Before calling people to action, we must give them Biblical reasons. I call it developing a conviction. I can either move people to action through negative motivation and control or I can do it in a way that develops their heart with God. For people to serve without grumbling, they must have a Biblical conviction. They must come to see that serving is a part of giving their life for the Gospel. They must see and believe the benefits that will come to them as a result of serving. Most important, we want them to serve out of their love for God and people.
When people serve, they must never see themselves as volunteers. There should be no Minister-Layman dichotomy. They must see their role as being just as essential as any other person. They must see themselves as staff. They must understand that there are paid staff and non-paid staff. They should feel special about the fact that they are giving their time. They are the ones making the real sacrifice, not those who are paid to do it!
Take every team member through a thorough orientation and training. Never ask a person to know what you have not taught them. Never ask them to navigate without a map. Let them know everything that will be expected, how everything will be done, and how they can get the support they need!
A close friend of mine who runs a publishing company always says, “Inspect what you expect.” Never assume that a person has done what you have asked. There should always be meaningful, measurable reporting and evaluation of the task. To depend on someone for an important task without sufficient follow through could leave you standing on a foot out of joint when you really need to be mobile!
Reporting provides a great time for additional training. It helps us realize what they failed to understand and it provides a hands-on way to teach them what we really want and expect. But most importantly, it keeps us from reaching a deadline only to discover someone didn’t complete his or her task!
In the absence of meaningful leadership, good people go bad! Realize that people need leadership. I often hear leaders make negative remarks about people’s ability to make decisions or understand the task. That is extreme short sightedness on the part of a leader. If they had those skills, there would be no need for our skills. The things we do well create weaknesses in us that makes us need them. We all need one another. We need to realize that we all provide a part of what it takes to make the team function smoothly.
More importantly than all these, develop your people skills. Understand people! Understand how they communicate. Understand how to motivate them. Know people better than they know themselves.
Read Part 1 of this letter HERE.