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How to Regain Trust

All of us fail from time to time. Sometimes we fail the expectations of others and that breaks trust. It’s so difficult to rebuild trust!

However, here are five steps John Maxwell recommends to rebuild trust (Leadershift, page 159):

1. Fully acknowledge what you have done wrong

2. Explain exactly what you are going to do to make it right

3. Give the offended person the opportunity to share their perspective and add anything else to what you just shared

4. Do the hard work necessary to fix the problem.

5. Follow up with them to confirm the problem was fixed to their satisfaction.

This takes a huge amount of humility and high value to the relationship.

I think these are worth writing down, remembering and applying to our life!

If you enjoy this blog please refer it to others.

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Church Planting, Evangelism, Family, Leadership, Missions, Personal Development, Uncategorized

Working with a Team, Part 2

Teamwork 2

This is Part 2 from my book Planting and Growing Life-Giving Churches.  This lesson not only applies to churches, but in every team situation.  You may find this and other resources in the Menu of this blog.

In our next lesson we will discuss the process to train others in more detail, but here are some big points to remember:

  • Communicate the goal of what you want them to do
  • If you can show them what you want them to do it’s better because people remember more if they see something
  • Write down clearly the goal and procedures for what you want them to do
  • Write down who their supervisor it. Who do they report to/?
  • Write down exactly what you want them to do.
  • Write down when and what you want them to report back to you or their supervisor

All of this is a lot of work, but it has positive results because we our team members need goals, boundaries and systems to produce good results.  We train them thoroughly and teach them to train others and we have good results from one generation to another!

If you lack the skills, ability and experience to train your leaders, you, as the senior leader, but find resources to help you train them.  If you don’t know how to do an excellent youth or children or women’s ministry, find someone who has skills in those areas and ask or pay them to train your team.

Have high standards for your team.

“Followers do in excess what leaders do in moderation.”  This means that if the leader is a little unorganized, his followers are much unorganized. If the leader makes some compromises with sin the followers will make many compromises with sin.  If the leader has low standards for holiness, work ethics, quality of service and level of quality the followers will have even lower standards, still.

Not always, but often, followers do not rise up to the level of their leader.  They are always below the level of the leader.  Sometimes a follower wants to rise to a new level but he sees that his leader is content to stay at his level.  Sometimes that follower will leave to find a new mentor that will help him experience his full potential and rise to a new level.  As the level of the leader raises the level of the follower rises, too.  This is one aspect of what John Maxwell calls “The Law of the Lid.”

            You should have high standards for your team:

  • Integrity
  • Leadership skills
  • Management skills
  • Quality of their program (children, youth, English lessons, etc.)

I encourage you to keep the standard high.  If the standard is a Level 10, maybe we might make it to a Level 8.  But if the standard is a level 5, we might make it to a Level 3.

Take your team to churches or ministries or organizations or businesses that have the high standard that you want.  Help them to connect with the director of that ministry and learn from him.  Let him see the ministry or office or church meeting or whatever you want them to improve in.  It’s difficult to grow if we have never seen nor don’t have the experience in that ministry.

Put the right person in the right place.

In our “Life as a Servant” Class we have two lessons on Discovering Your Spiritual SHAPE.  It is very, very important to put a person in a ministry or role that is according to their spiritual gifts, heart motivation, personality and skills.  A person might have a passion to help in children’s ministry but lack the skills.  A person might have a passion to be a cell group leader but lacks people skills because of his personality.

Often we must move a person from one ministry to another ministry until he discovers the right place for him to serve.  It’s important to tell people this before we put them into a ministry.  We want them to experience their highest potential.  Therefore, we try to find the right place for them to serve according to their spiritual SHAPE.

Humble yourself and admit when you’re wrong.

Here is an important key to building a team:  If you are wrong, humble yourself and go the team and confess your fault and ask them to forgive you.

Every team leader makes mistakes. Sometimes we choose wrongly.  Sometimes we make a mistake with our words or ideas.  Sometimes we do something that hurts others.  We must go to them immediately and confess our mistake and ask them to forgive us. If you do not do this you will destroy your own team.  If you do it, you will become a model of a Christian leader and your team will grow closer together.

Conclusion

Your team of helpers and leaders are your priority.  You must train them to be a disciple and servant-leader.  You must help them obtain the skills they need and resources they need to fulfill the ministry you ask them to do.  This is your job as a leader.  If you can’t do it you must find someone else to help you, but you must lead the way in training your team and having good relationships with your team.

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Family, Leadership, Missions, Personal Development, Uncategorized

Changing Lives is What Matters

Transformation

I love information and communication – I like to teach, write and share with others.  I enjoy listening and reading communication, too.  You know, there are many different reasons to communicate – humor, news and general information, history, personal stories and biographies – all of these are interesting and I like to absorb them all.

I’ve been a teacher, public speaker, author and mentor for many, many years.  Somewhere along my journey I was enlightened.  It occurred to me that there is a place for transferring information, but for me, I wanted to leave a lasting impression.  I actually wanted to help people solve problems and move forward on their own journey.

I’ve listened to comedians and have just rolled in tears at their humor.  I’ve listened to such sad stories I couldn’t sleep at night.  I’ve also listened to many, many lectures that have bored me to death!  As well as sermons in church which are inspirational, but I didn’t really walk away with anything tangible.

Somewhere in my journey I decided to try to be sensitive to people’s needs so I can really help them with what I say and write.  I value people’s time.  If they come to hear me I want them to take away something that will be helpful for them.

Take a look at the link to my menu on this Blogsite and see three PowerPoint PDFs I’ve created in a short class I taught on How to be an Effective Communicator.  Leadership Resources ENG

Here are a few mindset shifts for a communicator:

  1.  It’s not about you – it’s about them.  It’s not about if they like you, if they applaud you or if they invite you back or how good you felt about your presentation  You are on the platform for your listener’s sake, not your own
  2. John Maxwell says “Success is not about a standing ovation – it’s about people walking out with a battle plan”  Exactly!  Give them something they can take home and put into practice.
  3. “More is Less.”  Don’t overwhelm them with information. I hate to be a bearer of bad news, but statistics show they won’t remember most of what you said anyway!  Make is simple and make it short.  Visit this link in my menu and open the PDF document – Preaching to Change Lives.  Look at the research from Waterloo University on how long people remember your lesson!  Preaching to Change Lives
  4. If your listeners can’t relate to what you’re saying, don’t say it!  Living as a missionary in Asia I’ve heard so many Western Preachers and Teachers use illustrations, stories and points that are totally irrelevant to those to whom they are speaking.  The Number 1 rule of a public speaker is “Know your audience.”  Make sure they can grasp what you want them to receive so it’s actually useful to them.

So much more can be said, but let’s leave it at this:  We have the opportunity to take someone’s valuable time which represents their life – so let’s honor that time with a presentation that is really useful for them.  Something they can take to their home, school, church, organization or business and apply it immediately.  

Pastor Rick Warren teaches a very worthwhile seminar on Preaching with Purpose.  He brings out that most lectures or sermons are mostly “not so useful information” and the final few minutes are how to apply it. He has flipped it around and spends a short time on the introductory remarks and gets right to the “how to do it” part.  I like that and have tried to follow that pattern too.

I wish you great success in being a World-Changer by changing people in your world one person at a time!

If this blog has been helpful to you, please share it with others.

Also, check out my YouTube site for short videos on leadership and other subjects:  Mentoring Growing Leaders YouTube

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Church Planting, Evangelism, Family, Leadership, Missions, Personal Development, Uncategorized

Working with a Team, Part 1

Group of happy young  business people in a meeting at office

This is from a book I wrote Planting and Growing Life-Giving Churches.  I wrote it for a Cambodian Context (where I live and work, but it’s applicable in most situations.  you can find this book and other resources in the Menu to this Blog.

You, as a leader, will be working with people to establish the Kingdom of God in your area.  God has chosen to work through people.  However, I can tell you that working with people is not easy.  People have different motives, different understanding, different goals, different personalities and different levels of knowledge. It’s for this reason we already taught a lesson on Developing People Skills.  I suggest strongly that you make it a priority to study about people so you can work together with a team to lead God’s church to success.

You as a senior leader will be working with a team to lead the church.  You will work with Elders and Deacons.  Many of these helpers or leaders will be volunteers.  No one forces a volunteer to help you. They are not your staff, not your employee, and don’t receive a salary from you.  If you are nasty or don’t work well with them they will leave.  The same for staff.  You must know clearly how to work together with a leadership team and a helper team.

Below are several points that I recommend from my experience and from God’s Word.

Exodus 18:1-27

Value and honor your team.

Do not think that you are the great man or woman of God.  You may have more Bible knowledge and experience than your leadership or helper team, but you are only one person.  You need others to work together with you to accomplish the purpose God has for his church in your area.  Please understand that God has put men and women with you that have experiences that are different from you.  They have knowledge that is different from you.  You need them and they need you.  Please consider your team members of high value to God and the work he wants you to do together.

Give opportunities for your team to experience something new. Ask them what is in their heart to do?  Ask them if there is something else in the church they would like to try without abandoning their current role.  Ask or allow them to do something different from time to time.  Ask them how they feel doing something new.

Be transparent with your team. Do not lie and do not keep secrets from them.  Your team wants to know you trust them.  You don’t have to tell them everything, but share with them your future plans and strategy so they can help you pray about it, raise funds for it and help it to be accomplished.  Be honest when you evaluate them, too, sharing their weaknesses and how they can improve.  Do this by love and not criticism.

Write a short note to your team members. From time to time write a short note to a team member thanking them or commending them for something they did.  Identify a positive character quality for them such as punctuality, faithfulness, trustworthiness, initiative, honesty, neatness.  When you identify these positive character qualities they will try even more to do them again.

 Tell them you appreciate them. Thank them for what they do.  Praise them in front of others.  Tell them face-to-face that you appreciate them for what they just did or what they have been doing.

 Ask about their family and pray for their family. Know the name of their spouse, their children and brothers and parents. Ask about the welfare of their family often.  Pray together for their family often.

 Consider their safety. Show concern if they are working in an unsafe environment or have to travel long distances.  Do what you are able to keep them safe and healthy in their work situation.

 Give them food. Food gives energy and is a way to show you appreciate someone.  From time to time give them a coupon for a restaurant or bring a snack to work or have a small party.

 Listen to them. Show them value by listening to their ideas and try to implement their ideas if possible.  Listen to their complaints and really consider if you need to change something they are complaining about.  Thank them for sharing their feelings.  Tell them you will consider their ideas and complaints an if possible implement them, but you cannot promise anything.  You are the boss and senior leader.

 Give them rewards. Rewards are not just money, but a coupon or a certificate to honor them for their work.  Remember their birthdays and the date they started work with you.

 Part 2 to this lesson is coming up next.  

If you like these blogs, please check out the resources in the Menu and at my YouTube Site:  Mentoring Growing Leaders and share it with others.

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Family, Leadership, Missions, Personal Development, Uncategorized

How to Confront with Love

Confronting in Love

(John Maxwell Leadership Bible, page 1453)

If you’re in leadership – family, church, school, business or organization – eventually you will have to confront someone about a problem.  I’ll confess that I hate confrontation, but they are a necessary part of organizational health, as well as just living a healthy life.

Here’s a checklist from John Maxwell on how to confront with love:  (You can unpack them further yourself.)

  1.  Check your motive.  Your goal should be to help, not humiliate.
  2.  Make sure the issue is worthy of criticism.  Is it really worth it?  Be careful where you draw your Battle Lines.
  3. Be specific.  If you have something to say about an attitude, words or how they work, be specific.  Don’t just give a general criticism – you must name the issue(s) or you can’t expect change.
  4. Don’t devalue the person.  Don’t attack them, but the problem.  Find something positive about them as well as the negative issue.
  5. Make sure your standards are realistic and you have communicated expectation.  We can’t blame someone for something that we haven’t made clear from the beginning.
  6. Make the solution clear. What exact change do you expect and give ideas on how they can make that change.
  7. Make a follow-up meeting or evaluation.
  8. List to what they have to say with a sincere heart.  There may be justifiable reasons.
  9. Don’t postpone needed criticism.  Don’t put it off.  It will probably not get better on its own.
  10. Check yourself out first.  Are you doing the same thing?  Are you a good example?
  11. End on a positive note.  If you’re a man or woman of faith – pray together.

This is another list go guide us that we ought to print and put on our refrigerator door or bathroom mirror.  We all need to be reminded of these continually and probably need to review them before we go into a confrontational situation.  I know I do!

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Family, Leadership, Personal Development, Uncategorized

How to Respond to Criticism

Criticism 1

(John Maxwell Leadership Bible, page 1447)

I don’t have to ask if you’ve been criticized or not – all of us have.  I don’t have to ask how you felt when you were criticized – rejected, attacked, angry…revengeful.  I’ll admit I haven’t responded well when criticized.

How can we manage criticism?  How can we not lose all hope or break relationships because of criticism?  I can tell you this, a big issue for all of us is low self-esteem.  However, that’s a subject for another time.

As a leader, we can expect criticism.  We can’t please everyone.  We just have to take a risk and do what we feel is best and keep moving on.  Aristotle said, “You can avoid criticism – by saying nothing, doing nothing and being nothing!”

Here are several suggested ways by John Maxwell on how to handle criticism.  (You might want to write these down and post them on your refrigerator to remind you!)

  1.  Understand the difference between constructive and destructive criticism.  Listen with an open heart.
  2. Examine yourself – are you a critic?  Are you reaping what you sow?
  3. Watch your attitude toward the critic.  If you get a bad attitude it will cause you to not hear or see things clearly and create bitterness in your heart. Bitterness is a game-killer and will affect your health, friendships and future.
  4. Recognize that even good people (Jesus) get criticized.  It comes with leadership and life.  Put on your Big Boy / Big Girl Panties and step up to it!
  5. Are others saying the same thing about you?  If it’s one person listen and consider, but if there are others who are saying the same thing, listen up and consider what you need to change.
  6. Don’t get defensive.  Be careful about your words and body language.  Thank them for sharing, consider it and if you still feel you are right, wait for time to prove it.
  7. If you respond wrongly to criticism – anger, verbal abuse or something else – ask forgiveness.  You must own up to your wrong behavior or it will follow you as you move forward in life.
  8. Is there a grain of truth on what they’re saying?  Maybe most of it simply isn’t correct in your opinion, but there may be some.  Don’t “throw the baby out with the bathwater”!
  9. Change your mistake and concentrate on your mission.

Nobody is perfect. We all make mistakes in words, attitudes,and decisions.  Try not to be offended or defensive.  Listen and be polite.

This is huge for all of us, especially if we are in leadership.

If you like these posts, please share them with friends.

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Family, Leadership, Personal Development, Uncategorized

Carrying the Burden

Heavy Burden 2

Patrick Carnes, Ph. D., is internationally acclaimed as a speaker and authority on addiction treatment.  He has a series of books to help people recover specifically from sexual addiction.  Many people react to the idea of being a “sex addict.”  However, I’m going to be posting some short devotional articles from his book “The 40-day Focus” that can be applied to anyone struggling with any kind of addiction or compulsive behavior.  Other books of interest are “Facing the Shadow”, “The 90-Day Focus.”

Carrying the Burden

Patrick Carnes, 40-Day Focus

“The significant problems we face cannot be resolved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them.”   Albert Einstein

There is a story about a man desperately trying to get out of a jungle.  Searching for an escape, he came to a raging river with apparently no way to get across.  So he built a sturdy raft out of the wood and vines, which was all he had available.  He launched the makeshift craft into the white water and managed to push himself to the other side.  While he recovered his strength, he thought about the effort he put into the raft.  He decided he needed to bring it with him.  He told himself that there might be other streams, but maybe no materials to build a new raft.  Consequently he pulled the heavy raft through the jungle, which slowed him down considerably.  It was a great deal  of effort but he was convinced he had to do it.  He then met a traveler who observed that if he had let go of the raft, he probably would be out of the jungle, because there are always other solutions at each crossing.

The point of the story is that our sexual acting out is like this makeshift raft.  Our sexual behavior was something we used to get through difficult times.  And it worked to some degree.  But to drag it to each stressful event consumes our time and resources.  At one point we may have even needed the behavior to deal with stress and challenge.  But it has not been a functional way to live our lives.  It has damaged us and hurt those we love.

Addictions are a way of coping with the stress of life – the pain we face.  We become invested in it as a solution and we close off other and better options.  Plus, we now have a burden.  The challenge is to be able to face the white water and come up with ways to cope.  Ask yourself how your addiction has been a way to manage anxiety.  What are the anxieties, stressors of things you don’t’ want to face in your life that sexual acting out has become a method of coping for?  Has it been worth the burden?

My reactions to today’s meditation:                                                       Date:  ___________

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