The best organizations, including churches, aren’t run by one celebrity leader. Upon closer examination, you’ll find they’re fueled by teams of great people.
Sometimes you’ll see high-profile churches driven by locally or nationally famous personalities. Their churches are usually referred to not by the name of the church but by the name of the person. “Oh, that’s (insert name)’s church,” people say. To be clear, they’re not inserting the name of Jesus. And too often these same churches experience disproportionate dysfunction behind the leader’s polished public image.
The best leaders don’t think of themselves as “the boss” of their minions. Rather, the best leaders surround themselves with other great leaders and team members.
They’re not threatened by those who may actually exceed their own abilities. Instead, they’re truly thrilled to see all team members grow, and take on greater responsibility and visibility.
And, like Jesus, the best leaders don’t hoard power. They give it away.
The best leaders nurture an atmosphere of genuine humility (one of the Four Acts of Love described in Why Nobody Wants to Go to Church Anymore). They understand deeply that God has not confined his wisdom and vision to one, but has generously spread it throughout the Body. They tend to listen more than they speak.
Likewise, the best associate leaders, departmental leaders, and team members exhibit genuine humility. They excel–not to become Number One, but to elevate the success of the mission. They accept and celebrate the concept of the Body, in which each part plays an essential role.
Brian Bennett, former second banana at a large church, interviewed numerous second-in-command people in various fields. He discovered a number of practices that made them successful in their vital roles. He shares his findings in today’s Holy Soup Podcast, hosted by my associate Mikal Keefer. Give it a listen here: