and have three children, Brandon, Jordan and Brianna.

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comment_post_ID); ?> I ask: “How long have you been coming here?” It’s works in every situation.
 
— Russell C
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Excellent information, thank You
 
— Thomas TC Gotcher
 
comment_post_ID); ?> […] source: https://www.visionroom.com/leadership-and-the-power-of-listening/ […]
 
— Bolstering your Leadership Armoury-Part 2- Leadership series – Toyer M–All things testing
 

Clarity Process

Three effective ways to start moving toward clarity right now.

Should I Say Yes to Mentoring?

In this Q&A Video I answer the question from a leader in South Carolina.

Many leaders recognize the power of mentoring in developing future leaders in their church or organization. Some mentoring relationships are short-term lasting a few weeks or a few months. But other mentoring relationships are long term lasting a year or longer.

Making a long term commitment to mentoring a leader can have massive impact on their life. A long term investment in leadership development will deepen the character, competencies and confidence of the young leader. But just because someone asks you to mentoring them doesn’t mean you need to say yes. So I give you two questions to process before saying yes to a mentoring relationship.

I would love to hear your comments on this topic so please comment below.

Use the discussion questions below with your team to help them grow as mentors. Share the link, ask them to SUBSCRIBE and then learn together.

LINK: https://youtu.be/DSRbJ0ffOo0

Discussion Questions

  • Has anyone ever mentored you over a long period of time?
  • If so, what impact did it have on you?
  • If not, what difference do you think it could’ve made if someone had?
  • What do you think the biggest challenges are of entering into a long term mentoring relationship?
  • As you consider the two questions Mac gave today who came to mind? (Someone you have high confidence in and high connection with)
  • What next steps do you need to take to improve or increase your mentoring impact on the lives of one or a few leaders around you?

Watch more of Mac’s videos here.


 

Connect with an Auxano Navigator to find out more about mentoring and the Leadership Pipeline.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mac Lake

Mac Lake

Mac is a pioneering influence in the church planting movement. In 1997, he planted Carolina Forest Community Church (Myrtle Beach, South Carolina). In 2004, he began serving as Leadership Development Pastor at Seacoast Church (Charleston, South Carolina) where he served for over six years. In July 2010, Mac Lake joined with West Ridge Church to become the Visionary Architect for the LAUNCH Network. In 2015 Mac begin working with Will Mancini and Auxano to develop the Leadership Pipeline process. He joined Auxano full time in 2018. Mac and his wife, Cindy, live in Charleston, South Carolina and have three children, Brandon, Jordan and Brianna.

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Recent Comments
comment_post_ID); ?> I ask: “How long have you been coming here?” It’s works in every situation.
 
— Russell C
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Excellent information, thank You
 
— Thomas TC Gotcher
 
comment_post_ID); ?> […] source: https://www.visionroom.com/leadership-and-the-power-of-listening/ […]
 
— Bolstering your Leadership Armoury-Part 2- Leadership series – Toyer M–All things testing
 

Clarity Process

Three effective ways to start moving toward clarity right now.

3 Actions to Eliminate Your Team’s Excuses

When your team members are not reproducing new leaders it won’t be long until your leadership pipeline begins to run dry.

It’s not that they don’t know leadership development is important, they just have excuses for not making leadership development a priority. When your team is not reproducing leaders, it’s your role to take the lead and help eliminate the excuses. As long as the excuses remain you will never have a culture of leadership development.

These three actions will help you develop your team as developers, see them engage in leadership development more and result in more new leaders flowing into your leadership pipeline.

Share this video with your team and discuss the questions below.

LINK: https://youtu.be/YDEmHqOv32Q

Discussion Questions

  • What are the most common challenges our team faces in developing leaders? (Make a list on a whiteboard)
  • Which challenge is the biggest for us? What steps can we take to eliminate this excuse?
  • What happens over time when a team continues to make excuses and fails to have a constant flow of new leaders? (Make a list of consequences)
  • How healthy is our leadership pipeline (leadership bench depth). Would you say it’s: On life support, Anemic, Slight fever or Healthy?
  • What action steps do we need to take to overcome excuses and improve the health of our leadership pipeline?

Read more from Mac here; subscribe to more free videos here.


 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mac Lake

Mac Lake

Mac is a pioneering influence in the church planting movement. In 1997, he planted Carolina Forest Community Church (Myrtle Beach, South Carolina). In 2004, he began serving as Leadership Development Pastor at Seacoast Church (Charleston, South Carolina) where he served for over six years. In July 2010, Mac Lake joined with West Ridge Church to become the Visionary Architect for the LAUNCH Network. In 2015 Mac begin working with Will Mancini and Auxano to develop the Leadership Pipeline process. He joined Auxano full time in 2018. Mac and his wife, Cindy, live in Charleston, South Carolina and have three children, Brandon, Jordan and Brianna.

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Recent Comments
comment_post_ID); ?> I ask: “How long have you been coming here?” It’s works in every situation.
 
— Russell C
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Excellent information, thank You
 
— Thomas TC Gotcher
 
comment_post_ID); ?> […] source: https://www.visionroom.com/leadership-and-the-power-of-listening/ […]
 
— Bolstering your Leadership Armoury-Part 2- Leadership series – Toyer M–All things testing
 

Clarity Process

Three effective ways to start moving toward clarity right now.

How to Build a Culture of Gratitude

When shaping a team culture, gratitude may not be the first trait you think of, but it is a vital component for having a healthy team. The way you lead can either build up or break down your team’s sense of gratitude. Most leaders are good at showing appreciation to their team for the work they do, but if you want to increase a spirit of gratitude, it will take more than a simple acknowledgement of a job well done.

Here are three practical things you can do to create a culture of gratitude:

  1. Thank them individually for their unique contribution. Over the next week, think about the unique contributions each one of your team members bring, then find an opportunity to share it with them. It may be a unique spirit they bring to the team because of their personality. It may be a certain talent they have that increases the overall effectiveness of the team. It may be a unique way they shape the team because of a consistently positive attitude they demonstrate. Discover something unique about each one and thank them for it. A well-crafted, sincere and specific thank you will be much more meaningful than a generic “great job.”
  2. Have team members encourage one another. Sometime over the next couple of weeks, use a staff meeting to have everyone go around and say something they appreciate about each individual in the room. By expressing their gratitude publicly, they will feel the weight of that personally. Some may even hear for the first time something positive everyone thinks about them that they were not aware of.
  3. Celebrate the wins. Your team has a mission statement, and you’re working hard toward a specific vision.  Sometimes leaders run so fast and so far ahead that we forget to stop and celebrate. Celebrating the wins and showing the team how their contributions have made a difference can go a long way in making them feel grateful to be a part of such a great team. Accomplishing results is a rewarding feeling, and taking a moment to stop and celebrate those accomplishments will foster a sense of gratitude in your team for the opportunity they have to serve the greater mission of your organization.

Creating a culture of gratitude will take some intentionality, but I promise that the payoff will be well worth the effort.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mac Lake

Mac Lake

Mac is a pioneering influence in the church planting movement. In 1997, he planted Carolina Forest Community Church (Myrtle Beach, South Carolina). In 2004, he began serving as Leadership Development Pastor at Seacoast Church (Charleston, South Carolina) where he served for over six years. In July 2010, Mac Lake joined with West Ridge Church to become the Visionary Architect for the LAUNCH Network. In 2015 Mac begin working with Will Mancini and Auxano to develop the Leadership Pipeline process. He joined Auxano full time in 2018. Mac and his wife, Cindy, live in Charleston, South Carolina and have three children, Brandon, Jordan and Brianna.

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Recent Comments
comment_post_ID); ?> I ask: “How long have you been coming here?” It’s works in every situation.
 
— Russell C
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Excellent information, thank You
 
— Thomas TC Gotcher
 
comment_post_ID); ?> […] source: https://www.visionroom.com/leadership-and-the-power-of-listening/ […]
 
— Bolstering your Leadership Armoury-Part 2- Leadership series – Toyer M–All things testing
 

Clarity Process

Three effective ways to start moving toward clarity right now.

You’re Too Busy to NOT Develop Leaders

You’re busy. Very busy. So busy that you can find no time in your schedule to invest in developing new and existing leaders.

As a result, you’re multiplying the number of hours it takes to get important things done. You’re multiplying the anxieties. And you’re multiplying the number of missed opportunities due to being the bottleneck in your area.

You’re busy. Very busy. But you spend 20% or even 30% of your time developing new and existing leaders.

As a result, you’re multiplying the number of people serving your mission. You’re multiplying the talent level of your team members. You’re multiplying the number of people who know how to identify and recruit potential leaders. And you’re multiplying the number of potential successors who can do what you do.

You’re busy. Very busy. And you’re multiplying. The question is: What are you multiplying?

Dig Deeper:
Video: How to Develop Leaders When You’re Too Busy

> Read more from Mac.


 

Learn more about multiplying leaders – connect with an Auxano Navigator!

 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mac Lake

Mac Lake

Mac is a pioneering influence in the church planting movement. In 1997, he planted Carolina Forest Community Church (Myrtle Beach, South Carolina). In 2004, he began serving as Leadership Development Pastor at Seacoast Church (Charleston, South Carolina) where he served for over six years. In July 2010, Mac Lake joined with West Ridge Church to become the Visionary Architect for the LAUNCH Network. In 2015 Mac begin working with Will Mancini and Auxano to develop the Leadership Pipeline process. He joined Auxano full time in 2018. Mac and his wife, Cindy, live in Charleston, South Carolina and have three children, Brandon, Jordan and Brianna.

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Recent Comments
comment_post_ID); ?> I ask: “How long have you been coming here?” It’s works in every situation.
 
— Russell C
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Excellent information, thank You
 
— Thomas TC Gotcher
 
comment_post_ID); ?> […] source: https://www.visionroom.com/leadership-and-the-power-of-listening/ […]
 
— Bolstering your Leadership Armoury-Part 2- Leadership series – Toyer M–All things testing
 

Clarity Process

Three effective ways to start moving toward clarity right now.

The Big Four Questions of Leadership Development

I’m not much of a handyman, but in my garage is a tool box. There’s nothing fancy inside. Basically, I have a hammer, screwdriver, wrench and tape measure. That’s it. But I can get a lot done with those basic tools.

In my leadership development tool box, I have a basic set of questions I use. They are my go-to tools. Because I love developing leaders, I do have some fancy questions in my tool box too. Questions that I love to pull out and use on occasion to really drive something deep into someone’s thinking. There are some I like to use that I know will shake them up and make people think at a significant level.

But the truth is, leaders can get the development job done with just these 4 basic questions:

  1. WHAT DID YOU DO WELL?

    This question helps you and the leader you’re developing to have a better understanding of the current baseline of their strengths and how to maximize them.

  2. WHAT COULD YOU HAVE DONE BETTER?

    This question helps you and the leader see their gaps and learning opportunities.

  3. WHAT WILL YOU DO DIFFERENTLY?

    This question pushes a leader to develop action steps that will help them grow in their leadership skill. Identifying gaps without identifying a plan will not produce growth.

  4. WHAT DID YOU LEARN FROM THIS EXPERIENCE?

    This question enables the leader to articulate critical leadership lessons they’re gaining from their experience.

There are other more fancy questions you can use, but to be honest, you can do a great job building a leader with just these 4 basic questions.

Additional Resources:
Video: 4 Habits that Develop Your Credibility as a Trainer

> Read more from Mac.


 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mac Lake

Mac Lake

Mac is a pioneering influence in the church planting movement. In 1997, he planted Carolina Forest Community Church (Myrtle Beach, South Carolina). In 2004, he began serving as Leadership Development Pastor at Seacoast Church (Charleston, South Carolina) where he served for over six years. In July 2010, Mac Lake joined with West Ridge Church to become the Visionary Architect for the LAUNCH Network. In 2015 Mac begin working with Will Mancini and Auxano to develop the Leadership Pipeline process. He joined Auxano full time in 2018. Mac and his wife, Cindy, live in Charleston, South Carolina and have three children, Brandon, Jordan and Brianna.

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Recent Comments
comment_post_ID); ?> I ask: “How long have you been coming here?” It’s works in every situation.
 
— Russell C
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Excellent information, thank You
 
— Thomas TC Gotcher
 
comment_post_ID); ?> […] source: https://www.visionroom.com/leadership-and-the-power-of-listening/ […]
 
— Bolstering your Leadership Armoury-Part 2- Leadership series – Toyer M–All things testing
 

Clarity Process

Three effective ways to start moving toward clarity right now.

Developing Leaders Even When No One Is Ready

Have you ever looked around your organization for a new leader only to discover that nobody is ready? That can be the most discouraging feeling, but it doesn’t have to be your reality.

Today, I want to talk to you about three ideas you can use to develop those leaders who aren’t quite ready. Before we dive into these ideas, I want to share a concept with you. For those of us who have been in ministry, and I’ve been in ministry for over 30 years now, we know that season of the year, around August and January, when you sort of get sick to your stomach because it’s a new season of ministry ramping up. You look around, you go, “Oh, no, we need more leaders. We don’t have enough leaders,” and it always seems to be that time of year you get that feeling.

It’s also that time of year you start to look around for new leaders to put in those vacant positions. You’re looking around the organization and you go, “Well, he’s not ready. He’s not ready. She’s not ready. Oh, there’s somebody that’s ready,” and we pick that person up and we put them in the leadership position. Then, we go to our senior leader and say, “Hey, I just developed a new leader,” but, really, you didn’t. You just did leadership placement.

What I want you to understand, there’s a big difference between leadership development and leadership placement. I’m afraid that the local church today has really defaulted to a lot of leadership placement rather than leadership development. What I want to do is … To solve this problem, we have to start developing leaders who aren’t ready, so I want to give you three ideas that we can dive into that will help you begin to build those leaders who aren’t quite ready. Stay tuned until the end because I’m going to share a fourth bonus tip, as well. Let’s dive in.

Idea number one is look at people’s potential. See people for what they can be, not just what they are. I think, a lot of times, we just get comfortable looking at people as they are, rather than taking the time to imagine what they could be 12 months from now, 18 months from now. That could make a huge difference, if we begin to look at their potential and imagine what they could be if we develop them over time.

I think it’s interesting when you look at the life of Jesus. He recruited some men who weren’t quite ready. Think about it. In Matthew 9, he approached Matthew, who was a tax collector. He was despised by people. What was he doing at the time? He was collecting taxes. Jesus walked up to him and said, “Hey, come follow me,” and Matthew did. It’s fascinating because Jesus looked at him not for what he was but for what he could be. Jesus did the same thing with Peter and Andrew. He walked up to them as they were fishing. These were uneducated fisherman, and he said, “Come follow me.”

Now, he didn’t take these men and immediately throw them into leadership. No, he began to walk with them. He began to disciple them. He was teaching them how to pray, how to have faith. He was teaching them the basics of the faith before he really started developing them as leaders, but he took a risk on people. He saw them for their potential and began to make an investment in them. Look around your church. Look around your organization. Who is it that you need to take a risk on?

Idea number two is look for willingness not just readiness. A lot of times, what we do is we look around the organization and we’re looking for that new leader who is ready to plug in, a plug and play leader, but they’re just not ready. We have to learn to look for willingness, not just readiness. I will never forget when I learned this lesson. I was leading a small group … This is back when we planted a church. I was leading a small group and, after small group one night, this young man named Roger came up to me and he looked at me and he said, “Mac, I want to do what you do.” I said, “What do you mean you want to do what I do?” He said, “I want to learn to lead a small group the way you lead a small group.” Man, he said, “Man, we just feel like family, the way you lead discussion and the way you really network us together and connect us together and bond us together and help us really grow in our faith. I want to learn to do what you do.”

Now, the whole time Roger was telling me this, I was looking at him and, in my mind, I was thinking, “You can’t do what I do. You’re not ready,” but he was so persistent. He wouldn’t give up. He just kept pushing me, saying, “Would you teach me? Would you teach me?” Finally, I said, “Okay, Roger. Here’s what we’re going to do. I want you to show up to small group 15 minutes early next week and plan on staying 15 minutes late.” He did. Next week, he shows up 15 minutes early. We go upstairs in the room over the garage and I said, “Okay, Roger. One of the first things you have to learn as a small group leader is you have to learn how to build a sense of biblical community among the small group. Here’s how you do that,” and I shared five or six things on how to do that. Then, I said, “Okay, let’s go downstairs. Everybody is about to come in. I want you to watch me do this tonight.”

We went through group that night and then, that evening, after everybody left, he and I went back upstairs. We sat down and I said, “Okay. Tell me what you saw. What did you see me do right and then what did you see me do that I could have done better?” We sat there and we had a 15, 20 minute discussion about that. Next week, Roger shows up early again. I said, “Okay, this week, Roger, I’m going to teach you how to lead an icebreaker question. Here’s why icebreaker questions are important and here’s how you lead one. Watch me lead it.” Then, that night, after group, we went upstairs, took 15, 20 minutes. We debriefed it. Then, the following week I gave him the icebreaker question to ask the group. Again, went upstairs, debriefed it to see what he did well and what he could do better. We just did this week after week after week until, finally, next thing you know, Roger was ready to lead his own group.

Here’s what I learned from that. We have to learn to look for willingness, not just readiness, because, when we only look for readiness, we’re only going to do leadership placement rather than leadership development.

Idea number three is know what you’re looking for. If you’re not looking for readiness, then what are you looking for? I get this question more than any other when I’m working churches through the leadership pipeline process. People come up and always ask me this. What do you look for in a potential leader? What do you look for in a potential leader?

Here are three traits that I look for when I’m looking for a potential leader, and I call it TIP, T-I-P. First, T is teachable. Teachable. Is the individual teachable or do they act like they already know it all and have it all together? I’m looking for somebody that’s really teachable. I is integrity. Integrity. Is this a person that I respect, that others respect? Is it a person other people follow because they’re a person of character? P is passion. Are they passionate or are they passive? I’m going to tell you something. If you can find somebody that has a little bit of passion, you can teach them anything. When you’re looking for a potential leader, look for these three things, teachability, integrity, and passion. That’s somebody you can take some time and invest in. That’s the type of person you can begin to do leadership development with, rather than just leadership placement.

Okay, I said if you’d stick around til the end, I’d give you a bonus idea. Here’s the bonus idea, and it is my favorite. Give task before you give title. So often, when we are looking to fill a position and we’re identifying people that can fill that position, we measure the people against the full scope of that position. We can’t do that because we look at them and we go, “Well, they’re not ready to do that. They can’t do that entire job.” Well, of course they can’t. They’ve never done it before. We can baby step them there by giving them tasks along the way, before we give them the title. You give them responsibilities related to that role under your mentorship.

For example, let’s say that you needed to have a brand new children’s director. You find somebody that you think has the potential, you could develop them there. You can’t give them the title yet because they’re not quite ready for that, but you can give them task. For example, you could say, “Hey, I’m going to be recruiting a new children’s leader. I want you to come with me and follow me and watch me recruit a new team member.” Then, a few weeks later, “Hey, I want you to recruit somebody new to the team.” Then, “Hey, I want you to watch me lead one of our team meetings.” Then, “The next team meeting, I want you to assist me. Not lead the whole thing, I just want you to assist me in leading part of that team meeting.” Then, another time, “Hey, sit down. I want you to help me plan out this next quarter of activities for children’s ministry because planning is such an important competency related to this ministry.”They sit down, they help you do that. Then, next time, you can give them the opportunity to plan that. Here’s what you’re doing. By giving them task before you give them title, you are baby stepping them into the competencies they need in order to really lead in that position.

Thanks for reading and watching.

> Check out Mac’s videos here.


 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mac Lake

Mac Lake

Mac is a pioneering influence in the church planting movement. In 1997, he planted Carolina Forest Community Church (Myrtle Beach, South Carolina). In 2004, he began serving as Leadership Development Pastor at Seacoast Church (Charleston, South Carolina) where he served for over six years. In July 2010, Mac Lake joined with West Ridge Church to become the Visionary Architect for the LAUNCH Network. In 2015 Mac begin working with Will Mancini and Auxano to develop the Leadership Pipeline process. He joined Auxano full time in 2018. Mac and his wife, Cindy, live in Charleston, South Carolina and have three children, Brandon, Jordan and Brianna.

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