It has been said, “Leaders know the way, go the way, and show the way.”
While I agree with that statement, I have discovered that it only takes place if it happens intentionally. In other words, leaders don’t automatically know, go, and show the way—especially all at once and in a systematic way.
How then can leaders intentionally invest in their teams? Below are five ways, which I’m specifically applying to the ways a senior pastor can regularly develop his staff. But these could certainly be applied in a variety of settings.
What the senior pastor does becomes a model to the entire leadership team. Endeavor to personally model your ministry philosophy.
Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.—Philippians 4:9
Additionally, I believe it is important that we, as spiritual leaders, model joy as well. Ministry is about so much more than the motions and methods—it is about serving God and His people from the heart.
Establish formal training times, such as weekly staff meetings, annual reviews and retreats. And look for informal opportunities to mentor, invest in, and fellowship with those you lead.
Also read together. Our pastoral staff is currently reading the book The Power of Moments to challenge our thoughts on creating special moments for our church family.
This is the greatest challenge I face in staff development—being able to transfer responsibilities among a growing staff without hurting people.
I challenge our staff to “own” a ministry, and then I ask them to give it back when I feel their responsibilities have grown or that someone else should handle it! The smoothness of this kind of transition greatly depends on the spiritual maturity of the staff member. As a leader, you are somewhat at their mercy, but a mature staff member will be understanding and godly during times of transitions. A growing church—and a growing team—are always in transition.
Do not be so naive as to think that you will never have conflict, misunderstandings, or relational struggles with your staff. But godly leaders who serve together will always pursue spiritual reconciliation and forgiveness.
And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.—Ephesians 4:32
Paying them, caring for their families, and building them with positive words of encouragement and affirmation are necessary to motivation.
Masters, give unto your servants that which is just and equal; knowing that ye also have a Master in heaven.—Colossians 4:1
Someone wisely said, “Help people reach their full potential, catch them doing something right.”
Serving God is one of the great privileges of the Christian life. Investing in others doing the same is one of the great privileges of leadership. Don’t take the privilege lightly.