4 C’s Of A Culture with Strong Employee Engagement

Employee engagement is a relatively new term in the business world that can trace its origin to a study by William Kahn in the late 1980s. Kahn studied two different organizations, a summer camp and an architectural firm, to see how engaged the employees were and the reasons behind it. Despite its recency, it is a hot topic in the business world; as it should be.

Companies with cultures of high engagement had a minimum of 24% lower turnover according to Gallup. In this day and age, when employee loyalty is down, high engagement is a shining star.

Having a culture of strong employee engagement will not happen on its own, but you can turn the tide by working on these four C’s.

1. Clarity

Companies with high employee engagement have incredible clarity around a few key areas. The areas they are clear about are mission, vision, and core values.

A mission outlines what the company ultimately there to do, and answers the question “why does this company exist?” The reason this is important is that your team members want to be a part of something bigger than themselves. According to Gallup, 83% of people say it is “very important” for them to believe that their life is meaningful or has a purpose. It is important for their workplace to reflect this.

Clear vision lets the team members know where it is the organization is going. If there is no clarity of vision, employees won’t feel that what they are doing matters, and won’t know if they are headed in the right direction.

Core values communicate how you’re going to get to the end result of your vision. If one of your core values is customer first, this tells you what you that you are not going to put the customer second. Understanding your customer is first, helps to act as a filter in your decision making.

2. Care

While having an effective boss is not the only driver for engagement, it is an important one. Aon’s research shows that having a connected boss and connected senior leadership is critical for a company to have high engagement.

I remember a story of someone I was working with that was incredibly discouraged at work. The conversations were based on constant challenges they were experience based on their boss not caring for them.

In a turn of events, the employee got a new boss who was highly engaged, and the person became much more passionate about their role and their productivity increased.

When an employee has a boss who cares for them, it is much less likely that the employee will want to change companies. Richard Branson has said that “Clients do not come first; employees come first. If you take care of the employees, they will take care of your clients.”

3. Coaching

The desire for professional development is very strong in people. They don’t want to just “do a job,” they want to improve themselves so they can grow. Look at the findings from Gallup on millennials’ desire for professional development.

An impressive 87% of millennials rate “professional or career growth and development opportunities” as important to them in a job… and 69% on non-millennials do the same.

Coaching is a great avenue to provide for the professional development of your people. Though you will need to find your own rhythm, these coaching conversations typically happen 2-4 times per month.

Whether you use a coaching company or empower your managers and directors to do it personally, coaching is key to the future success of your organization. If you want to ensure that your team of employees remains motivated to come to work, you have to keep investing in them!

4. Celebration

When a team member does a good job, they should be celebrated and recognized. This helps to put to bed the question “do they even notice my work?”

Recognition and rewards are the number one driver of employee engagement globally, according to Aon’smost recent comprehensive global study. Companies that have good cultures of recognition have a 31% lower voluntary turnover rate.

The rewards do not need to be expensive. Simply recognizing someone’s hard work publicly, sending a handwritten card, or taking them to lunch can go a long way.

Now that you have an understanding of the 4 C’s of employee engagement, choose one or two areas where your organization or department needs to change. Once you know which areas to work on, secure buy-in from senior leadership, as they are critical to the engagement process.

What is one area of engagement you want to improve on in your company?


Five Attributes of a Great Leader

A week ago I was leading a workshop for the entire staff of a private lending company. The owner and I have known each other for two decades.

When the workshop finished, a buzz of energy filled the room. The team was excited about the company and the possibilities of the future. They were incredibly thankful and freely expressed their gratitude.

This workshop focused on helping the owner’s team create goals for their personal and professional lives. The time we all spent together was amazing and, while I would love to give myself the credit for it all, I can’t. A great deal of it belongs to the owner.

After spending some time thinking about why our time together proved to be so dynamic, I have pinned down some of the things the owner does that makes him a great leader.

1. He built a great team.

You can go so far by yourself, but the sky is the limit if you have a great team. Many leaders worry about what needs to get done; great leaders think about having the right people on the bus. If you have the right people, you will find it so much easier to figure out what to do.

2. He cares for his team.

Some of the feedback I got from his employees was that they were touched by how much the owner cares about their personal lives. Part of our time together during the workshop was spent helping the team make sure the priorities in their life were getting the proper attention.

Every team member needs someone who cares for and encourages them. When a leader makes this a priority, everyone wins.

3. He listens to his team.

Part of our time together was collaborative. We were working through the different challenges and opportunities the company currently had. Though the owner is incredibly passionate, he did not do all the talking. He allowed his team to chime in, and when they came up with something he believed to be the correct solution, he rolled with it.
Andy Stanley is known for saying, “leaders who refuse to listen will eventually be surrounded by people who have nothing significant to say.”

4. He inspires his team.

Though I believe I provided a ton of inspiration during my time with the team, I wasn’t alone. The owner stepped in, from time to time, to encourage his team to take on board how the information we were sharing with them could help them attain the results, and the future, they desired.

It was easy to see he, the owner, was also the CIO, the Chief Inspiration Officer.

5. He develops his team.

The reason I was there was to help the team grow in their personal and professional lives. In fact, one of the major goals the owner was focusing on for the coming year was the development of his team. He has formulated weekly, monthly, and quarterly activities that will help his team reach their potential.

He has formulated weekly, monthly, and quarterly activities that will help his team reach their potential. He understands the fulfillment of the potential of his organization rests not just on him, but on the team, he has built.

The future is looking bright for this company, and it is because the owner has truly taken ownership of the future of his team.

I would love to hear what other attributes you believe makes up a good leader.

Many leaders have wondered why their teams are not performing up to their expectations. The answer may be closer to home than you think.

When I was in my early twenties, a few of my friends and I decided to take a weekend off and go to Daytona Beach. Who doesn’t love the feel of getting some time off for some rest and relaxation?

We took off from Tampa where we all live and began the scheduled two-hour journey. As I was driving us there, we were goofing off, having fun, and full of expectations for a great weekend.

Then something happened. I saw a sign on the interstate for Miami. We had been going in the wrong direction, and none of us knew it.

Sadly, the same things happen in the workplace. Employees come to work each day, put in a good day’s work, all the while going in the wrong direction.

You as the leader can help change that be helping your team in these three areas:

1. Know what their job is.
This sounds basic, but according to a Gallup study of over two million employees, “‘only about half of the employees strongly indicate that they do.” This means that one out of every two employees doesn’t confidently know what is expected of them. This same study also found that managers were just as likely to not know what was expected of them.

Just to get to first base, they should have a clear job description, but this alone is not enough. They need you as the leader to provide continual clarity on what they are supposed to do, how what they are doing impacts the company’s overall objective, and how they are making a difference.

2. Affirmed when they are doing a good job.
Yes, employees should do their jobs whether or not they are praised for their effort, but we all want to know we are appreciated and are doing our job. Studies show the companies that have good cultures of recognition have a 31% lower voluntary turnover rate.

So if you see someone who hit it out of the park recently, let them know.

Don’t be general about what they did by saying, “good job Tracy.” Instead, tell them specifically what they did, why it stood out, and how it impacted your organization’s mission.

That could look like this: “Tracy, I wanted to thank you for following through with that client of ours. I know they were pretty demanding, but like a champ, you pushed through the challenge, and they were elated with the outcome. Because of what you did, that company has signed a contract to use our services for the next two years. You have not only benefited our team, but you have shown another client why our company stands out.”

If you are in a non-profit or ministry, most of the work is done by those who volunteer their time. An affirmation may look like this: “Susie, I saw what you did for that single mom last week. She got to church just a few minutes before service began and realized she had no diapers in her diaper bag for her youngest. Instead of just saying, ‘oh no!’ You went the extra mile to ask a mom you know if she could spare a diaper. That single mom may not remember everything from the service, but she will remember how God showed his love through you. Your devotion to helping others has not only had an impact on that mom, but you solidified even more why she chooses to come to our church. Thank you for allowing Jesus to shine through you.”

One last recommendation on this subject; be genuine with your praise. If you are just checking off a box, people can tell.

3. Developed to do their job better.
Companies should be intentionally developing their team members to be the best version of themselves. As the employee get better, the company does.

This should not be the motive, team members should be developed for their benefit. More than a job, employees should be developed so they could reach higher heights.

Managers should have consistent meetings with their team members to help develop their strengths. Managers should also provide avenues for additional training; workshops, seminars, and conferences. When an employee knows that you are developing them for their benefit, they more likely to stay engaged.

Your team’s effectiveness will be largely impacted by whether or not these three things become part of your culture. Take a moment today and think about how you could improve in these three areas.

I would love to hear from you about how you accomplish any of these three areas in your organization.

If you are looking for more help in your business and personal life, I wanted you to be one of the firsts to know that I currently have four spots open for one-on-one coaching clients. My goal is to help you get clarity in your personal and business life, so you can reach your full potential, without neglecting your priorities. If you are interested in more information, go here.

In the midst of running an organization, we can all get caught up trying to keep all the plates spinning. While we are all responsible for our organization, not every area deserves equal attention.

When I was in restaurant management, I always prided myself on my personal productivity. I would go to work, and I would make sure everything was done that was necessary to keep the business going. I didn’t want anyone to ever say I wasn’t pulling my own weight.

There was an issue with this; my primary focus was on the wrong thing. Yes, things were getting done, and typically the business was doing better than when under previous management, but I was missing the thing that needed my attention the most – my team.

You have probably heard the old adage, “teamwork makes the dream work.” The problem is, many leaders fail to take care of their teams and wonder why things are not moving forward. They get their job done but wonder why the members of their team are not operating at their full capacity. We think, “they are getting paid so they are fine.” We fail to realize that people are not vending machines; money alone won’t make them operate to their full potential.

Leader, it is your job to take care of your team. Each member of your team needs someone in their corner that uniquely cares for and encourages them.

But exactly how do we do that? This can differ from place to place, but a few questions may help?
1. Who is my team?

If your organization is larger than a few handfuls of people, you will not be able to personally give attention to each person. In this case, you have to decide who will receive personal attention from you. These can include those who are heads of department, your direct reports, or those you desire to personally develop.

2. How will you care for your team?

You can also restate this, “how will you develop them?” There needs to be a change of perspective to nail this one. Instead of thinking of what is most important in our eyes, we need to discover what is significant in their eyes. Yes, they still need to do their jobs, but when our entire focus is what we can get from them, they will not be as likely to stick around. I heard someone once say, “train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don’t want to.”

Caring for people can include coaching, education, training, public recognition, or private recognition. The goal of this is to make sure the person is uniquely cared for and encouraged. If you are looking for other simple ideas this article from Forbes outlines eleven ways.

3. How will I create space to care for my team?

You can’t just shove things in your calendar when they fit. You have to intentionally and consistently make space for the priorities in your business. Decide how many hours a week you will give to caring for and developing your team. If you are doing one-on-ones you may give a half hour weekly or bi-weekly for your direct reports. You may do a once a month lunch for your team. Whatever you decide to do, it should be part of your schedule.

Someone once said, “the potential of your organizations rests on the strength of its people.” Caring for and developing your people is one of the most important responsibilities you have. And it will have a great return on investment.

If you are just starting with one-on-one development start small. Pick a person or two, and tell them you want to do one-on-ones for the next 90 days. The goal is not how many people you can develop, but giving adequate time and attention to develop some with excellence.

I would love to hear how you are going to, or currently are, caring for your team.

 

Have you ever noticed that employees seem disgruntled with their bosses? Though this can be a common theme, this does not have to be the case.

According to Gallup, two-thirds of employees are not engaged at work. That means most of the workforce is checked out in their companies. They are just going through the motions and are not reaching their potential. Remember that the potential of your organizations rests in your team.

One of the first steps you can take is to engage with your direct reports individually. I am not talking about a quick call or chat once a quarter, but regularly scheduled one-on-ones. These regular meetings provide great value for your team and also silence some negative ideas your team may have about you. Here are three ideas that one-on-ones will silence.

1. My boss doesn’t have time for me.
It is true that as a leader you may not have time for everyone in the organization, but you should have time for your direct reports. Once you set up one-on-one with your team, you send a message to each of them that you have time for them.

This can make a world of difference when your team members know that they have a set time to meet with you. You have to decide ahead of time how frequent the meetings are, but be consistent with the schedule.

2. My boss doesn’t care.
Setting aside time to meet with a team member to talk about what is going on in their world shows you care about them. Every person needs someone who uniquely cares for and encourages them; you can be that person.

During your time with them, part of your conversation should be about their development. When you invest in what matters to your team, they will be more willing to invest in what matters to you.

3. My boss is out of touch with what I am experiencing at work.
One on ones is a great way to “nip in the bud” challenging situations at work. Instead of dealing with a blowup that has been building for months or longer, your team member can let you know how they are feeling during your one-on-ones. This is so important for your company’s culture.

When I talk with employees of companies, a consistent theme is that their boss doesn’t understand their perspectives. They feel that their boss is out of touch with how they are feeling. This separation could possibly be solved by consistent meetings.

While meeting with your team won’t solve every issue you are facing, it will silence quite a few ideas. When your team feels that you have time for them, care for them, and understand how they are feeling, you will get more engaged employees.

Take out your calendar, and decide what times you could block off to have consistent meetings with your team.

Why We Is Better Than Me

Most leaders want to see their business or cause reach more people, especially if they strongly believe in its purpose and vision. We get frustrated when we don’t see the expected results and are left wondering why. Much of the time, it’s not because of a lack of desire, skill, or passion. There is something else that may be holding you back in your desire to reach the next level for your organization.

I was in my late twenties when I became the lead pastor of a church. To be honest, the ministry had been through a challenging season before I started to lead. To make matters worse, I didn’t know what I was doing.

There came a point, while I was leading, that it was “Make it or Break it” time. I knew that change needed to happen. Our organization decided to take some time to evaluate every person and every program, to make the necessary changes in order to re-launch the church.

During the evaluation process, I believe I was the one who changed the most. I realized that I could not get us to where God wanted us alone, but that it would take a team.

Looking at the life of Moses, there was a time when he was trying to complete everything himself. His father-in-law, Jethro, noticed this fallacy as we see in Exodus:

When Moses’ father-in-law saw all that Moses was doing for the people, he asked, ‘What are you really accomplishing here? Why are you trying to do all this alone while everyone stands around you from morning till evening?’ Moses replied, ‘Because the people come to me to get a ruling from God.’ Exodus 18:14-15

Moses couldn’t see his mistakes because he was too busy. He was wearing himself and others out—therefore, he was unknowingly holding back progress. Moses was encouraged to find a team.

“Now listen to me, and let me give you a word of advice, and may God be with you. You should continue to be the people’s representative before God, bringing their disputes to Him. Teach them God’s decrees, and give them His instructions. Show them how to conduct their lives. But select from all the people some capable, honest men who fear God and hate bribes. Appoint them as leaders over groups of one thousand, one hundred, fifty, and ten. They should always be available to solve the people’s common disputes, but have them bring the major cases to you. Let the leaders decide the smaller matters themselves. They will help you carry the load, making the task easier for you.” Exodus 18:19-22

We have a hard time letting go because of these three things:

1. We don’t think others will do as good a job. Moses probably thought he was the only one who could make rulings since he was the one to whom God spoke. He was wrong, and so are we, when we believe we are the only one who can do a decent job.

2. We are insecure. Many don’t hand over responsibility because they are afraid of others getting some of the attention. You will never attract high-capacity people if it always has to be about you.

3. We haven’t successfully delegated. The key word here is “successfully.” We may have delegated tasks creating followers, but we have not done the right thing by delegating authority, which creates leaders.

You cannot attain a breakthrough because you need help from a team. One of the first things I did was to appoint key people who could lead areas of the ministry. Now, this is still a work in progress, but much headway has been made. God brought in great leaders, and subsequently, our mission is being achieved.

I encourage you to read Exodus 18:13-27 and go over the reasons listed below that can help bring your desired breakthrough.

1. You can handle more collectively than you can individually.

2. There are many areas where others are stronger than you.

3. More people will be taken care of (i.e. more can be accomplished).

You alone may not be able to bring the breakthrough you desire, but a team working together can go further than you could imagine. If you need help in the area of delegation check out my free ebook.

Question: What do you need to delegate and who do you need to empower to accomplish that?

A Free Guide on How to Empower Others and Focus on Your Priorities

If you believe in your organization or cause, you probably want to reach more people. However, there is one issue; as individuals, we are limited in how much we can accomplish alone. In the midst of our day-to-day activities, we get stuck doing things that are not our highest payoff activity.

It was in a season where I was wanting to move forward the mission of the church I lead that I created “Discovering the Process of Delegation.” I wrote it for both me and my team. Seasons of frustration can result in a season of innovation. Most of the good content out there on any subject came from the writer’s struggle with a topic or situation, which was precisely the case with this eBook.DelegationCover3

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There I was, wanting to move forward so badly, but instead, I was getting caught up doing activities that would be better suited for someone else. I have a real tension to manage though; most of the work at the organization I lead is done by volunteers. So I can’t just dump what I don’t want to do onto them, simply because it is not fair. For this reason, I believe we should delegate tasks to others according to their passions and skills.

What I was lacking was a clear process to get the results I desired. So, I created it in this eBook with accompanying worksheets. “Discovering the Process of Delegation” is not only a short eBook, but it also includes step-by-step instructions to help you empower those around you. Yes, although you may have attempted to delegate before and possibly failed, the issue is that you may not have delegated correctly.

“Discovering the Process of Delegation” will help you:
* Understand the principles of delegation
* Know the rules for effective delegation
* Empower your team
* Decide who the person to delegate to is
* Discover your highest payoff activities

I have included two worksheets that will help you track a path of effective delegation. I seriously believe that the results you can get from following the steps laid out in this eBook can transform your organization.

In exchange for the book, all that I ask is that you subscribe to my email list. This will help you stay up to date with the best content I create. I would also love your feedback on the book.

 

 

I’ve heard someone say, “The potential of your organizations rests in the strength of its people.”  If this is the case, we should be focused on developing our teams.

I have served in a leadership capacity for over a decade, in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors. During the early years of my leadership tenure, I relied on my ability to get work done. While I did a good job at maintaining the organizations I led, they were not moving forward as I was expecting. No matter how hard I worked, I would never achieve my desired outcomes.

Looking back, the biggest issue was that I was not developing or empowering my team. King Solomon said it well, “Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed.” Not to be corny here, but I was focused on harnessing the power or me, instead of we. I was not tapping into the true power of the organization and my team.

Fast forward a decade and I have become much more intentional at developing those around me. Here are a few simple things I have learned along the way, which helped to develop my team.

1. Coaching Your Team. I believe strongly in coaching your team. I meet every other week with every individual who directly reports to me for their personal development. I learned this from Building Champions.

They start by completing either a life plan or business plan, which serves as a basis for their personal development. These documents include the goals they have set for themselves in their personal and professional lives. Your job is to encourage them and keep them accountable to achieve their goals.

They send you an email 24-48 hours before we meet, answering:

  • Big wins since our last meeting
  • Challenges/obstacles that you’re facing
  •  Key topics we need to discuss
  •  Decisions we need to make

Team members leave these meetings with an action item(s) to complete. During your next meeting, you can ask them about their progress. This built-in accountability benefits both them and you and helps you to develop your team.

I have used the services of coaches for years, and our team would love the opportunity to come alongside you through coaching. Besides creating a plan for your personal and professional life, we can set up a coaching program for your team.

2. Conferences. Get your team out of the office, and get them into an environment where they are inspired together. Yes, you can listen to podcasts or watch leadership videos at work, but there is something about getting out of the office. Mark Batterson is known for saying, “A change of place, plus a change of pace, equals a change of perspective.”

It amazes me how a team member hearing the same thing from someone else causes them to “get it.” In a conference setting, your team will be inspired to see what is possible and hear from some of the best leaders in your industry.

3. Empowering your Team. If we never give people a chance to step up to the plate, they will never develop their swing. We have to give the eagles in our organizations a chance to fly, or they may simply go somewhere else.

To truly empower people, we have to give away responsibilities and the authority to accomplish them. We may have delegated tasks, creating followers; but often, we have not done the right thing by delegating authority to create leaders.

You may have heard the adage, “It takes teamwork, to make the dream work.” The potential is in your team, and as a leader, you are the one that can draw it out of them.

 

What is one step you can take today to develop your team? Is there anything else you could add to this list?
Photo courtesy of Adobe Stock

 

3 Questions on How To Handle Criticism

If you are moving forward in life, it won’t be long before someone criticizes something you say, do or don’t do. Though it is never easy, I think it is possible to handle criticism with dignity, poise, and grace.

In early 2015, things were really looking up at the church where I serve as Pastor. People were coming to church, lives were being changed, and God was helping our church family grow.

But in spite of all the good things happening, one simple comment brought my world crashing down. Someone came up to me one day after service and shared with me their dislike of something we did during the service. That one comment took me from high to low. I know the person who shared with me has a good heart and was simply trying to be helpful, but the negative comment shattered my world at that moment.

As much as I wanted to just brush off that comment and forget all about it, I decided to use it as a teachable moment for myself. I have learned that we cannot discount criticism from other people as it can help us to grow, even if it’s hard to hear. I encourage you to lean in when you are criticized and evaluate the criticism from a logical, analytical standpoint so that you can learn, grow and become better because of it instead of sad, frustrated, or angry.

Here are three questions you should ask yourself when you face criticism so that you can use it to improve and become even better in your life:

1. Is there any truth to what is being said?

This is an extremely important question to ask yourself when facing criticism. We may not like what we hear or the manner in which the criticism was expressed, but we should not ignore the truth behind the words. This question is best answered once our emotions have subsided and we have the ability to think objectively about what was said.

2. Are they a foe, fan, or a friend?

We need to ask ourselves which one of these three categories the critics fall under so that we can determine the validity of the criticism and understand how to move forward.

 FoeMichael Hyatt calls these people trolls: “These people have an agenda. They are out to hurt you— or at least use you for their own ends. They want to lure you into a fight. I have had three this week. They taunt and mock you. They are unreasonable. If you engage them, they will only distract you and deplete your resources. The best thing you can do is ignore them. As someone once said, ‘resistance only makes them stronger.’ You will never satisfy them. Just keep doing what you know you are called to do.”

Fan: Fans are those who always tell you that you are doing a good job. We all enjoy encouragement in the things we do, but these people may simply be telling you you’re amazing because that’s what they do. Remember that fans may be people who don’t know you well enough to give critical feedback.

Friend: A friend is someone who wants the best for you and is not afraid to give you honest feedback. A friend knows you well and has a desire for you to reach your God-given potential. When friends give criticism or feedback, make sure you pay close attention to it and use it to improve.

3. What do I do with the criticism?

No matter who was critical to you or the manner in which they spoke their words, you can grow from the incident. Remember, growth only occurs when resistance is added.

If you know the criticism given is true, you need to ask yourself, “What can I do to better myself in this area?” This is a key for you to get better from the criticism instead of bitter.

If the criticism is not true, you should ask yourself if the person who shared it with you knows you well. If the answer is yes, you may want to have a follow-up conversation with them to clear the air. If the answer is no, you may want to simply brush off the comments and move forward.

Regardless of what you do, don’t let bitterness take root when someone is critical of you. Yes, this will require you to be intentional, but feedback can be a great catalyst for growth. Some of the toughest criticism I have received has resulted in some of my most beneficial growth.

How can this post help you with handling recent criticism? Would you add anything to this list?

Photo courtesy of Adobe Stock

Change is a word that gets some excited but makes others cringe. Regardless of which side of the fence you are on, change is going to happen.

I became the lead pastor of a church when I was 29. It was the same church I had attended since my early twenties. While the ministry had experienced many years of success, it also had a few challenging seasons before I became the pastor.

A few years into my tenure, I realized the church needed a major overhaul. In the fall of 2013, I called a leadership meeting to discuss this. I shared my heart about the need for change. We decided we would evaluate every person on staff and every program in the church, and after making the needed changes we would re-launch the church.

I thought the change process would take six months and then we would be ready to re-launch. Instead, it took sixteen months. Once we re-launched, we saw new life come to the church. The process definitely challenged me and taught me a few things about leading change in an organization.

1. Change is hard. There, I said it. When you decide a major change is needed in an organization- especially one that has been around for a while- the course will be tough. Change is hard, but the consequences of staying the same are harder. I heard someone say you have to decide between two pains— the pain of change or the pain of slowly dying.

2. Change must begin with the leader. If you personally are not growing and changing, your organization will not change; change begins at the top. During my season of change, my leadership skills grew by leaps and bounds. I read books, attended conferences, prayed earnestly, and got help from peers and coaches.

3. Not everyone wants change. You may wrongly believe everyone in your organization will agree on the need to change, but this is often not the case. When people don’t see a need for change, they may resist it. There are always some who enjoy things the way they are. Many times those resistant to change have the loudest voices.

4. Not everyone will still be there after the change. This is always a tough one. It’s never easy when people are no longer part of a church or organization. While you should never intentionally push people away, some people will leave when things are not the way they were yesterday.

If you are truly making some big changes, chances are you may have to adjust roles or let some people go. I heard Joyce Meyer say that every time the bus stops, someone gets on and someone gets off the bus. This is something you are going to have to be all right with.

5. Not everything has to change. Before we re-launched our church, I thought everything needed an overhaul. After evaluating, I realized some things still served our ultimate purpose. In the end, many- but not all- things changed. The change is needed only if it helps us move towards our desired outcome. We should never change simply for the sake of change.

6. Change is worth it. The last few years have been incredibly challenging, but well worth it. Yes, it was tough and some members weren’t fans and left the church, yet the fruit that came, in the end, was worth it. We are a few years past that first meeting, and I am so glad we moved forward.

There are a lot of things I am still learning, but here are a few tidbits to help you lead change:

1. Be clear on why you need to change. If you are not clear on why change is needed, no one else will be. For you, it could be a shifting market, a change in culture, or that the organization has hit its life cycle. If you are not clear and passionate about why you’re changing, you may not make it through the process. The why behind the change is more important than the what. People need to know why we can’t stay where we are.

2. Get buy-in from key people. Before telling everyone about the change, you need buy-in from key stakeholders. These may be direct reports, managers, board members, or key volunteers. Give these people time to think about what you are proposing and give you feedback. I believe it’s best to make decisions together. Scripture tells us there is safety in the multitude of counsel. Once they have bought into your ideas, these key people can add keen insight and be your greatest champions of the vision.

3. Over-communicate change. You can’t talk about your desired change in one meeting and expect everyone to get it. It may be something you have been thinking about for months or even years, so not everyone will get it the first time. Talk about the change in your meetings and emails, on social media, and via other communication outlets. Give your employees or members of your organization a chance to absorb the information in various forms.

4. Celebrate the small wins. We need to stop and celebrate the incremental changes happening along the way. This will communicate your desired change but in a different tone. Sending someone a thank you note, rewarding your team with dinner, or publicly acknowledging a job well done goes a long way. It communicates, “This is exactly what we are looking for.”

When you start on the journey to change an organization, change may not be immediate, but it will be well worth it.

What step do you need to take today to make the needed changes in your organization? Are there any other points you would like to add that is not listed here?