Pardon the interruption. This post may not seem to about launching, building or sustaining a small group ministry, but trust me, it has everything to do with it. Bear with me and I think you’ll come away with what you need for the day.
One of the books that has influenced me the most over the last several years is Scott Belsky’s Making Ideas Happen. I wasn’t alone. When it came out in mid 2010 it was on lots of recommended lists. If you haven’t caught on yet, it would be a great addition to your current stack.
Scott Belsky is the founder of an interesting company called Behance and blogs at 99u (one of the touchstone ideas in Belsky’s work is the Thomas Edison quote that “genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration.”)
In a recent blog post on strategy he pointed out that most successful organizations become efficient at the business of usual and “the more efficient we are, the more difficult it is to change the steps we take every day.” And I think for many of us, this is what is actually happening. Our organizations have policies and budgets and a calendar and the procedures for getting new programs added to the calendar.
Belsky went on to point out that “it is hard to take new steps because each one defies some rule or precedent for how we make day-to-day decisions.” Uh oh. He’s been to our organizations!
What I loved in the article was his prescription for what to do when precedent and the status quo stands in the way:
- “Eliminate the bias towards “precedent” when you’re building something new. New strategy warrants unprecedented action.” That’s a helpful line to have in mind as you’re working with your leadership team. Don’t you think?
- “Don’t let the new steps you must take be overridden by legal, branding, impatience, or other logistics. While it may seem easy to give in on the little details, any little turn off the road points you in a new direction. Only thing that should override strategy is better strategy.” Again…oh my. Most of us face death by a thousand little cuts.
- “Keep reiterating “why” you’re pursuing change, and the consequences for not changing. Sometimes, especially in established businesses, the consequences of not changing are more motivating than the goals.” This is right at the heart at where many of our ministries are right now. Don’t stop. Be kind and gentle and don’t stop. Reiterate the why.
We now return you to your previously scheduled programming.
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