Guest Post by Richard Burkey

My leadership is enriched because of the 7 weeks I spent taking a LIFT Online Class Leading for Transformation. I also understand that while it is great to learn new principles, it is most impactful when I apply those principles. The final project for the class is to create a 90-day plan. I’d like to share a snapshot of my action plan, focused on shaping a culture for transformation. What helps you cultivate your culture?

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The Hardest Question to Ask

“I have the ability to make a grown person cry.”

Those were the words of a business partner on one of our late night walks. Our company felt like it gone from 12 people to 30 people overnight. The new PR director was 23, fresh out of college and earlier that week my friend had said something that drove her to tears. Like Peter Parker, he realized that with great power comes great responsibility.

His words stick with me to this day. At that very moment, his words made me realize I was in over my head.

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Vision is Key

Vision is a key pillar for great organizations.

Vision inspires, directs, and moves people into action. Without it, organizations could become static, complacent, and/or disconnected from their respective missions.

Vision also has a tendency to become exaggerated or “over-the-top”. There’s a fine balance between strong vision and wishful thinking. There’s nothing more disheartening that great vision being projected by a leader that never comes to pass. Overtime, this kind of behavior will produce a lack of trust and confidence in the organization.

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Saying “No” to Opportunity

It’s your choice.

Life is filled with small choices that ultimately determine your “destiny”.
I’m not just talking about choices you make, but also, the choices you choose not to make. A “no” is as legitimate of a chocie as “yes”. Sometimes, a decision not to take on another “good opportunity” or a decision not to schedule another meeting can become a game-changer for our productivity.

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7 Steps for Processing Criticism

Kurt Bubna serves as the Lead Pastor of Eastpoint Church, a large, growing, and community-focused congregation in Spokane, WA. He passionately believes that church should reach the lost and love the found. Read more from Kurt at his blog.

Why is it so easy to become discouraged by criticism? Why do we struggle with fear of rejection and hunger too much at times for acceptance and affirmation?

You’ve probably been there too: the brunt of someone’s despairing remark that takes you down emotionally like a falling star flashing through the sky in a fast burnout of despair. It doesn’t matter how many people say, “You’re awesome!” when you’re bleeding out from the one cruel voice of rejection that wounded you.

We’re human. We feel. For some of us, words of affirmation are the love language that best feeds our soul. Words matter to all of us. Words can cut, and words can heal. What Solomon wrote in Proverbs 18:21 is spot on, “Words can bring death or life.” I wish this wasn’t true, but it is.

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Reflecting on Conflict

Craig Owens is the husband of one wife, and the father of three kids and pastor at Calvary Assembly of God in Cedar Springs, MI. We’re glad to share his reflection from The Global Leadership Summit.

Recently I spent two jam-packed days at the Willow Creek Leadership Summit. As always, I was on information overload with the great content that is presented every year. So I took some time to ponder what I learned.

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Your Digital Front Door

Every pastor and senior leader must give priority attention to their Internet experience because it is your digital front door. Visitors may only knock once, so you have to be ready to greet them and wow them with a great Web experience. It’s important to remember that visitors to your site represent real people. As pastors and ministry leaders, your goal is to reach people. That’s what you’ve been called to do. The Internet has given us a valuable way to reach more people than ever before. That’s why every church has to place priority attention on their Internet presence and experience.  It’s important not so you can drive people to your cool website. It’s important because eternity is at stake.

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Man on a Mission – An Interview with Ben Cooley

Ben Cooley is a GLS leader in the UK, passionate about fighting human trafficking. Here’s a bit of his story, we hope it’s as inspiring to you as it was to us.

I grew up in the north east of England, in a little town called Yarm and I moved over to Manchester to train as an opera singer, to wear tights and to sing arias.

I met my wife in Manchester, we got married and had kids and then we started an organization together called Hope for Justice.

I finished training, set up some consultancy businesses, and then I heard about human trafficking and was absolutely devastated. I had just become a father for the second time and thought that if my daughter was the victim then I would have done something.

My parents were church planters.
They and other couples decided to set up a church and didn’t realise how fast it would grow, and how much it would impact and influence the community. Within a matter of years there were hundreds of people meeting every Sunday just to hear about how God can use individuals to transform situations. So I grew up in the environment of a growing, learning experience. These were people that hadn’t started churches before, never wanted to start a church, but believed that there needed to be a church that represented a God who is alive and well and wants to be engaged in people’s lives.

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