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Books for those in ministry organizations who desire to take their leadership, teams, governance, and ministry effectiveness to the next level.

20 May '13

Are you an individual producer or organizational leader?

Posted by T.J. Addington

For those who lead organizations, whether churches or other ministries there is a crucial piece of information that is needed when hiring or placing individuals in ministry spots. That is understanding the distinction between an organizational leader - one who leads others - and an individual producer.

Organizational leaders are people who are wired to lead through other people. They are gifted in mobilizing healthy teams of people to tackle ministry opportunities. They work through the team, lead through the team and accomplish the ministry responsibilities they have through team. They love to mobilize, empower and develop other individuals.

Individual producers on the other hand are wired to have ministry impact through their own ministry initiatives. They need hands on ministry impact, like to develop things themselves, minister themselves, and do ministry themselves rather than leading through other people.

Why is an understanding of this distinction important? If you put an individual producer in the leadership of a team they will not develop their team or lead through their team but because of their wiring will revert to doing things themselves. This will result in weak team because the team is not the focus of an individual producers attention - personal ministry is. Team is secondary to an individual producer. Their attention is on what they can personally do.

This distinction is all about wiring - not about capacity or brightness. There are many exceedingly bright individual producers. They are simply not wired to lead others and putting them in that position produces frustration for them and often for those they lead. This is often a challenge for pastors, many of whom are really individual producers by wiring but find themselves needing to lead a team as the ministry grows.

People are either wired as individual producers or organizational leaders. The key is understanding the wiring of good people so that those who are wired for hands on ministry are not taken out of their wiring to lead through others. On the other hand, organizational leaders love to lead through others and will make their team the focus of their efforts.

Think about yourself - which are you really wired for? Think about your supervisor - which are they wired for?