4 Leadership Development Myths

If you have invested time, energy and money investing in resources and training to help you grow as a leader, you know how important your ongoing development is to you and your church.

So why does the idea of developing other leaders have you frustrated?

Let me guess...

You've already put time and energy into developing leaders but you still don't have enough of the right kind of leaders that your church needs.

You love the idea of developing leaders but you feel overwhelmed - there’s so much information coming from so many voices and ministry platforms. 

You have developed leaders for more than a decade, but you’re not getting the same type of results as you did even five years ago. 

Busy church leaders (like you and me) don't have time to waste on stuff that doesn't help people follow Jesus. If you've ever tried to develop leaders before, you know that sinking feeling of waiting and wondering if all of your hard work even matters. 

In my experience, I've found that four major myths are to blame when church leaders don't develop other leaders.

I'm going to defuse those myths for you, and show you how to replace them with practices that will not only produce great results, but will remove the stress that comes from feeling like you have to do everything yourself. 

Myth #1: Leadership Is Reserved For A Small Group Of Special People

What most leaders think of as 'leadership development' is really just a small fraction of what it entails. 

Most view leadership development as just the training component. In fact, the training makes up no more than 20% of a fully-developed leadership development STRATEGY.

A leadership development strategy that actually works involves 5 key stages (attract, build, connect, develop, evaluate), all of which MUST be executed in perfect harmony in order for leaders to thrive.

In short, a leadership pipeline (the leadership development strategy I use) isn't a single tactic, but an entire system with many moving parts, specific timelines, and levers to pull.

And a critical factor in that system is that it doesn't just focus on developing elders, deacons, staff, group leaders, etc. Every person who volunteers in any capacity within the church is part of the pipeline. 

When you create a multi-tiered process that helps people throughout the organization grow intentionally, you no longer have to guess or get desperate to fill critical leadership roles in your church.

And you don’t have to wait for ‘high-capacity’ leaders to walk in the door. Leadership is an ordinary task done by ordinary people that can produce extraordinary results. 

Myth #2: Leadership Development Takes A Ton Of Effort

Not gonna lie. Developing leaders is hard work. 

But that doesn't mean that it has to be complicated. 

From knowing the different levels of leadership that exist in your church to implementing a simple and sustainable 5-stage approach at each level, a leadership pipeline can take an otherwise COMPLEX strategy and make it attainable for even the busiest leaders.

And if you are one of the 2% of churches in the U.S. that have a leadership pipeline, you have a huge advantage over other churches who are trying to figure out how to get to the next level. Think stewardship, not competition.

So, yeah, building a leadership pipeline takes work...but you've already proven that you're willing to put in effort. You just need the reassurance of knowing that every bit of energy you put into developing leaders is going to pay off big time in the long run.

What you CAN'T afford to do is to waste time and energy in perpetual 'figure it out' mode. 

Myth #3 - I'm good; I learned about leadership development a few years ago.

While it's fantastic that you got a head start on developing leaders, you may be putting yourself at a distinct disadvantage if you're relying on strategies and tactics you learned a few years ago.

The people in your church have changed...

Attention spans have changed...

Technology has changed...

The habits of prospective leaders (especially volunteers) have changed...

Best practices for teaching, training and development have changed... (There were a few ways to effectively train people a few years ago that are now surefire ways to cripple your process).

And how we go about getting people into the pipeline (and to keep going) has changed as well.

Hint: It's not enough to just invite people into a class or group and hope they show up. There are very specific things you MUST do to not only make sure they show up, but show up focused and ready to go.

So when you add it all up, there's not much you can bank on from the tactics of years past if you want to succeed in the shifting paradigm of leadership development strategy.

Which gets us into our next myth...

Myth #4 - It's too late. I just don't have the leaders who can get us where we need to go.

Sure, you missed the boat on leadership development as a tactic for finding elders or group leaders...

...but there's always another boat coming!

And that next boat is...wait for it...

A leadership pipeline that serves as a complete system for every leader at every level in your church. 

So keep reading...now that you know these 4 leadership development myths, I've created a DETAILED, free cheat sheet to help you with your first steps in building your leadership pipeline. 

My hope for you is to avoid the countless pitfalls that make most leadership development systems ineffective.

I've been working on leadership pipelines for more than 5 years and I've made a ton of mistakes along the way. Will you let me help you not do the same? I've compiled a list of 5 of my biggest leadership development mistakes and I'll show you how to avoid them before you build your first (or next!) pipeline. Click here now to get that list!

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