Monday, September 19, 2011

Leadership Competency: Asking the Right Questions

There is an old peanuts' comic strip that shows Charlie Brown firing an arrow blindly into the side of a barn. The next cell shows him after walking up to the spot where the arrow landed, and with bucket and brush in hand, painting a target around the arrow. Looking back at Lucy he says "this way, I never miss!"

When it comes to measuring effective leadership in local churches, I fear that many pastors and congregations use this same approach. Many congregations paint targets in the form of expectations, that are irrelevant, or unBiblical, or unrealistic. Some pastors likewise, simply paint targets around themselves in an effort to either avoid accountability altogether, or to protect themselves from a church they fear has set them up to fail. The results of this vicious cycle can be seen in many churches throughout North America.

On Sunday night, October 2, our Association will be hosting our annual meeting, and will feature a panel discussion on leadership competency aimed specifically at this issue, and led by seven seasoned leaders from our own churches. The next day, we will host two identical pastor's leadership forums to allow pastors and church leaders to further unpack the issues that will be raised at the plenary session. If you are in the Baltimore-Washington, D.C. area, there is no charge for attending these events, and you can sign up here.
In previous posts, I introduced you to the concept behind this approach to our annual meeting, and also introduced you to the men who will lead us in discussion on Sunday night. In this post, I want to begin asking questions that we will address on October 2.

Feel free to respond to the first three leading questions by commenting here, and if you have additional questions you would like our panel to address, please leave them here, or send them to us at with "Panel Discussion Question" in the subject line.

Again, you can sign up for the plenary session here, and the forums here.

1. How would you define "effective leadership" in the church, in two sentences or less?

2. How should effective leadership in the church be measured and/or judged?

3. What are churches measuring/examining in their pastors that is not helpful to their pastor, or to the church?

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