The Messiness of Working with Others

March 23, 2012

A cool rainy day here in southwest Michigan, but it has been a beautiful early spring.

We talk a lots about collaboration and especially across organizations.  Especially in ministry we often bemoan the fact of so many ministries doing the same thing with similar mission and why don’t we just work together?  Well, because it is messy!

We just do things differently and naturally our way is better!  Right? Sometimes it reminds me of some of the little irritants of marriage like does it unroll over or under?  Do you squeeze the toothpaste tube from the middle or roll up the bottom and other critical issues like that. Organizations are the same.

Also, we are here to get things done!  Taking time to explain and coordinate with others in other time zones sometimes, quite frankly, is a pain.  It slows things down.

BUT, when you fail to work with others (organizations), when you value speed and efficiency over the power of relationships and coordinated action, you lose so much potential for greater Kingdom impact.  It takes a wise and strong leader to help his “hard-chargers” to be willing to work a little more slowly and with less efficiency by working with others for the result of greater impact.

A wise leader will continue to help them to lift up their eyes from the present task or urgent situation to see the greater goal and to continue to explain the whys of working together – even if it is messy and less efficient.

Efficiency is important, but never let it trump effectiveness.  Don’t let the task trump the mission.  Keep a missional and Kingdom focus.

Have a great weekend!
BG