Leadership Workshop

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Leadership Workshop

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Leadership Workshop

Winnetka Congregational Church, March 10, 2013


Goals for Workshop

Building our team, relationships and trust as leaders of WCC

Updating where we are in the strategic planning process; sharing learning from Assessment Report and WCC review and discussion of Report

Identifying key challenges/ priorities for the 2020 Vision/ Strategic Plan


Overview of Workshop

Team/ relationship building exercises

Life-Cycles of Churches presentation

Review of Assessment, 5 Key Themes

Break/ Dinner

Key Challenges Conversation

What’s Next in the Strategic Plan process


Ground Rules

Speak your mind and heart

Speak for yourself

Listen with interest and curiosity to others

Avoid interruptions and side conversations

Listen together for the guidance and prompting of the Holy Spirit


Prayer and Discernment

What distinguished Congregationalists has been the conviction that no one person (be it Pope, King or Bishop) had all the tools needed to discern God’s will; but rather God’s will is best discerned in the gathered community of faith.

When the early Congregationalists gathered it was not to decide the will of the majority, but to discern the guidance of the Spirit and the mind of Christ


Exercise # 1

Partner up with someone you don’t know or don’t know well and explore the following questions:

Why did you want to be a part of this congregation when you joined?

What needs did this congregation meet for you? Your family?

What holds you here today?


Exercise # 2

Around the hall you will posted see eleven quotes.

Circulate reading as many as you wish.

Pick one that speaks to you and stand there.

Talk with those who gathered at that quotation, sharing what about it speaks to you and listening to others share about the same.


A look at church life-cycles

Helps to order reality, not predict it

Four key tracking qualities

E = energy

I = inclusion

P = program

A = administration


Life-Cycle Exercise

Make a mark where you would locate WCC

Share your observation with those in your group

Listen to what others have come up with, without comment or debate


Review of Work to Date

The Assessment Report – a few comments from Tony

Reports from SPC members on the 5 Themes and congregational input

Leadership Transition

Growing in Faith





Technical Problems/ Adaptive Challenges

Problem/ Challenge



Who Does the Work?



Problem is known and clear


is known and clear



Adaptive Challenge

Defining work/ challenge requires learning

and change


response requires learning, change, risk

The people


the challenge


Key Challenges/ Opportunities Before WCC

I will go through all, providing brief explanation, taking questions for clarification

A few words about a useful concept: “managing polarities.”

You will have the opportunity to suggest changes and to add additional key challenges, before we prioritize

Remember that to be actionable we need to -- and will -- take further steps, beyond priorities to strategies


Key Challenge # 1

Leadership Transition/ Transitions. Planning for Senior Pastor transition. Looking at different models for that transition. Developing time frames.

Consultation with other staff members regarding their own plans .


Key Challenge # 2

Ensuring that


strengths stay strong during a transition period

Identifying key ministries/ programs – strengths we don’t want to lose or jeopardize

Developing staffing and lay leadership plans for transition


Key Challenge # 3

From a more generic community church identity with a high historic emphasis to a clear, compelling and more contemporary sense and statement of WCC identity, purpose (mission) and core values.


Examples (for illustration not discussion)

In every way, in every setting, GROWTH IN FAITH

To grow people of faith who participate in God’s work in the world

To welcome people to faith, to equip people with a faith that works in the real world, to send people to serve in Christ’s name

To be a church where Spirit and Service come together in risky and amazing ways


Key Challenge # 4

From “all people” to identifying


target audience, those we “hyper-serve”


Key Challenge # 5

“Upping Our Game” as WCC members

From broad or vague expectations/definitions of membership (“being a good person, being involved”) to a higher level of mutual expectation (discipleship)

Areas of mutual expectation might include worship participation, spiritual practices, involvement in a small group or service ministry, giving/ stewardship


Key Challenge # 6

From internal focus (meeting the needs of our members) to a new – renewed – outward orientation (engaging, responding to the needs of our community).

Not only trying to get people to come to us, but more going to them.



Key Challenge # 7

From primary emphasis on faith formation of children and youth to faith growth/ development for all ages and stages.

Going deeper

From “civic faith” to changing/ transforming lives

Particular focus on the un and de-churched, on empty nesters, on “spirituality for the second half of life”


Review/Re - Work

Changes? What re-phrasing/ re-writing would you suggest?

Add? What additional ‘key challenges’ would you suggest?

Drop? Are there ‘key challenges’ you would omit/ drop?

Note: while we want your comments and suggestions, we will not attempt to wordsmith these key challenges here and now


Prioritization Exercise

You have five dots/ votes

You may allocate your dots/ votes among the key challenges any way you like: five on one, one on five, two on one and one on three, etc.


Next Steps

What’s next in Strategic Planning process?

Review of tonight’s conversation/ input

Draft of Strategic Plan with priorities and strategies

Review of draft, revisions

Keeping congregation in the loop

Presentation of 2020 Vision (late

April or May)


An Evaluation Exercise

Too much challenge?

Just right amount of challenge?

Too little challenge?




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