Top 5 Posts of 2017 (at Mid-Year)

Somehow the first half of 2017 is now behind us. As we enter the second half of the year, I thought it would be interesting to see what posts my readers viewed most often. Among posts published in 2017, the top five (by view count) are Christian Alternative Facts Our Search for a Church is Over! The Immigrants Creed Review: Days of Awe and Wonder Search for a Church: Attending New Member Classes Interestingly, many older posts continue to be viewed quite frequently.  So far in Read More …

Humble Leadership

Humility is hard to talk about, and harder still to embody. Most people don't quit a job; most people quit their boss. Humble leaders are needed as much and perhaps more now than ever. Humility & Effectiveness In a recent Harvard Business Review article Margarita Mayo, Professor of Leadership and Organizational Behavior at IE Business School in Madrid, noted that humble leaders are more effective leaders.  She writes Humble leaders improve the performance of a company in the Read More …

Top Posts of 2015 (Jan-Jun)

In a few days the second half of the year will begin.  The most popular posts here on So What Faith so far this year (based on total number of views of posts published in 2015) are Effective Leaders Ask for Feedback, World Religions in 2050, Toward Church Renewal, From Mainline to Sideline to Oldline, and Top 10 Faith Enriching Books. Statistical Curiosities The list includes two posts from January, two from February, and one from April.   Each post was tagged with a primary Read More …

Leaders Clear Obstacles

Dave Odom, Executive Director of Leadership Education at Duke Divinity School, recently explained an important yet often underdeveloped and under-appreciated aspect of leadership: clearing obstacles.  After leaders set vision and motivate people to move toward that vision, they must also be intentional about assisting people in moving forward by removing or helping to remove obstacles that emerge in their paths. Odom explains: In my experience, the senior management of larger organizations Read More …

Effective Leaders Ask for Feedback

Over the years I have encountered people in functional leadership roles who discouraged feedback, those who tolerated feedback, and others who welcomed and valued feedback to such a degree they were intentional about seeking it from a wide variety of constituents on a regular basis.  Unfortunately I have had both bosses and mentors suggest that while there is a role for feedback it should be limited as excessive requests suggest that one lacks vision and the drive needed to move oneself and Read More …

Starting Well

On his first day as the CEO of Microsoft, Satya Nadella sent an e-mail to all employees that asked and answered several key questions: Who am I? Why am I here? Why are we here? What do we do next? So What? Starting well is essential whether leading a multi-billion dollar business, a congregation, or a team/group/committee.   Nadella's questions are ones that church leaders need to address.  While doing so on the first day of a new position may not always be possible, doing so Read More …

Effective Church Leaders

Justin Lathrop - founder of Helpstaff.me (now Vanderbloemen Search), Oaks School of Leadership, and MinistryCoach.tv - recently shared a top ten list of characteristics of effective church leaders that was created by Hillsong Church for its staff members.  That list includes: being a can-do person, delegating but never dumping, having an attractive spirituality, serving with gladness, and empowering others. So What? Expectations matter.  When your nominating team/committee Read More …

Benefits of Church Task Forces

In addition to standing Boards and Committees, many congregations form task forces or other temporary working groups to manage specific projects.  Jenni Catron, Executive Director of Cross Point Church (Nashville, TN), recently shared a list of some of the positive outcomes of these temporary teams.  Her list includes: the hierarchy is flattened, new relationships are formed, and great leaders emerge. So What? While Boards and Committees have important roles to play in the life of Read More …

Leadership Archetypes

Manfred F.R. Kets de Vries, Distinguished Professor of Leadership Development and Organizational Change at INSEAD, recently shared his eight leadership archetypes on the Harvard Business Review blog. The strategist: leadership as a game of chess. The change-catalyst: leadership as a turnaround activity. The transactor: leadership as deal making. The builder: leadership as an entrepreneurial activity. The innovator: leadership as creative idea generation. The processor: leadership Read More …

Doing Things a New Way

Brian Dodd works for the Rocket Company, an organization committed to helping churches increase weekly giving and pastors preach better sermons.  Recently, he listed 15 reasons why people don't need to do things the way they have always been done (based on a video featuring Kevin Kelley of the Pulaski Academy).  Included on the list are I've done my research, I am continually learning, the current situation calls for something different, I think differently than others, and I asked Read More …