Strengthen Your Senior Leadership Team


We are all about building great teams. So when our good friends from Leadership Network told us about their new team assessment tool, we were excited and ready to pass it along to our readers. Below is an article from Warren Bird about this new (and free) tool.

Read it. Take the survey. Strengthen your ministry team:

It’s no secret: Churches are more complex than ever.  As a result, key jobs in the church are more demanding than ever.  Pastoring requires more specialized skills than ever.  And the need to develop church leaders is as crucial as ever.As a result, many churches have adopted Senior Leadership Teams to address these challenges. Great Senior Leadership Teams involve more people in church leadership functions and share the leadership burden, bring experts face-to-face to strategize, and facilitate leadership development.   In fact, Leadership Network’s recent “Team Collaboration Report” noted:

The structure is changing from a single leader calling all the shots to flattened-hierarchy leadership teams that share crucial strategic and directional responsibilities…Steps to broaden the leadership platform [have resulted in] leadership teams with multiple strategic and directional leaders who not only use their gifts, abilities and varied backgrounds to oversee important facets of decision making and execution; they also share the load for visioning, strategic direction and communication.

However, just slapping the “team” term on a group of senior church leaders doesn’t make it a true team.   But there are many things you can do to help your senior church leadership group become a real team that offers outstanding spiritual and strategic leadership to your church.  Based on Ryan’s two-and-a-half year study of one church’s transition to a senior leadership team and the current literature on senior leadership team effectiveness*, we know that…

Great senior leadership teams:

1. Know, believe in, and pursue a clear, compelling, and consequential purpose distinct from the church’s overall mission. 

2. Identify and focus on the crucial tasks it needs to accomplish (such as establishing vision, determining strategy, building capacity, etc.) and give the rest away to other individuals and groups.

3. Are comprised of persons who possess, in a balance with others, the needed skills, experience, conviction, and perspective to accomplish the team’s purpose. Check out Tony Morgan’s postabout this very issue.

4. Utilize a solid team structure that keeps the team as small as possible, gets meaningful tasks on the agenda and trivial matters off the agenda, establishes healthy meeting norms, and holds team members accountable to them.

5. Access and utilize important resources necessary for the team to do its work, such as:

      • meaningful information,
      • educational opportunities to develop not only functional skills but also team/collaboration skills,
      • reward systems that reward team-level performance as well as individual effort,
      • time, settings, and material resources that enable the team to collaborative effectively in formal and informal settings, and
      • coaching (not team building) to grow into a great team.

Clearly, developing a great senior church leadership team requires thought, intentionality, and effort.

To help you strengthen your team, we have a free assessment tool for you. It's an amazing, FREE, limited time offer where your team gets feedback, first compared to national averages, and then later against a norm of other churches.