In the world of multisite ministry, most pastors and leaders wear multiple hats. The student pastor helps with adults classes and groups, children’s workers help with administrative tasks during the week, worship leaders look after the care needs of the campus, and the campus pastor jumps in wherever needed. Regardless of the position, or how many of them you hold, there is one thing every multisite leader must do, and the best multisite leaders know this. They know they have one job to execute at the campus level, and it may not be what you think, and it unquestionably requires a lot of hard work.
So what’s the job? What’s the role of every multisite leader? It’s to implement the vision of their senior leader.
Multisite leaders are vision implementors, not vision creators.
Sounds strong, right? Don’t get me wrong, we can be creative with the implementation of the vision, but we hit roadblocks when we try to create a vision different than the one God has given to our leaders. As implementors, we have to be sure that we fully understand, embrace and internalize our senior leader’s vision, because before we can ever implement something we have to own it, heart and soul. If we haven’t, our team and leaders will know right away that we are not fully bought into the idea and everyone wants to follow an authentic leader who is truly inspired by a clear vision.
Too many times, multisite leaders rush to the implementation phase without internalizing the true vision and reason behind the idea, or philosophy of their leadership. To avoid this mistake requires slowing down the rush to impress, asking further questions to understand better, and spending adequate time in personal prayer before public action. When we do these things, the vision takes root in our heart and mind long before we ever begin the implementation process.
The tension is the innate desire of every leader to create vision, rather than implement it. I’m not saying we can’t create as leaders, but rather what we create must flow from the source of our leader’s vision. Our leaders are counting on us to help them establish their God-given vision and not create a new vision altogether.
The easiest way to implement vision is to know what is most important to your leaders right now. In our church, the most important thing to our senior pastors right now is to see the majority of our church connected in groups. To copy the words of Andy Stanley, we believe “circles are better than rows.” Our leaders want to see the people of our church connected in a biblical community where encouragement, scripture, prayer and serving others is taking place. So my role, and everyone’s role on our team right now, is to champion the “groups” culture of our church.
But before we could ever implement this initiative with authentic passion, we had to internalize the reason behind this vision. After hearing from our leaders the why behind what a healthy “groups” culture could mean for our church, and further understanding the vision, we’re all working to implement groups in our spheres of influence. We still have our typical job responsibilities, and groups has become one of the ways we execute those tasks. It’s not just one department’s job; it’s everyones job – we all own the vision.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on how you internalize and implement your senior’s leaders vision.