I’ve suggested that people have trained themselves, over their lifetimes, as to how they respond to change. As a pastor, your job is to accurately assess where each of your key people are and lead them through change based on their individual change posture. In any community, you’ll find that people will posture themselves in one of three ways. Yesterday, we looked at “pioneers.”
The majority in any established congregation, however, are not pioneers. I call them “belongers.”
The belongers are also God’s gift to you! They build community. They are stabilizers. Many are wonderfully reliable workers in the bowels of your organization. But, over their lifetimes, they’ve trained themselves to move with the group, and not in front of it or behind it. It’s important for a belonger to fit in—or, more precisely, not to stand out.
Pioneers, by contrast, don’t care at all about fitting in. They’re not worried about standing out, because pioneers simply want to make a difference.
However, belongers are a different breed. Not bad. Not good. Just different. A belonger is willing to change when two conditions are met. Belongers will embrace change when they’re convinced that it is safe and successful to do so—and not before. And, herein is the rub. Pastors keep wanting their belongers to be on the leading edge of change.
The trouble is, they never have, and they never will!
-Kirk Kirlin, Leadership Courage more at www.KirlinCoaching.com/
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