Last week I was reminded of the leadership of Jack Welch, the legendary CEO of General Electric. Under Welch’s leadership, GE became one of the most profitable and influential corporations in the world.
Welch is known for his dynamic leadership. He promoted six rules for successful leadership.
Welch’s six rules are: (1) Control your destiny or someone else will; (2) Face reality as it is, not as it was or as you wish it were; (3) Be candid with everyone; (4) Don’t manage–lead; (5) Change before you have to; (6) If you don’t have a competitive advantage, don’t compete.
While not all of these apply to the church, three of these fit exactly what we do as pastors and churches.
First, we must take a realistic look at where we are. While we might like for things to be different, they are what they are. If you allow yourself to think otherwise, you will never make the hard decisions that must be made.
I encourage pastors to keep numbers and statistics about everything. If you do so (and keep honest numbers), you will have an instant analysis about what you are doing.
Second, we must be people of honesty and integrity. All pastors know the temptation to tell people what they want to hear. After all, it’s hard to be a pastor if you don’t want to help people or for them to feel better. Unfortunately, telling people what they need is the requirement. Speak the truth in love.
This means to tell the truth with a desire to help and encourage. Jack Welch said, “Be candid with everyone.”
Third, we must embrace change, and we must do so as early as possible.
Here’s another thing all pastors know–churches do not like to change. In order for change to occur in advance, the church has to be able to understand the need and the advantages of the change. Then, people have to be given time to process the coming changes.
Pastor, lead your church. Do so with kindness, courage, and integrity.
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