Thursday, August 5, 2010

Willow Creek Global Summit Notes: Andy Stanley

According to Andy every church/organization has issues that are ‘in tension’ that shouldn’t be completely resolved.
ie: time and energy for family life or work
marketing or sales
management or leadership
focusing on reaching the unchurched vs spending more energy on caring for the already churched.

Really – is one of these options completely and constantly better than the other?

When these large areas of consistent tension arise – consider that these are not opposites to be decided between but instead they are “tensions to be managed.”

To distinguish between problems to solve and tensions to manage, ask the following:

Does this problem or tension keep resurfacing? Seasonal cycles?
Are there mature advocates for both sides? Like those asking how we can make/keep our church safe for unbelievers and how we can do more to develop mature believers?
Are the two sides really interdependent?

The role of leadership is to leverage the tension to the benefit of the organization.

Identify the tensions to be managed in your organization.
Create terminology (“I guess that’s a tension we’ll have to learn to manage.”)
Inform your core. (Key players must understand this principle.)
Continually give value to both sides.
Don’t weigh in too heavily based on your personal biases. (Understand the up side of the opposite side, and the down side of your own side.)
Don’t allow strong personalities to win the day. (I need passionate people that will champion their side, but I need mature people that realize the larger realities and the tension that will never go away and we must manage.)
Don’t think in terms of balance. Think in terms of rhythm. Don’t try to be fair and balance all issues but address them in rhythm.

When is the time or season to lean away from something? When is the time or season to lean in? There’s a time when we need more singing than preaching, a time when we need more preaching than singing. . . We must pay attention to the rhythm of our organization.

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