I recieved an email the other day from Warren Bird, Director of Research at Leadership Network, saying LN did a poll recently asking 5000 church leaders about their top areas of interest. Guess what the #1 topic was? You guessed it- Leadership development.
It’s become clear that churches are struggling with leadership development and our current approach has to change. Well, the good news is there seems to be change happening. In yesterdays post I mentioned I would be sharing several movements that are happening in leadership development, so here we go: The first is a movement to MENTORING.
Okay I admit that mentoring is by no means new, it was Jesus exclusive method for training leaders. I’m not sure why, but somewhere over the centuries the church seemed to move away from it, but now mentoring is making a comeback. Even in the business world mentoring is becoming the preferred method of development. Leading business thinkers such as Noel Tichy and Ram Charan are promoting mentoring as a primary way of developing up and coming leaders.
I like to think of mentoring as the intentional investment of an experienced leader into the life of one who is less experienced for the purpose of developing their leadership character and competencies.
Carl George says it looks like this:
I do, you watch, we talk
I do, you help, we talk
You do, I help, we talk
You do, I watch, we talk
We each begin to train someone else.
Now while this sounds pretty simple, please understand this is no small change. This is a paradigm shift for most organizations that will take time, effort and focus. Moving to a mentoring approach decentralizes your leadership development efforts and puts the responsibility of equipping leaders back into the hands of the leaders in your organization. If you are up for the change I promise you it will not be easy, but it will be worth it.
This approach will take…
- Commitment, not only from senior leaders but ALL leaders in the organization will be expected to identify and equip potential leaders.
- Patience, mentoring is not the fast track to development. It takes time for true development and transformation to take place.
- Reestablishing roles, expectations, processes and tools to execute this approach to development.
- Equipping your current leaders in the ancient art of mentoring.
Check back tomorrow for movement #2