John’s small 50 member business had been cruising just fine, or at least it seemed that way. They were not setting sales records, but the bills were paid, and a little extra was being set aside for renovation. John and his leadership team had put more money into their budget for promotion in the past two years any time in the organizations history. The organization’s theme had become “Take Care of The Client”. Cause every potential client to believe the organization truly cared for the client. With business going fairly well, John could not understand why there seemed to be infighting among employees and leadership, why employee morale was in such decline, and why more new customers were not sticking.
Leaders and organizations often focus on production with little attention to relationships within the organization. If you do not have some focus on new clients, members, volunteers, you will never reach new heights or increase production and effectiveness. However, focusing only on the client, does not breed healthy environments. Unhealthy environments will always lead to disparagement, low morale, and loss of people.
Every organization needs a balance between new business (sales, production, new members) and relationships inside the organization. The lack of recognition of the importance of relationships within an organization will stifle production, stunt growth, and ambush effectiveness. “Without good relationships, the organization will begin to lose its best people, and the results will decline.” Ken Blanchard, Leading at a Higher Level, pg 198
Effective organizations have found the path to effectiveness includes both promotion of production and healthy internal relationships. Developing a highly effective organization is an ongoing journey, not a quick trip to the super market. As a leader or member, you must be in this for the long haul. You build up to the effectiveness desired, designing around production and relationships as a synergy – one building off the other. Then you keep rethinking, planning ahead, observing both the good and bad of today’s production and relationships to drive the organization to the next level of effectiveness and relationships. The way to sustain effective production is to continually learn and grow through both the current positive happening and those areas that need work.
One of the absolute best leadership tools I have ever seen, heard and learned is Ken Blanchard’s Situational Leadership. I was privileged to have gone through this training while serving in retail management. More than any other, this concept changed – revolutionized leadership for me – and I was blessed to learn it 30 years ago. Understanding leadership styles and personal development is key to effectiveness in leading and growing individuals and organizations. Understanding how these two concepts interact is crucial to developing effective employees, volunteers, and organizational health.
Unfortunately, there is not enough room in a blog post to cover these. Yet, you can begin by understanding how to strengthen relationships within your organization and intertwining those relationships with the effective production of your organizations purpose. Contact me for more information or look up some of The Blanchard Group’s information on Situational Leadership II. (It is not a quick fix and reading one source on it will not get you to the level you desire. It takes time to study, read, and learn. Then you must continue to study and practice the principles and habits therein.
Jesus was so relationship driven that people came from regions all around to meet and spend time with Him. What is your first step of strengthening the relationships in your organization (church) and intertwining those with the purpose of your church (organization)?