Component #7 – Use conference experiences to inspire and instruct your leaders
I confess I am a conference junkie. Catalyst, Leadership Summit, ARC All Access, LeadNow… give me more conferences. But why do I enjoy them so much? It’s not the content…I can get that from a book, podcast or CD. Conferences are beneficial for a variety of reasons but for me one stands out – there’s a unique energy when you’re in a room with a crowd all learning the same thing. It’s inspiring and energizing. And that environment somehow creates a greater receptivity to new ideas, insights and learning.
It seems that Jesus understood the power of conference experiences as well. Multiple times in the Gospels we see Him surrounded by thousands of people who had traveled long distances to hear him teach. Check out Marks report of what took place on one of these occasions.
During those days another large crowd gathered. Since they had nothing to eat, Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I have compassion for these people; they have already been with me three days and have nothing to eat. If I send them home hungry, they will collapse on the way, because some of them have come a long distance.” Mark 8:1-3
The energy in those crowds must have been electric because on two different occasions the people stayed to listen despite the fact they had run out of food. Jesus had to miraculously provide meals for the thousands who wanted to stay in that environment.
Several years ago at Seacoast we recognized the value of creating conference experiences for our leaders, so two times a year we gather our leaders for an in house leadership rally. It’s a high energy evening where we cast vision, celebrate what God is doing and provide inspirational teaching on a leadership subject. Here are a few of the benefits we have discovered.
- It inspires our leaders
- It gives us the opportunity to cast a unified vision to the entire leadership core
- It gives us the chance to celebrate what’s going well
- It allows everyone to see they are a part of something bigger
- It opens their minds to new ideas and fresh insights
- It networks them with other leaders who are doing what they are doing
- It is a great time to appreciate our leaders
It is a small investment with a big payoff. Do you do in-house conferences for your leaders? If so, what benefits have you discovered?