Lead Well: Get Back in Sync

I’m a little out of whack at the moment. I don’t seem to have a good rhythm or flow to my week and it is frustrating me.

There are legitimate reasons for this. I’m covering some extra responsibilities so my week is a little more full than usual. But this just demonstrates more reasons to make sure the flow is right. 

When I’m out of sync I am less productive. Don’t get me wrong, stuff still gets done but I flit from one thing to the next, trying to do multiples tasks at once and this is never the best way for me to approach my day.  Posts don’t get written. The book just seems to take ages to finish off. Each day seems to own me.

Being out of sync equals increased levels of agitation and frustration. 

When I’m in sync the opposite is true, productivity levels go up. My focus is better. I have a clean desk and clarity of thinking. The right things get the right focus at the right time.

Being in sync equals increased levels of enjoyment towards the work I am doing.

It doesn’t take much to get back on track, to re-align my working week. 4 things usually help me…

Plan ahead. This is not about having the mother of all to-do lists although that can help. It’s more to do with knowing what are the things which only I can do and which tasks can be delegated. This involves taking some time out to review projects and tasks I currently have ongoing and marking them in one of 4 ways – for me NOW, for me LATER, for someone else NOW, for someone else LATER.

6 by 6 idea. Every now and then I do this Pastor Bill Hybels idea. What are the 6 things which need my attention in the next 6 weeks? These are the projects, tasks or people who should be receiving the greatest of my time and investment.

Sort the diary. Block times in – for actually getting stuff done. Make sure meetings are needed and then don’t overrun. We may not all be systems people but the diary can help create and protect a good flow for the week.

Say NO to some stuff. This can be the hardest thing to do but often the most powerful. It may only be for a season but if it helps make the best use of your time and increases your effectiveness, then NO may have to become my best friend for a while.

This is just my thinking of where I am right now and how to get myself back on the front foot and feeling a little more focussed and productive in all the right areas. Starts tomorrow when I’m back in the office after a few days off. 

What do you do to get yourself back on track?

Kickstarter Project Launched

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The dream of seeing the book released takes another step today with the launch of my Kickstarter project. You can have a look here: my leadership book published

After a casual conversation with a friend about being a leader, 19 is the book where I am sharing the leadership lessons I have learned over 25+ years as a leader to my younger 19 year old self.

Why 19? That was when I got given my first leadership opportunity. A great couple asked me to take the lead. They saw something in me which I definitely didn’t see in myself. I had a lot to learn.

So this is very much my story. I have tried to be as honest as I can while keeping it a practical resource, with reflective questions at the end of each chapter to get the reader thinking about their own leadership journey. Plus some guest authored chapters too.

Every pledge is a pre-order so if you would like a copy then I hope you help to make this happen. When successful then the manuscript will be sent to the publishers with the aim of having all completed by May 2017.

Thanks for having a look and I will keep you updated along the way. If you choose to support the project then a MASSIVE THANK YOU!!

 

What Would You Do in 2017?

Yesterday I asked a question about thankfulness. Having an attitude of gratitude is really important.  Recognising our blessings helps us to notice the good things going on around us and in us.

I was blessed in 2016 to visit Bangalore and spend time with Immy who leads our Xcel location there.

I was blessed to go to Israel and walk where Jesus walked.

I was blessed with healing, financial miracles and breakthrough moments too in situations.

I was also blessed to know that wherever I was, whatever I was doing, God was always with me. My awareness of this grew. It’s so easy to just get on with things and not remember this fundamental truth.

Don’t forget to share your thankfulness stories.

Today’s question gets us looking ahead to 2017. What would you do with your life in 2017 if you knew it was impossible to fail at what you attempted?

Again I’d love for you to share your answers. 

How Would You Review 2016?

Between Christmas and New Year ~ isn’t this just the weirdest time of year? Christmas Day has come and gone. Now, it can seem like all we are doing is simply waiting for the New Year especially if you are not at work. 

It can test my patience by not really being focused on anything. I am naturally a doer and don’t do ‘nothing’ very well. 

To counter this I thought over the next few days I would post some blogs to help me help you. To ask some questions to cause us all to reflect, be thankful, but also to look ahead with purpose and challenge too. 

Question 1: Looking back on 2016 ~ what 3 things are you most thankful for? Maybe reflect and use this time to give God some thanks for the things He has done in your life during the last 12 months. 

I look forward to reading your comments and your stories.

10 Days….

When there were 80 days left of 2016 I wrote a blog outlining some of the things I wanted to get done by the end of the year…here’s an update.

New site…not quite there yet. But the behind the scenes I have been working on the content.

The Walking With God 45-day devotional is complete and going out to a few for editorial suggestions.

The leadership book ’19’ is done. [See image] book-header

Guest chapters are back, editorial suggestions are in and final amendments are being made. I will be launching a ‘Kickstarter’ project at the end of the month. Publishers are ready for the manuscript in February with a hopeful date for release being May 2017.

Thanks for all the support and encouragement. Maybe you set off to ‘get some stuff done’ towards the end of this year. How has it gone? I haven’t overcome the procrastination completely but I am glad to have got over these few hurdles. One thing I have managed to do is convince myself that ‘I can’. I am excited for 2017 and all that God has in store for me.

46

That’s how old I am today. Happy Birthday to me. How did this happen? (Obviously I know the answer but how can I be 46?)

Closer to 50 than 40. My youngest suggested I make a list of 50 things to do before I am 50. Maybe. I think I would do just as well focusing and getting on with things I need to do right now. 

‘Better get on with it’. 

That was my thought this morning. With Gods help, the next 46 can be me, getting on with it, doing all that God would have me to do.

‘No more excuses’.  

I’m loving life and the adventure I am on, can’t wait for what’s coming next. 

5 Things on my Desk Today

For the last few weeks I have not consistently been at my desk, which means I haven’t necessarily been able to focus in the way that I would like to. After all, most jobs require that you get stuff done.

One thing is for sure, there is never a shortage of jobs that need attention. The key is to make sure that I am doing things that others cannot do, but also to have an awareness, on behalf of my Lead Pastor, of what else is happening across locations and ministries.

I’ve been blessed to travel to Berlin for an Executive Team Conference, to Bangalore to spend time with Immy and help in the preparation for our location over there. Then it was Conference week for us and Influence 2016, which by the way was amazing. That was followed by last week which was a Learning Communities event, you can read about in previous posts, plus both my dad and my father-in-law were in hospital too.

So today I was at my desk, with the mother of all to-do lists, nicely colour coded to show what was for me, what was for a meeting and what could be delegated. Having said that though, 6 things remain on my desk….

Systems – looking at what are the right meetings to be taking place, team get togethers, agendas, maybe even some of the church journey for people who are part of Xcel.

Website/Communications – we lost our site earlier this year and I am hopeful that this week will see the launch of a new xcelchurch.com. At to that a plan for the best way to communicate what we do each week to team and congregation.

Budgets – to organise and communicate with greater effectiveness and then monitor in the same way too.

Job Roles – on behalf of the Board, thoughts about job roles for myself, other staff, Congregational Pastors, Key Leaders and looking at possible future positions too.

Xcel Bangalore – alongside other members of the Pastoral Team, making sure Immy is equipped, encouraged and inspired with all that he needs to make this new location work.

Being able to do what I am passionate about is a privilege and I don’t take the responsibility lightly. My energies are all into playing my part in building the local church, doing whatever needs to be done. 

What’s your passion? How are you living it out every day?