Navigation is one of the most difficult facets of leadership.
Most leaders can chart a course. Getting from Point A to B isn't that hard.
Except that it is.
You create a path to walk, start on your way, and then the ground begins to shake. Strategies start to fail, unable to work in the new environment. How you adapt when the landscape changes says a lot about who you are as a leader ... and as a team.
My impulse is almost always to stick to my guns, cut off an ear or two and to try to muscle through. My strategies are well thought through, insightful, sometimes even brilliant. And I think I know what I'm doing.
But what if what if that doesn't work?
Many of us in campus ministry adjust our strategy once a year. We try something for a year, evaluate and change as necessary. If we make changes mid-year, it's usually in response to some dramatic explosion. Someone quits. Something goes horribly wrong. Some wild new opportunity presents itself. Response.
But what if your campus was actually two campuses? One in the Fall and another in the Spring.
This was the case at Washington and Lee. In the Fall, everyone wants to meet everyone else. Everyone goes to everything. In the Spring, Greek rush sweeps over the campus, communities solidify and work-load increases, bringing with it a host of challenges and opportunities. And I always found myself scrambling.
Why aren't people showing up?
Why aren't people reaching out?
Why are we burning out?
Why are we messing up?
Why isn't our strategy working?
Can you imagine what it would look like if we planned, before the year even started, to change strategies?
Kevin Watkins, the InterVarsity Staff at W&L, brought this to my attention today. It really complemented my reading of John 18 and showed a lot of insight. Those students are blessed to have him!