The Need: Maximize Pastoral Leadership and Management Skills
“Our research clearly demonstrates that effective ministers…have developed significantly more leadership and managerial skills than less effective ministers.”
Butler, D.M. and Herman, R.D. (1999). Effective Ministerial Leadership. Nonprofit Management & Leadership, 9(3), 237.
Pastors with the gift of leadership had the highest level of satisfaction and fulfillment from their ministry, as well as the lowest levels of stress.
Barna, G. (1993). Today’s Pastors. Ventura, CA: Regal Books. 127.
One of the core challenges many pastors face is a misalignment in leadership expectations between themselves and their congregations, often finding themselves as the CEO and CFO of a small to medium-sized non-profit organization in addition to the more traditional pastoral roles that they may feel more called to and more comprehensively trained to perform. In fact, for a number of reasons the leadership path that pastors must navigate can be far more complex and dynamic than in secular fields, often creating significant stress and considerable dissatisfaction.
Few pastors feel they have particular gifts or sufficient training in leadership and management. As a result, many clergy find leadership, managerial and administrative responsibilities to be personally and professionally draining, and often far more time consuming than they would like.
If the leadership and managerial components of your role detract from the satisfaction or effectiveness of your calling, or if you often find yourself more stressed or anxious about leading and managing than you do preaching, providing pastoral care or other aspects of your pastorate, it may be important to prayerfully consider leadership and management development as an essential element of your pastoral “self-care.”