If you’re a senior pastor, you’re the point leader for the local church. Preaching is what most people think you do, but leadership is critical.
Here are some common leadership mistakes.
1. Moving the goal posts.
Your church needs to know the win. If you change the definition of a win too often and without clear communication, you’ll frustrate your team. Great leaders keep their church focused on the clear and stated goal.
2. Failing to communicate expectations.
Senior Pastors are the Chief Clarity Officers for the church and it’s so important to clarify expectations for everyone on your team. People can’t succeed if they don’t know their role or their goal.
3. Creating policies to deal with unique situations.
If you have a unique situation, you don’t need another church policy. A conversation will do.
4. Delegating tasks but not authority.
If you only delegate tasks, you’ll have a few people who will get stuff done, but if you delegate authority and provide coaching along the way, you will develop leaders and make disciples.
5. Searching for the All-Star instead of developing your bench.
One more staff member is not going to reach your community for Christ. Making disciples and building leaders takes time and patience. Develop the people God has already placed in your church.
6. Pursuing the result apart from the process.
In a results-only culture, people will do crazy things to hit numbers and reach goals. As the leader, you’ve got to care about the process not just the result. If you get the process and the system right, results usually follow. If you focus on results only, you create a tense environment where most things are not good enough.
7. Squashing ideas that aren’t yours.
One of the great tests of leadership is how excited you can get about other people’s ideas. Free your people to make decisions and celebrate their good ideas. Everybody is smarter than somebody.
8. Implementing ideas apart from your overall strategy.
Don’t go to a conference, come home, and try to implement something that works somewhere else. Great ideas that don’t fit with your overall strategy as a church will do a lot more harm than good. Not only will they not work, they will set you back.
9. Evaluating on feeling and not fact.
When you talk about programs, church services and ministries, move the conversation from “That was good” or “I liked it” to facts. How effective is that ministry at accomplishing your stated purpose? How well did that big event really work based on real metrics?
10. Only learning from people like you.
Great pastors and leaders can learn from anyone, even people who disagree or come from different tribes. If you’re stuck in your leadership, broaden your base and reach out to new kinds of people.
Do you want a powerful staff meeting? Print out this list and ask these questions in your team and have an honest conversation about leadership.
The Ultimate Leadership Development Tool
One thing we’ve noticed about leaders in the church is they typically crave training. Leaders love opportunities to get better and develop their skills. Yet too many churches don’t provide any leadership training to their people.
This resource will help you:
- Learn how to lead yourself because it starts with you!
- Lead others so your church can thrive on strong leadership for decades
- Lead projects so nothing or no one gets lost in translation
With Team Training, you can invite some of the top leadership coaches right into your team meetings. Or you can share the videos with your staff, elders and leaders and they can watch on their own schedule.