goals

CRUSH Your 2018 Goals!

imgresHow can you not only meet, but exceed your goals for 2018?

Find a partner and use this GoalSettingGuide18 to help you discover your “Why?”… set your goals and then achieve them with confidence. This is a limited time offer so download it today and get on your way to realizing your goals for 2018!

You can do this! We can help.

Need a partner in life, ministry or organizational coaching? I would love to hear from you and discuss what a partnership might look like. Just let me know in the discussion feed below or email me at tompelt1@gmail.com and let’s get started!

31 Tips for 2016 – #18

Unknown-1Here is Tip # 18 for Ministry Leaders in 2016…

Watch your language.

Are you using “curse words” without even knowing it? We’re not talking about one of the infamous “4-letter words.” As a matter of fact, the worst one may just have only one letter… “I.”

When it comes to the power of the plural and how we frame our conversations, two examples come to mind…

Jordan Spieth has taken the professional golf world by storm. One of the youngest in history to win so much, so fast on the biggest stages in golf. Of course, those in the know have watched his career grow steadily from the junior golf tour to #1 in the world. How did he get there? It wasn’t overnight and he wasn’t alone. Just listen to a pre or post-round interview and he will tell you his secret, every time. No, it isn’t a magic move in his swing or hidden course strategy, it’s in the way he intentionally and consistently answers questions with… “We have been working on that over this past month…” “We have been trying that out and have plenty of room for improvement…”, etc. With Jordan, it’s almost always a “WE” thing. He includes his family, coaches, friends and fans in just about every conversation concerning his young and stellar career, giving and sharing the credit for the wins with others while personally shouldering the blame when things go wrong.

Peter and the other apostles learned this language as the early church struggled mightily and grew rapidly. Take Acts 15 for example… “We believe it is through the grace of our Lord Jesus that we are saved, just as they are.” (v11) “It is my judgment, therefore, that we should not make it difficult for the Gentiles who are turning to God. Instead we should write to them…” (v19-20) “Let us go back and visit the believers in all the towns where we preached the word of the Lord and see how they are doing.” (v36) Whether teaching, confronting, encouraging, or strategizing it was almost always a “WE” thing as the Spirit led the apostles in the rapid expanse of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

How do we frame our conversations as leaders? Let’s determine to create a culture where “WE” vision, work, pray, risk, fail, create, do-over, and keep on striving together with our lead teams and volunteers. Unless taking responsibility for how we’ve fallen short or failed to lead, let’s watch our language and use the “I” word sparingly,

We are truly better, together. Remember, its a “WE” thing! 

31 Tips for 2016 – #13

Unknown-1Here is Tip #13 for Ministry Leaders in 2016…

Less meetings. More conversations.

I wish I had figured this one sooner. My first ministry context had me sitting in on the Board of Trustees, Church Council, Board of Christian Education, Missions Committee and Music Committee. The meetings were as unnecessarily and painfully long as they were unproductive. I’ll never forget the evening when I rushed through yet another supper and headed for the door on a warm sunny evening. With my hand on the door knob my son grabs my leg and says, “Please, daddy, not another meeting!” I put down my brief case and picked up the phone to tell my vice-chairman they can carry on without me. We changed the culture going forward and I rode bikes more with my son… and enjoyed more conversations over pie and coffee. Win, win!

Hopefully you are in a far more streamlined and centralized structure that empowers both staff and lay-leadership (If not, call me and we’ll go down that road together!). Either way, the practical and momentum building truth of the matter is this… you can get more done in a conversation with one than you can in a meeting with many. 

If you are in a context where committee meetings are common, make it a priority to call a meeting to declare that meetings will become uncommon. I get that some of the business of being in ministry requires a meeting, a quorum and the requisite motion/second and “all in favor say, I.” However, I would wager that there are actually very few things that require a vote of the majority. Strive to make such meetings part of a purposed, monthly or even quarterly strategy.

In the meantime, let’s chat about the power of conversation…

  • Conversations focus. They are most often with one or maybe two individuals for a specific purpose. There is far less chance of someone “taking the floor” with a monologue that everyone knows is going nowhere.
  • Conversations empower. Empowered, energized people in conversation will get more done than meetings full of obligated, bored, I mean, board members.
  • Conversations deepen. Great teams are built on trusting relationships. And, trusting relationships thrive in environments where conversation is fluid and transparent.
  • Conversations invite. Just as a culture of formality and committee kills momentum and crushes creativity… conversations create momentum and inspire creativity. You can readily invite others who are passionate and gifted in a given area to enter into the conversation, whether or not they are elected to any “official” committee. It’s quite liberating!

Informal staff and team meetings over coffee are one thing, and so are creative & collaborative group sessions. But meeting just so you can say you met, or so everyone can be heard, where we all know little to nothing actually gets accomplished, is a waste of God-given time and talent. Stop it. Go rides bikes with your kids and talk about it with someone who can partner with you to get-it-done tomorrow.

In short, never call a meeting over something you can chat about. “All in favor say, “I.”

31 Tips for 2016 – #5

Unknown-1Here is your #5 Tip for 2016

Tip #5 – Have a monthly “delete day.”

Too much clutter kills creativity and crowds out clarity. While this applies to your workspace (and some of you out there who still use paper filing), I’m talking about your online footprint and that of others. It’s all those e-newsletters you receive, those daily tweets popping up on your phone, the ads, the inspirational devotional that once fueled your passion, that scholarly group you belong to but never contribute to, those reminders you set last month (or last year!) you thought you couldn’t do without.

Schedule a monthly time where you un-follow, unsubscribe and generally reduce the amount of information you don’t regularly use. Notice I said to “schedule” it? Like all healthy habits, we’ve got to be intentional.

How do you know what to trash and what to keep? Ask yourself, “Have I accessed and applied this information to my life in any substantive way?” “Have I passed this on to a team member or friend?” “Do I regularly contribute to this group?” If not, it’s got to go. Sure, we like to say we “follow” a lot of high profile leaders, and maybe keeping a few of them around is a good thing. However, less really can be more as you live and lead more lean than ever in 2016, uncluttered and unencumbered by the constant barrage of the latest and greatest.

Like a seasoned marathon runner, it’s time to live and lead leaner so you can go the distance in 2016. Let me be the first to wish you a “Happy Delete Day!”

The Promises of God

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“For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.” 2 Corinthians 1:20, NIV
The New Year is here and with it the hope and promise of God. This provides for us a sense of certainty in these uncertain times. Of course, we all make promises, sometimes calling them “resolutions.” I don’t know about you, but I have kept some and fallen woefully short on others. For example, even as I write I am sipping on a Diet Coke when I resolved last year to stop drinking dark colored sodas.
However, God keeps all His promises. Sometimes by saying “Yes!” and sometimes by saying “No” or just “Wait…” You see, even the “No” we receive today is only to provide a great big “YES!” for tomorrow. His promise to always protect and provide His children is fulfilled, not by depriving us of anything truly lasting and good, but by keeping us from settling for less than His best. What feels like an unanswered prayer, a “hurry up and wait” or even a “No!” is really the promise of God working out for our good and His glory.
What promises from God’s Word are you clinging to as the old year passes and 2015 begins? List 2-3 of those you will be counting on. Then, if you haven’t already, take the time to prioritize your own goals knowing that the promises of God will serve to fuel the faith needed to see them met and exceeded. Print out the 2015 Simple Goal Guide provided here…  SimpleGoalGuide
When it comes to the promises of God, this you can be sure of, “…they are “Yes” in Christ!” And you can say “Amen!” as day by day His promises are fulfilled in and through your life. The words of one of my favorite hymns reminds me, “Standing on the promises I cannot fail, when the howling storms of doubt and fear assail. By the living Word of God I shall prevail. Standing on the promises of God!” (Russel K Carter, 1849-1926)
Trust in the One who will keep His Word. He is Jesus, and His promises are “Yes!” in 2015.