How Church Leaders Can Get Healthy for the New Year


I’ve done some training under Patrick Lencioni. Patrick is an established organizational consultant and has authored multiple books focused on helping organizations reach their full potential. Although his content is written for the Corporate World, church leaders can gain from his applications. He has a theory that I have tested and found to be true – he says that:

All successful organizations share two qualities: they are smart and they are healthy.

An organization demonstrates that it is smart by developing intelligent strategies, marketing plans, product features, and financial models.

An organization demonstrates that it is healthy by eliminating politics and confusion resulting in higher morale, lower turnover and higher productivity.

Over the past several years I have applied this smart and healthy theory to churches and church leaders that I have worked with as a consultant. I have found that the churches and church leaders who consistently create healthy and smart practices seem to be more dynamic, thriving, alive and productive.

Here are just a few of the smart and healthy practices that I have observed:

Successful church leaders have organizational clarity. The teams of smart and healthy ministries are intentional, thoughtful and aggressive when communicating and make sure their actions match their words. They also understand that –Flexibility is the antagonist of clarity. Too much flexibility in an organization creates fuzziness.

Successful church leaders embrace a culture that leverages relationships. Smart and healthy churches and church leaders embed trust and truth into the culture. Game playing is not tolerated. Church leaders establish trust by probing to understand how their team is really doing, and they divulge information about their own lives.

Successful church leaders understand that “people trust truth”.  Even though it is much easier to avoid telling the hard truths to people, it is their responsibility and the most God honoring thing to do. Church leaders who really love people and want them to grow are able to lead honest bottom line conversations.

Is your church smart and healthy? Would your staff and volunteers agree with your answer? Where could you improve?