Why are a small percentage of pastors (about 10%) adept at leading plateaued and declining churches into renewal and growth while most are not? Can other pastors lead more effectively by learning from their colleagues?
Those are the questions we’ve been studying the last several years.
In this groundbreaking research using The Birkman Method we’ve identified many important, statistically significant differences between turnaround pastors and non-turnaround pastors. “Statistically significant” means our findings are reliable ““ they’re consistent and reproducible ““ and valid ““ we’ve measured what we intended to measure. A professional statistician confirms our findings.
Here’s a taste of what will be in the book.
One important difference is in the way pastors convey their thoughts, wishes and ideas. The most effective leaders are direct; they “tell” in situations where other pastors prefer to “suggest.” Although turnaround pastors are gracious, everyone knows exactly what they think or want. Nonturnaround pastors may think they’ve been clear, but they “pull the punch” and leave people in doubt. Its not just that they are “extroverts.” In Birkman terminology, they have a higher Authority score.
Another important difference is how pastors respond to the unexpected. Turnaround pastors relish variety; they’re quick to seize sudden opportunities. Their colleagues find it harder to shift gears because they prefer an orderly, predictable work environment that lets them focus on one thing at a time.
Our upcoming book will identify and explain all the behaviors, needs and interests that typify those whom God has naturally hardwired to lead plateaued and declining churches to new life. It is filled with practical coaching tips, guidance for personal and professional development, and tools that will prepare any pastor for effective turnaround leadership.
Which leads to the second question we’ve been researching. We’re delighted to report that nonturnaround pastors who employ the best practices (identified in our research) CAN become effective turnaround pastors.
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