Wow. What a ride! I've spent the last two days in South Barrington at Willow's Leadership Summit and they had a great lineup this year.
I'm not going to detail all of the session because there are a lot of posts that do a better job of covering that. [Tim Stevens and Tony Morgan are just two great examples] But I do want to explore some ideas Jim Collins had in his session, When Business Thinking Fails the Church.
Now first, I loved the book Good to Great and sent out many copies of the monograph Good to Great and the Social Sectors once it hit the stands. And I think it's fair to state there are a lot of differences between business and ministry, economic drivers, yada, yada. I'm on board with all of those principles and agree they make total sense.
But I think the key is not throwing the baby out with the bathwater when it comes to looking at business best practices.
Big business corporations are a completely different animal, but startup companies and ministries have a LOT of similarities and require the same innovative, entreprenuerial thinking to thrive. "Architecting conditions that enable decisions to be made" is exactly what's needed in the early stages of ANY organization when there is no "concentrated executive power" to be had. We have a vision of doing something great, and need to work like crazy to convince others to get on the bus as well. There's no money, no fancy building, no sterling reputation to fall back on. Just the vision God gave us beating fast in our hearts and the ability to see how it could meet people's needs.
And I'd love to know the success ratio of startup companies [that are not funded by venture capitalists] to church plants. I know there are a lot of bad businesses out there, but it seems there's still a lot that could be applied in the ministry world & wonder if our problem is that we've been afraid to wade too deeply in those waters because it seems "not biblical."
Jim was so dead on when he said our work is too important to entrust it to the wrong people. I think the same thinking applies with how we build it as well. If we start something and it dies because we didn't apply the best the world has to offer, does it matter?