How to Build Entrepreneurial Ministry Teams. Church staff regularly request our recommendations regarding which personality profiles and leadership style profiles are best suited for the various leadership roles within their church. On the surface this may seem like an easy service AssessME should provide. But, in reality, it is not so obvious.
Why? Because of the influence imposed by Organizational Personality. Every church possesses a unique Organizational Personality that defines their core systemic values. Each temperament exhibited by the key influencers within a church combine to form its unique Organizational Personality. The result: Some churches are very corporate in style, while other churches are very relational, still other churches are highly artistic. These are only a few examples of differences that impact the mobilization process. (NOTE: The proven Meyer-Briggs construct can also apply to Organizational Personality to identify 16 potential organizational types). This variety hinders our use of a one-size-fits-all team building solution. However, there are common principles and practices church leaders should learn and apply so that they can effectively mobilize ministry teams. Today, let’s examine How to Build Entrepreneurial Ministry Teams.
Four Basic Ministry Team-Types
At a basic level, temperament theory suggests there are a minimum of four categories of ministry teams. These categories are not based upon titles such as “Youth Leader”, but rather upon the fundamental functions practiced by our One God, expressed through three personalities: 1) Creative/Entrepreneurial Ministry Teams, 2) Human Resource Management Teams, 3) Task/Systems Management Teams, and 4) Human Care & Recovery Teams. For practicality sake, we divide the Administrative/Management function between management of people and management of tasks.
- Entrepreneurial Ministry Team
- Human Resource Management Team
- Task & Systems Management Team
- Human Care Team
How to Build The Entrepreneurial Team
Regardless of the ministry department (Children’s Ministry, Teen Ministry, Outreach Ministry, etc.), whenever your church desires to start a new ministry program, recast and implement a new ministry vision, or start a new church, you will want to learn How to Build Entrepreneurial Ministry Teams. Entrepreneurial leaders and ministry teams can do wonders for any church or program, IF they are allowed the freedom to create, and receive support from fellow leaders who are not threatened by their strong personalities and immense capacity for casting vision. This team-type, like all others, should be comprised of a Three-Strand-Cord team of leader-members. In our present case, the Ministry Team’s entrepreneurial purpose will define the kinds of people that will comprise this leadership-team.
Entrepreneurial Team Lead
When your church leadership seeks to build Entrepreneurial Ministry Teams, the Team Lead should include an individual with a Leadership Style of “Pioneer” and an ePersonality profile consisting of one of the following: Designer, Planner, Creator, or Super Leader. Which is best suited for your church and your particular team mission? Well, this is where you will require discernment from the Holy Spirit. In all honesty, I believe AssessME.org would do damage to many ministries if we bypassed your responsibility to discern God’s will and purpose by forcing a one-size-fits-all solution for team building. Each of the listed profiles include entrepreneurial abilities. Look at the bulleted summaries of each profile below and ask yourself, which kind of Entrepreneurial Leader would I likely select for for a given open position?
Creators like to do ministry as it has never been done before. New practices, new systems, new procedures. Creators are often driven by a unique vision which may clash with establishment leadership. However, they will gather data and develop strategies to prove the validity of their ministry dream.
Designers are good organizers and systems planners. In essence, they want to first develop an accepted blueprint
for the ministry to be developed, but once it is developed, they get quickly frustrated if establishment leaders do not get onboard with the blueprint. They have a small relational pool, so their ability to persuade others may be limited.
Planners are one of the rarest temperament types. They are truly visionary and can perceive all the steps necessary to build for the next five years or more. They think in process, systems, and strategy, and can pull people together to support a noble vision. Obtaining the vision is the goal and glue that holds the Planner’s ministry team together. The Planner excels at positioning the right people in the right roles. The Planner will follow-through relentlessly pursuing his/her strategic plan.
Super Leaders are leaders of leaders. This temperament is the most relational of the four entrepreneurial types. Super Leaders are the least visionary, but ably pull the necessary people together to accomplish the new ministry objective. Strong at strategic planning, they are also ardent change-agents…everything can always be done better. Their perfectionism creates high standards that quality leaders will want to strive to uphold, but may cause lesser leaders may grumble and complain.
There are certainly similar qualities within each of the four entrepreneurial temperaments, but also some distinct differences. Another way to evaluate the differences in each profile is to look at their ePersonality graph scores.
Graph Score Evaluation
How I Relate to People
Please evaluate the bar graphs. Note that the Creator and Super Leader are solid “Social” people on the “
How I Relate to People” dichotomy. While social people will be more pleasant to work with, they will not likely be as strong in the area of strategic planning and systems development. Social people like to relate to other people through “being with” them; whereas Independent people prefer to relate to other people by “working with” them…relationships are formed through shared t
asks and/or projects.
How I Process Information
All four temperament types are “Abstract” thinkers. This is an essential trait for envisioning what is not yet built, as if it were already fully developed.
How I Process Decisions
Also, all four temperament types process decisions with their “Head“. In other words they use reason, logic, and data to make decisions.
How I Relate to the World Around Me
The Creator and Designer are “Adaptive” in how they relate to the world around them, while the Planner and Super Leader are “Systematic” in style. Adaptive people are more quick to change the plan as the perspectives of other people are
considered. Whereas the Planner and Super Leader, being more systematic in nature, will stick to a decided plan unless verifiable data dictates plan modification. In some cases flexibility might be considered a valuable trait. But, in most cases it is not. When plans constantly change, people become frustrated, timelines are never met, and budgets quickly get out of control.
Another point of evaluation is Score Intensity, or how strongly each profile tends to score within the dichotomy statements. The stronger the dichotomy score, the more that attribute will control the way a person thinks, feels, relate to others, and makes decisions. A 90% Independent will exhibit a much stronger internalization of the analytical and strategic planning thought process than will a 60% Independent. Similarly, the person assessed with a 90% independent score will also likely exhibit poorer social skills, which may inhibit team member recruitment.
This is the process I work through when considering candidates for various positions. In each case represented here, a temperament strength also represents a temperament weakness. This is why I strongly advocate Three-Strand-Cord leadership teams. The basic Three-Strand-Cord Leadership Team looks like this…
In our present scenario, How to Build an Entrepreneurial Ministry Team, the Team Leader within the three-strand-cord model is replaced with an entrepreneurial leader who serves as the team lead. The Administrator provides support by managing the many tasks associated with the ministry team. A Nurturer/Care leader helps care for the emotional/spiritual needs of the team members as well as the needs of the people they lead.
Finally, I would never make decisions about people based exclusively upon their data. Personal interviews are critical to either affirming your mental picture of the candidate, or disproving your mental picture. We should never prejudge people without first giving them the courtesy of a personal interview. If the candidate is not ideal for the current open position, then my next question is: “Where should they be positioned within the ministry?” Let’s not dismiss or reject people based upon their scores, for each person is a God-given resource to help your church succeed in it’s ministry mission.
A Cautionary Tale
What happens when churches fail to build entrepreneurial ministry teams? Many years ago, Group Publishing had a Church Consultation division. Their consultants used AssessME to analyze all the congregants within 100 stagnant or declining churches. They found in each of these stagnant or declining churches that there existed not one person with an entrepreneurial temperament. Why? Over the years, all the entrepreneurial types of people had been forced out of the church. This is a very common scenario within change-resistant churches. People who wish to help implement change are resisted and sometimes even vilified. As a result, in frustration and experiencing the pain associated with rejection, entrepreneurs leave the change-resistant church. Now, when they need entrepreneurs the most, they no longer possess the very people essential to their future development. The loss of entrepreneurial leadership is one fundamental cause for the plague of dying churches across Europe and North America.
Please respect and nurture your entrepreneurs. They will constantly challenge the status quo…and that is a good thing!