Why Get a Leadership Coach?
Church can be the most amazing place in the world. As we live out our call to co-create the Kingdom of God, church is a place where we really can value love over power and relationship over material goods, crafting beautiful communities where we live and learn together. As we worship collectively, church is enriching and life-giving.
As leaders of these communities, we face particular challenges as we lead counter to a mainstream culture that does not operate according to these same values. Tensions can develop and difficulties emerge as people are their very human selves with flaws. And so there is a balance between our vision of a beautiful community and the reality of the pain and bad habits also present in any group of human beings. Church leaders often are right in the fulcrum of this balance and can benefit from support to maintain a healthy and thriving ministry and self.
Leaders of all kinds typically find it helpful to have a sounding board- an outside perspective that helps them stay true to their vision and not get sucked into the complex dynamics that can weigh a community down. It’s helpful to have that ‘sounding board’ person come from outside your community or family with no stake in any outcome.
Priests of smaller congregations also often have to play a very wide variety of roles in addition to spiritual and pastoral leadership: financial, operational, strategic, management and human resources. Coaches can offer technical assistance in these areas or help you discern when to ask for help.
While we might have been trained in principles of leadership, it is sometimes hard to translate academic lessons to lived reality. A side-by-side mentor can help you apply what you know intellectually to your congregational leadership.
How does Coaching Work?
Coaches typically meet with you weekly for an hour for a set period of time (3-6 months) at which point the coaching relationship is re-evaluated. Sometimes it continues many years and other times a set goal is achieved and the coaching can feel complete.
Coaching is not therapy and it is not spiritual direction. The goal of coaching is to help you be clear on your goals for yourself and/or your congregation, then help you consider how best to overcome any barriers and live to your potential and your vision. Most serious athletes and musicians would never consider competing or performing without a coach and your leadership deserves the same attention!
If you are interested in exploring our coaching services, please contact the Director for Congregational Development, The Rev. Alissa Newton. She will talk with you about what you are looking for and help match you with one of our coaches.