One of the highest callings in Christian leadership is to be in a position where one must discern the character, gifts, skills and abilities of others and direct them to a meaningful, purposeful, and fulfilling ministry. God’s call in our life is always to be in a context where we can grow in him and effectively serve him, using the gifts and talents that he has given us to serve his Kingdom communities (the Church) and be a witness to his compassion and love.
Therefore, one of the most important tasks of a leader is discerning proper placement for the service of those they lead. (I Corinthians 12). And then to mentor, develop and coach them in that spot.
Many leaders do not understand either the priority or the value of making a significant investment in their staff. From a priority standpoint, the better one's staff, and the better they are positioned for success and the better they are developed and empowered, the more missional success your ministry will achieve. Because ministry happens through people, the larger your ministry the less it will be directly impacted by you and the more it will be impacted by others. Therefore your investment in others becomes one of your most critical tasks.
From a value standpoint, staff who are invested in to help them grow, develop and work from their strengths, not only become better but they become deeply loyal to your organization.
As I have reflected on the senior level leaders in our organization who oversee many others it is my conviction that at least 25% of their time must be spent in the development, coaching, mentoring and placement of people so that they reach their full potential.
I believe that senior pastors have the same obligation with their staff, leaders and volunteers. The best ministries are those that have a huge commitment to develop and release their staff in line with the gifting God has given them.
The largest inhibitor to this practice is that many of us did not go into ministry to develop others but to do ministry ourselves. Thus as our leadership position grows or our ministry grows we continue to do ministry rather than making the fundamental shift to a leadership role of developing our staff for their maximum success - and therefore for your maximum success!
Take a look at your calendar and ask the question, in the course of my month, how much time do I spend in the mentoring, developing and coaching of those who report to me or to my larger staff (if some report to you through others). Many of us would find that we spend very little time in that arena yet it is one of the most important things we should be doing. How are you doing?