I have to admit something…and it may even sound weird or strange to some of you, but I love change.
I absolutely love change…I tend to thrive in seasons of change.
One of the biggest reasons why I love change is because I can get bored pretty easily. I have the tendency to loose focus in the monotony of routine, and I get frustrated when seasons get stale.
I’m lucky to work in the small group world, because if there is one thing that is constant in groups, it’s change.
We change studies, group members, leaders, and all kinds of other things…and while change can be good because it can bring about a new, fresh season for a small group, it can also be difficult and even scary for some people at times.
So how do we as small group point peeps help people navigate change?
Today, I want to give what I believe are four simple ways you and your team can help not only navigate, but help lead people through seasons of change.
- Be Strategic
Proverbs 15:22 says, “Plans fall apart without proper advice; but with the right guidance, they come together nicely.”
If anything I’ve learned in leading people through change its that poor planning equals poor results. Establish a plan that is clear, easy to communicate, and executable. If you find yourself landing in the complex, simplify.
- Sell The Vision
Proverbs 29:18a says, “Where there is no vision from God, the people run wild…”
While casting vision is a giant piece in navigating change, getting people passionately on board and sold out to that vision is an even bigger piece.
Sometimes we’ll have the tendency when we face resistance to change to say things like:
- Our people “won’t”
- Our people “don’t”
- Our people “will never”
The reason your people won’t, don’t or will never, is because you haven’t lead them there yet.
Andy Stanley says it like this, “When a leader blames the follower for not following, the leader has ceased to lead. If the followers don’t get it, we probably haven’t delivered the vision in a way that makes it get-able.”
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Vision trumps everything and vision is where we are to lead people to in seasons of change.
90% of the time this is where change tends to fail. It’s usually the result of poor planning and lack of clarity with the vision.
I love how Seth Godin says it, “There’s no shortage of remarkable ideas, what’s missing is the will to execute them.”
If your plan is too complex and the vision is cloudy there is noting to execute. Go back to the planning stage and start over again.
- Listen to the critics…don’t validate the complainers
Jude 1:16 says, “These people are complainers who look long and hard to find the faults of other people.”
A critic has a critique; a complainer has a personal preference. Plain and simple…vision trumps preference every day of the week!
Our job as small group point people is to lead…we lead people through their personal preference and on to the bigger, more compelling vision.
Now let me say this, I think every plan and idea for change I have ever had is pretty much the best idea ever…and be honest, you probably feel the same way about your ideas as well.
The problem with this is that if other people don’t feel the same way about my ideas I can quickly turn into a complainer.
Plain and simple, all of our ideas need critiquing, because if we are not careful it’ll be our personal preference, not the vision that is the driving force behind them.
When it comes to change, both as an organization, and as an individual I think Reinhold Neibuhr say’s it best, “Change is the essence of life. Be willing to surrender what you are for what you could become.”
As small group point peeps we have the awesome opportunity to see people come to this point of surrender and help them navigate their way through the seas of change.