Okay, so “OBSESSING” is a strong word. I get it. And it may not even be the right word to use… but after I read “The FOUR OBSESSIONS of an Extraordinary Executive” by Patrick Lencioni… I just wanted to use that word. I don’ t know.. maybe I should be OBSESSING about these 4 disciplines, because they are CRUCIAL to building and maintaining a great student ministry. And the beauty about these four disciplines is this: It doesn’t matter what size of youth ministry you are leading… they are important. If you want to go deeper about these… check out the book:
Here are the 4 Disciplines of a Healthy Organization:
1. Build & Maintain a Cohesive Leadership Team. The first Discipline is learning to get people around you, on your team, that will help you lead. One of the main reasons that our ministries, businesses, etc… don’t grow is because of us. We hinder the health of our organizations because we operate like everything rises or falls based upon our personality, knowledge, or leadership ability. The truth of the matter is that we all have some kind of leadership cap or lid (thanks John Maxwell), and we will never be able to take our ministry beyond that lid. We can, however, if we learn this discipline… because now we have a team helping us lead who all have different leadership lids. Building a team is CRUCIAL in your growth as a leader, in your ministry’s growth, and will actually help you LAST as a leader.
2. Create Organizational Clarity. Make sure that everyone on your team and in your ministry knows exactly what you are doing and why you are doing it. It’s not enough to have a slick purpose statement or vision or values… everyone on your team needs to be clear on what they are and they need to DRIVE your team to accomplish what you have set out to accomplish in your ministry.
3. Over Communicate Organizational Clarity. It is possible to build a great team and achieve organizational clarity… only to flounder because we forgot that we need to communicate it to those who are following. As leaders, communication is A HUGE PRIORITY. The reason that our plans don’t come to fruition most of the time is not because the plan was flawed… it is because we did not take the necessary step of OVER COMMUNICATING it to those who need to hear it. Saying it once is not enough. I loved the way he put it in the book: REPETITION, SIMPLICITY, MULTIPLE MEDIUMS, & CASCADING MESSAGES. That is how you over communicate.
4. Reinforce Organizational Clarity through Human Systems. It’s not just about communication… it’s about building and maintaining and reinforcing your purpose, vision, mission, values, etc… through systems that are easy to follow and that make the “WHY” relevant. If “Discipleship through community” is a CORE VALUE of yours… it’s not enough to say it over and over again… you need to reinforce that value by putting a small group system in place that allows that value to be shown.
These 4 Disciplines seem like they should make sense… but a lot of times we forget to be OBSESSED with them, and it affects our ministry and our leadership. What I have noticed is that student pastors who become “obsessed” with these disciplines tend to have very healthy youth ministries. WHY? because they have a team that is dedicated to clearly accomplish something and they over communicate what it is they are trying to accomplish using several mediums and systems. EVERYONE KNOWS WHAT THE WIN IS!