The Heart and Attitude for a Great Event

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1.  Know the why behind the what.

a lot of the time we focus on what we need to do and how we need to do it, not realizing the real motivation for those who are working with us is the why.  
WHY ARE WE DOING THIS?  
WHAT IS OUR PURPOSE IN THIS? WHAT IS THE VISION FOR THIS?  
WHAT ARE THE OUTCOMES THAT WE WANT?

How do we clarify and reiterate the why?  Analogies, & explanations.  

This is not a waste of time but rather the best use of our time.  

Most people will retain what and how to do something more readily if they know the WHY.

2.  Clarify and Communicate

If we are not clear with our vision, people will create their own for our event.

. -Andy Stanley

Can it be clarified in simple terms? How many steps are there?  
Are there any hidden meanings?  
Are their any assumptions?

Communication is mutual understanding. Talking and listening are conversation.  You have communicated when both parties understand the same thing.

3.  Same Page meetings

Have meetings with each dept involved seperately and together on a regular consistant basis, leading up to the event.

Have a time line that includes everything.  Start from the date of the event and walk backwards, include a dead day.

Use the tools at your disposal.  email, facebook groups, text groups etc.

Keep everyone in the loop.  

Nothing is lost by keeping everyone in the loop but everything can be lost of a significant person is out of the loop.

4.  Create the Wow Factor

Wow is the unexpected positives.  
people leave saying wow, I never expected that to happen at this event.

Over and above excellence always translates to Care.  

5.  Finishing well is more important than starting well.

Most organizations do ok with the pre planning and pulling off of events, where they fail is finishing strong.  

Once the high point of the event is over, the air goes out and we all go our seperate ways, and there is a lot left to do.  

Especially in church things where follow up, and finishing up can be the most important.

Your team can lose morale at this point, and not perform well the next time as a result.

Start as a team, run as a team, finish as a team.

6.  Keep notes and debrief

Keep notes on everything you do start to finish. You can refer back to it and not have to repeat every time, and you can know what you need to change.  Its amazing what you can forget in this process.

Take the time after an event to talk over what was good, what was great, what was not so good and what was bad.

Evaluate, think solutions, keep record of it for the next time.

7.  Excellence is an attitude.

Using what you have to the best of your ability.

Excellence never says thats good enough.

Excellence always says, what more can we do, how can we make it better?

8.  Create a basic system that is general to all events, that can be specified for each event.

No reason to reinvent the wheel with every event. Good systems can be the difference between success and failure

Worthless Treasure

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I love people. More than that, one of my favorite things to do as a leader is discover and develop the potential in a persons life. 

I truly care about the people I lead. I do my best (not always perfect at it) but I do try to invest in, care about and develop them to live a more fulfilled life. 

I’ve had the privilege for 25 years to occupy my life with this endeavor. At times I’ve had success and others times I’ve failed. 

Having had this many years working with people I have learned a few things. One thing I have seen over and over again is people, including myself, at times have failed to reach their potential because of insecurity. Insecurity buries potential beneath the rubble of fear. 

It is my contention that potential is like buried treasure inside each of us. It’s great to know you have wealth and treasure hidden away somewhere but it has very little value when it’s buried. To see the value in treasure you spend it or invest it or even save it for a later purpose but to simply bury it away and then claim to be wealthy is a farce. I submit to you the proof of the pudding is in the eating. 

Potential, our buried treasure, needs to be dug up and used, but we hide it away for fear it won’t be accepted. We bury it because we are afraid we will look foolish, or that someone will think that we are acting like we are better than them. 

The fear of the lack of people’s approval, the fear of rejection, the fear of losing everything, so we gain nothing by doing nothing. 

Layers and layers of insecurity burying the treasure, God given I might add, that gives our life value and meaning. 

So yes we have treasure, but it has no worth because it’s hidden. It’s worthless treasure. I can’t think of anything more sad. 

I encourage you get a shovel, take a risk and start throwing the dirt of insecurity off of your dream, dig it up, and start investing in life. I believe worth and value will flood your life and you will be confident to produce your potential, once you use your potential by clearing away the thief of insecurity.

The Isolation of Insecurity

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Proverbs 18:1 He who isolates himself, rages against all wise judgement and seeks his own desire.

When I think of this text or even just the idea of isolation, the culprit that comes to mind is insecurity.

It seems to me that insecurity’s ultimate end is isolation. If I fear rejection, if I am threatened by others, if I am guided by the approval or disapproval of people the ultimate end for me is isolation. It may not be total isolation, or even physical isolation, at minimum it will be emotional and relational isolation.

Not getting out of relationships what you could. Not doing as well as you could on a career path. Possibly finding independence but interdependence seems to avoid you all together.

If we truly look at insecurity, it involves us in pettiness, and pretense. Insecurity refuses to hear what wise voices say, it rages against the judgement of those trying to help.

It is such a contradiction. Needing peoples approval but being so insecure or afraid of rejection, we want people to approve but will not acknowledge that we need them. Thereby isolating ourselves from true, vulnerable friendships.

Insecurity seeks self, is focused on self, is centered around self, and cares only for self.

An unhealthy obsession with self will result in a self implosion, which is the ultimate result of insecurity.

How do we avoid the isolation of insecurity?

1. See people as partners, not competitors.
>Realize interacting with others even competitors can build you and
make you stronger if you take the right perspective. Don’t be
threatened, be inspired.

2. Learn to learn from others.
>Don’t be so busy trying to impress with what you know, that you miss
opportunity to learn something you don’t know.

3. Make it about purpose not about self.
>practice making things about the goal and not about the person.
EVERYTHING IS NOT ABOUT YOU. Know it, believe it, achieve it.

The sad thing about insecurity is that a lot of people who are highly insecure also have a high level of potential, and are incredibly talented. It grieves me to see potential greatness defeated before it really gets started over foolishness like jealousy, fear of failure, negativity, disrespect and approval addiction. Ultimately ending up alone, disconnected, realizing that what they feared has come upon them.

Be the you God intended when He created you with all your specific gifts, talents, personality and potential. Focus on that and you will find confidence not in your own abilities but in the purpose and power of God.

Leaders Empower People

Leadership is not easy. There is so much talk about it in our culture, so much teaching on it now that it’s almost assumed it’s nothing more than being inspiring, quoting some good phrases and cheering people on.

While those are definite characteristics of leadership any good leader knows they are a miniscule part.

I recently had a thought, “I have found as a leader, no matter the situation, it’s always better to be empowering than controlling.”

After leading for 25 years and observing some great leaders I believe it’s true.  However it’s harder to do than to say.

There are some prerequisites to empowerment.

To empower you must…

1. Know those you lead.

     To see empowerment as a method flippintly employed by a leader to create momentum or growth would be a mistake. You cant just empower anyone. You have to know your team and if they’re ready to be empowered.
2. Trust has to be developed.

You may release someone to run with something, but if you don’t trust you will ultimately swoop in and take control. No trust, no real empowerment.

3. Good communication

Full empowerment with anything less than great communication will end up in a missed target and wasted energy.

4. Clarity

If what your empowering for is not entirely clear, it’s a set up for failure.

Some people think empowerment equals an atmosphere of no accountability and spastic chaos. Not so. True empowerment is focused and intentional before, so you don’t have to take back control after.

Leaders who can’t or won’t get to know their team, develop trust, communicate well, or be clear will never effectively empower people. They will attempt to control everything, limit their influence, become frustrated and stressed.

Lets do the pre-work and then release our team to fly.

3 Killers of Team Spirit.

Sarcasm, criticism, cynicism

Sarcasm– Pronunciation: \ˈsär-ˌka-zəm\
Function: noun
Etymology: French or Late Latin; French sarcasme, from Late Latin sarcasmos, from Greek sarkasmos, from sarkazein to tear flesh, bite the lips in rage, sneer, from sark-, sarx flesh; probably akin to Avestan thwarəs- to cut

1 : a sharp and often satirical or ironic utterance designed to cut or give pain 2a : a mode of satirical depending for its effect on bitter and often ironic language that is usually directed against an individual b : the use or language of sarcasm

Criticism-Main Entry: crit·i·cism
Pronunciation: \ˈkri-tə-ˌsi-zəm\

1 a : the act of criticizing usually unfavorably b : a critical observation or remark

Cynicism-implies having a sneering disbelief in sincerity or integrity. Pessimistic, distrustful

It seems in our day that these three words are a way of life, and many in the church are teaching this as a philosophy. There is this idea that we should question everything, distrust everyone, and have a cutting sharp attitude in the name of humor.

Don’t get me wrong I believe that we should try the spirits as the Bible says, we shouldn’t just follow everything and everyone blindly but this attitude of cynicism that has us questioning even the validity of the Bible and truth has gone too far and is destroying people. In most cases this attitude is predicated on a cultural and moral relativism that does its best to wipe out substantial truth and replace it with experiential understanding.

Bottom line is cynicism, sarcasm and criticism are incredibly negative concepts and give birth to doubt not faith.

Should we evaluate? Yes! Should we be constantly critical? No

For teams to work together and make progress there has to be a high level of faith in the cause, the team members and an honoring of leadership. This evil trinity stifles all of that.

Lets drop this negativity and doubt and instead be encouraging, trusting and edifying. That’s what builds teams and brings positive change.

Challenging authority, doubting truth, and criticizing others only locks you in to a non learning environment and comes from a dogmatic know it all spirit.

If you want your team to thrive, confront these attitudes and replace them with faith.

That’s effective team spirit.

Thunder Up!

So sorry for the loss, and I know statistically what needs to be done has never been done, but I believe the Thunder will do it.

Our whole season people have counted us out, that’s fine. We’ve dug ourself a bit of a whole but now we will climb out of it. Please don’t be stupid and ridicule Westbrook for a mistake made that was easy to make. His game was unbelievable!

Just my thoughts from here in africa.

We are on the bus headed out to the work site, a little tired from getting up so early but worth it to support the team.

Kampala Uganda is like the city that never sleeps, hustle and bustle all Around. We love the people here, and believe that working with Watoto is really making a difference.

Team is doing well. We are in the end, should finish work today. Dedicate the building tomorrow. Will have pics. Then for lots of fun last few days. Looking forward to an ATV safari.

Have missed my girls last few days. Hug em for me if you see them.

Have a great day!

Team is One

I love the thunders philosophy “team is one.” it’s a a true statement if we truly understand team.

Unfortunately in our day our thinking could be more aptly described “the one is the team.”

So many people take the approach that “this is my world, you all just get to live in it.” Which is the antithesis to the Gospel message and to the way the body of Christ should work.

I’m truly burdened by the spirit of celebrity in the church today and I really believe we are setting ourselves up for a lose/lose scenario if we continue to give men the glory that belongs to God.

I truly believe in honoring our leaders and know that there is favor when we honor everyone around us but when we move to an unhealthy place of celebrity worship, even in the church we miss the point entirely. Let’s honor, but let’s realize we are all a part of the same team and the team is one.

This trip, each member has played their role without worrying about the roles of others. All pulling together, honoring one another. We’ve earned a lot and God has used us to impact lives. It’s so powerful when you realize in the kingdom the team is one and it is world wide.