What’s your OCQ? (Organizational Cultural Intelligence)

Why does the culture of your organization matter? It matters to the extent that it is supporting or holding you back from being all you can be, solve a critical problem, or take advantage of an important opportunity.

Let’s coin the term OCQ to stand for Organizational Cultural Quotient or Intelligence, which is the capacity to understand your organization’s culture and to continuously hone and focus the culture to maximize its positive impact on your organizational effectiveness. What’s your OCQ? How ...

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Creating a Culture of Execution that Values both Results and Relationships

© 2015 John Purcell

Why do so many churches have a real challenge when it comes to taking a vision or mission and turning it into “boots on the ground” that get results? I can’t count the churches that I have talked to that have a culture of “doing church” and maintaining what they have but no sense of how to move the church forward to a God-honoring future. When they hear that the answer ...

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8 Attributes of the Excellent Sr. Pastor

A little while ago a church elder asked me whether I had a list of the ideal attributes of a Sr. Pastor. I realized that I had those in my head but had never written them down in one place. So here is my list of the leadership attributes of the excellent Sr. Pastor. While a leader can be truly gifted or have a naturally designed strength in some of these areas, no one person will have natural strengths in ...

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How and When does a Christian Fire an Employee

Don Fischer, founder of the Gap, was quoted as saying that during decades of hiring, he found that he made the right calls only half the time. And he learned to act fast when it wasn’t right because waiting only makes a bad decision worse.

Dismissing an employee fills the most courageous leaders with something between dread and terror. It is mostly mishandled badly because we avoid doing the right things for too long and then may overreact and do ...

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The “Living 360” – bring biblical community to leadership evaluation and growth

Pastor Robert’s interactions with others felt highly rational and even cold, and people never knew whether he was listening to them due to his lack of responsiveness. After participating in a “living 360” process, he not only understood but he fully appreciated the impact of these two factors on co-workers and church members and therefore on his leadership effectiveness. Today, with coaching assistance, Robert is making great strides to create new habits of more positive and helpful relationship and leadership ...

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Pastoral Succession, Staff Selection, and Church Culture

There are no more challenging tasks for the church than pastoral succession and key staff selection. Church leaders would rarely underestimate the importance of these decisions, but it’s difficult to fully understand the critical dynamics behind them. And the most crucial issue of all, I believe, is that of organizational culture.

Your culture is how things get done, how people treat each other, and what is most important in your organization. John Kotter defines it as “group norms of behavior and ...

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To Measure Success in a Church, You Must Use Surveys. Here’s Why.

How do you measure success at a church? Jim Collins in Good to Great and the Social Sectors, says that in the “social sector,” which includes churches, almost everything that we can easily measure is actually an INPUT rather than an OUTCOME. Based on this, I would argue that worship attendance and membership are indicators of how many people are candidates for the life impact that you desire, giving is a measure of resources that can be applied to ministries ...

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Pastoral Succession and Church Culture

There are no more challenging tasks for the church than pastoral succession and key staff selection. We church leaders would rarely underestimate the importance of these decisions, but it’s difficult to fully understand the critical dynamics behind them. And the most crucial issue of all, I believe, is that of organizational culture.

Your culture is how things get done, how people treat each other, and what is most important in your organization. John Kotter defines it as “group norms of behavior ...

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Take Some of Your Best Leaders Out of Leadership!

If the backbone of the church is our corps of volunteers, then arguably our greatest resource of all is our leaders. That’s pretty intuitive. But here’s a thought that isn’t. We should take some of our leaders, perhaps some of our BEST ones, out of leadership. Why? To shepherd other leaders. To invest our best in our greatest resource.

Admit it. We don’t care for our leaders very well. You’re a leader if you’re ...

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How to obtain an audio of my seminar on Models for Elder Led Church Governance

You can obtain an audio of this one-hour seminar which I led on June 18, 2013 at the PCA General Assembly. The Title is “Six Models for Presbyterian Governance Systems; however, the content applies to any elder-led church.

To download this session, go to Barker Productions.

The producer has a small charge of $3.

You can download the key PowerPoint slides that go with the presentation here GA 2013 handout.

Please contact me if you have any questions ...

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