Stuck? Facing a Wall? 4 Questions that Lead to Breakthrough

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Need a breakthrough? Or at least some breakthrough thinking?

Have the challenges of the season we're in made you feel like you're in a maze that you just have to get through?

How firmly are you committed to the strategies you're using to connect unconnected people? Stuck like Super Glue?

How dry is the cement around what's possible in your discipleship effort? Pretty firm? Room to wiggle?

As we continue to think about how to help more people experience genuine life-change, I find myself drawn again to ideas in Gary Hamel's The Future of Management.

Questions that maximize the chances for "precedent-breaking" innovation:

Here are four questions that maximize the chances for "precedent-breaking" innovation:

1. "What's the 'tomorrow problem' that you need to start working on right now?"

Several possible 'tomorrow problems' come to my mind. For example, "How do you identify, recruit and develop new leaders remotely?" Or, what's the best way to connect unconnected people online (in the event it remains the only way)?

2. "What's the frustrating 'ether/or' you'd like to turn into an 'and'?

This is a fantastic question. Start getting at the answers by listing all of the either/ors in your ministry or its strategies. For example, we can either focus on connecting unconnected people or we can focus on making disciples.

3. "What's the espoused idea you'd like to turn into an embedded capability?"

Another great questions. Get started by making a list of the ideas, values and philosophies you claim to embrace (but little or no evidence supports your claim).

4. "What the 'can't do' that needs to become a 'can do'?"

This is another opportunity to start by assembling a long list and then voting on the most pressing 'can't do' that needs to become a 'can do.' Need an example? Here are a few: We can't find enough leaders or coaches.

What's the process?

Just stop for a moment and think about those four questions. Imagine pulling together a team of folks that are really invested and engaged in the life-change process at your church and spending time on any of these questions.

Think you'd have a great discussion? Absolutely.

Think getting some answers up on a flip chart might be a great first step? Definitely.

Not the last step...but certainly the first step.

Hamel makes the point that "what's lacking is not insightful analysis, but truly bold and imaginative alternatives to the management status quo (p. 40, The Future of Management)."

What's he saying? Simply that getting answers to these four questions is only the beginning. Think though, about what you could do once you had the answer to any one of these questions?

Think about how you could pull your team into a great discussion about how to develop authentic capabilities! It would give you a whole new way of looking at your ministry.

Further Reading:

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