Skills

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The Problem with Being an Authentic Leader

The delicate balance of authenticity and confidentiality in leadership.
The Problem with Being an Authentic Leader
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Coco Chanel put it best: “Hard times arouse an instinctive desire for authenticity.” The political and marketing arenas have picked up on this need to be genuine. Entrepreneur Magazine exposed the trend of millennial women using the power of the purse to send a message, which has in effect, changed the way companies brand their products. The author writes, “Millennial ...

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Use Your Strength to Serve Others

How to gracefully embrace your role as the strongest person in the room
Use Your Strength to Serve Others
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There I was, halfway through a meeting, when I suddenly realized I had done it again. Without meaning to, I’d become the de facto leader of the group, and everyone was looking at me. I could see clearly that everyone realized I was now in charge. But they weren’t all happy about it.

For one thing, I was a woman—and we all know not everyone is happy when women ...

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When Others Question Your Leadership

Parents in my children’s ministry questioned my authority because I wasn’t a mom.
When Others Question Your Leadership
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Fresh out of graduate school and looking like I had just graduated from high school, I jumped into a church staff role as director of children’s ministry. I had the education, the prior internship, and the experience working with kids. I was ready to make an impact. But I forgot to consider one thing: the assumption that because I didn’t have kids, I couldn’t ...

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How to Prepare for Speaking at a Conference

What I’ve learned from 15 years of speaking at various events.
How to Prepare for Speaking at a Conference
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All I remember is saying an emphatic yes—over and over again.

I couldn’t believe my luck: 23-year old me had been asked to be the keynote speaker at a weekend conference. But as months went by and the event got closer, my usual last-minute way of operating in life didn’t pan out. I spent the weekend stressed out, working long hours, and sleeping little, leaving ...

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Should You Take on More?

5 questions to decide if projects outside your role are right for you
Should You Take on More?
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How often do you hear requests like this:

  • Can you help us?
  • You would be perfect to lead this.
  • It won’t take long.
  • We need you!

As leaders, these tempt us to say “yes” to projects beyond our regular responsibilities. Since many extracurricular opportunities in ministry (and beyond—like volunteering at school, being a team mom, leading a food drive, etc.) ...

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Five Ways to Invest in the Next Generation of Leaders

Practical tips for raising up more women in ministry
Five Ways to Invest in the Next Generation of Leaders
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Editor’s Note: In honor of International Women’s Day today, we’re publishing this practical article on developing the next generation of women leaders for ministry. Whatever your role, young women in your church are looking to you as a role model. What a privilege and honor to invest in them and watch God grow and develop them into amazing leaders. —Amy ...

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Six Tips for Taking Center Stage

Make a smooth transition from associate to lead pastor.
Six Tips for Taking Center Stage
Image: iStock

With the last child in college, I dreamed of spontaneous weekend getaways with my husband. I planned out more hours for writing. I suddenly had a clean house all the time. It was my time. I could have nice things.

Then our lead pastor left for another position, and I (the associate) knew God was calling me to step into that role. I tried to explain to him that this transition ...

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Boundaries for Part-Time Ministry

9 steps to set healthy limits
Boundaries for Part-Time Ministry
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When I meet or have the opportunity to coach people with part-time jobs in ministry, I often ask how many hours they work each week and how many they’re paid for. Almost everyone responds with a chuckle. Many have given up on trying to do the job in the hours they were hired for. The whole idea is almost a joke.

But what’s not funny is the effect this discrepancy ...

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How to Be the Elephant in the Room

Is it possible to be yourself, or should you become “one of the guys”?
How to Be the Elephant in the Room
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Esther is my hero. Thankfully, I’m rarely called to put my life on the line by entering a king’s presence uninvited. I do, however, often look to Esther for courage when I am called to step into rooms where I don’t feel comfortable.

Last week I received an invitation to a breakfast meeting for local lead pastors. I glanced over the recipients of the email ...

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The Most Important Thing to Do When You Start with a New Team

Don’t skip this critical first step.
The Most Important Thing to Do When You Start with a New Team
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Stepping into a new leadership role can bring a rush of excitement. When God provides an opportunity, my natural inclination is to jump in full force. In my eagerness to get started, however, I may overlook the critical first step—developing an atmosphere of trust within the group.

Have you ever been appointed to a leadership position, only to be met with opposition? ...

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