By Todd Adkins
If you want to remain agile in ministry, how do you establish a team around you to help? Let’s take a look at this 9-box that assesses a person’s influence and their investment in your church and ministry. Don’t just think about people who have little or, maybe, formal authority. Think about those informal authority and influence in your church as well.
First, we want to rate a person’s influence as low, medium, or high. Next, we want to rate if that person is invested as low, medium, or high. Mark where those two lines intersect on this 9-box grid. I suggest you only focus on people who fall in the upper right hand quadrants, as they are the most invested and the most influential in your church. In fact, I am going to discuss these four types of people individually. This doesn’t mean you need to ignore anyone else. But when you are building a coalition to move people forward and you want to ready your team, these are the people you focus on.
For the highly influential and the highly invested people, use them as spokespersons for this change that you are leading. Put them out front. Give them a microphone and make sure that you leverage their influence and buy-in to move forward, especially in the beginning of casting new vision or leading new change.
For your rock stars, that are highly influential and somewhat invested, you want to tie them strongly back to your church’s mission and how you are realigning the ministries to carry that out now. You want to leverage their influence by finding them a role to do during this change process.
Similarly for your shareholders, they’ve got some influence and some investment. You want to really cast vision to them and earn their buy-in for the changes or adaptations that you are making. Then make the ask for a deeper involvement in the ministry and in the change. It’s easier to increase their investment than it is their influence at this time. As long as you make a clear ask that is tied to this new or changing work, they will be honored and energized by it. If it’s not intentional though, they can feel like you are just dumping on them. You want to be really careful here with your shareholders.
For your MVPs, you want to have their faces and their stories upfront and center as the change is being implemented and rolling out. This move may seem a little bit unexpected because they are not the most influential people. But they’re very strategic. Bring their stories to the attention of others to build the credibility and social proof. This is the everyday man getting behind the change versus the people we all assume will be on board and trotted up front in the beginning. This can really build momentum in your church. It’s a groundswell to bring people over to your cause who are still sitting on the fence.
In the exercise for this step, you want to name names. You want to name the names of the people in the upper right hand portion of this 9-box. Then you want to compare notes with your team and identify the people who are best suited to reach out to those people who you’ve identified, so you can then invite them to be a part of the change that you are leading.
To help you lead change in your church or ministry, our team has created a FREE course on Leading Rapid Change: 7 Steps to Agile Leadership in your church. Click here to get started.