By unSeminary: Welcome back to this week’s unSeminary podcast. This week we’re talking with Darrell Roland, from Rock Bridge Community Church. They have six locations in Georgia and Tennessee as well as a Spanish service.
One of the roles of the executive pastor is the management and leadership of the staff, and so today we’re talking about how to help our staff continue to grow as people in their own spiritual life and as a team.
Spiritual health first. // “If you take care of the people, they will take care of the mission.” When Darrell first joined the Rock Bridge staff in 2018, he had the opportunity to read “The Emotionally Healthy Leader: How Transforming Your Inner Life Will Deeply Transform Your Church, Team, and the World” by Peter Scazzero and knew he needed to put the focus on the staff and getting them spiritually healthy first. So Darrell spent his time watching, evaluating, and talking with his staff to see what their greatest needs were.Pray about next steps. // At this same time, the church leadership started to hear rumblings from the staff about how the church missed the target in caring for people in the congregation – they didn’t feel like they were nurtured or heard when they reached out for prayer or help. After praying about these comments, the leadership team felt they needed to lead the staff into a time of repentance and prayer. They weekly spent time in chapel repenting, praying and seeking God for next steps. Pursuing emotionally healthy principles grew out of that. The whole staff read “The Emotionally Healthy Leader” and broke into groups to discuss it, plus Rock Bridge Church organized a staff retreat to talk about staff development and dig deeper into the book together.Coaching environments. // As you journey toward spiritual and emotional health with your staff, some members of your team may need professional counseling to help them walk through hurts in their lives. Help them receive the counseling or coaching that they need. Hold them accountable to the emotionally healthy principles the staff agrees to, such as maintaining a sabbath. Have conversations of care and prayer in monthly one-on-one meetings.Redesign your dashboard. // Rock Bridge no longer focuses on Sunday, but rather on the Monday through Thursday that lead into the Sunday. Instead of the executive team dashboard focusing on numbers like attendance, they focus on hours spent in prayer, number of people in prayer groups, and new people recruited and engaged in ministry and outreach. Look at engagement and participation in those areas. Attendance will be a by-product of those things.Put the person first. // The greatest responsibility that God has given us to steward is other people, and when we steward and prepare them well then our ministry will multiply. At Rock Bridge the leadership has regular 15five conversations with each of the staff. These meetings open up focusing on how everyone and their families are doing, and how a manager can pray for them. Really listen to your staff and be present when they share their hearts – don’t simply look at it as a box to check. Ask your team how they are doing with their sabbath. Darrell also recommends using an E4 conversation: enlist, equip, empower, and encourage. Talk with each staff about who they used E4 with that week and what they did. Make your meeting more conversational and relational rather than just a monthly document you put in your files.Changes in leading a team virtually. // These team building exercises and monthly check-ins can still happen with your staff in spite of COVID. Convert things over to a virtual environment to teach the team how to handle the changes. Be more intentional and careful in your planning for the church and development of the team. Make personal calls to the people who attend your church to help reconnect with them and find out the needs that they may not be sharing in the regular church environment. Do some listening tours at your campuses and talk about emotional health, prayer and care. Connectivity in a digital world. // Darrell has offered a free document on relaunching as a remote staff that can help you lead more intentionally and connect in a digital world. It also helps you develop trust in your people and not micromanage what you don’t see.
You can learn more about Rock Bridge Community Church at rockbridge.cc. You can also download some of the resources Rock Bridge uses for their staff onboarding process, 15five coaching and encouragement, annual review prep and annual review template.
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Thank You to This Episode’s Sponsor: Leadership Pathway
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