3 Tips To Help You Be The WORST Leader You Can Be

There are so many posts and books about “How To Be A Better Leader.”  I’ve written a few and have read even more.  So, I thought I would take a different route and give you a couple of tips on how to be a bad leader – in fact, the WORST leader you can be!

1)  Be Unpredictable

If you want to be a bad leader, make it hard for your team to know what you want, what you think, or what mood you will be in.  Volunteers hate it when they have to guess what you feel is the right way to handle things.  Unpredictability is one of the worst characteristics of a bad leader.

2)  Give Most Of Your Attention To The “Squeaky Wheels”

Bad leaders fail to honor, praise, or sometimes even recognize those on their team who are faithful, hard-working team players.  Bad leaders tend to only respond to those who are whiny and critical.  So, if you want to be a bad leader, definitely make plans to ignore your “A-Team” and spend all your time trying to please the critics and whiners.

3)  Play It Safe – Always!

If you want to be the worst leader you can be, then you need to NEVER take risks.  Don’t place someone in an area of ministry until they have proved themselves to “be a star.”  Don’t give younger volunteers opportunities to step up the plate – because, what if they fail?  And, definitely DON’T raise the bar for those who are serving.  Make entry easy and serving even easier.  Asking too much of a volunteer might make them want to quit.  After all, “nobody wants to be challenged!”

So, there you have it: “Three Tips To Help you Be The WORST Leader You Can Be!”  Do you agree?  Disagree?  Leave a comment and let me know!

Three Reasons You Might Be Losing The Boys In Your Kids Ministry

I came across this TED talk the other day, and it very much intrigued me.  For those unfamiliar with TED – it is a gathering place for some of the smartest and insightful people on the planet.  Every day, there are new talks (5-15 minutes in length) that vary in topic from physchology to art to science to quantum physics.  They are found at TED.com.

This particular talk is by Ali Carr-Chellman, an instructional designer and author who studies the most effective ways to teach kids and to make changes at school.  In this talk she pinpoints three reasons boys are tuning out of school in droves, and lays out her bold plan to re-engage them: bringing their culture into the classroom, with new rules that let boys be boys, and video games that teach as well as entertain.

I think there are many implications for those of us in Kids Ministry.  Are we doing what we need to be doing in order to make our Kids Ministry palatable for boys to be engaged and “belong?”  I challenge you to give 12 minutes to watch this talk.  Then, leave a comment in my comments section to let me know your thoughts on this subject.

Drop The Excuses

We all have our favorite excuses why we haven’t done the things we know we should do.  Taking risks, expanding our horizons, making significant life and habit changes – all of these things are held back by our favorite excuses:

*  I’m comfortable with the way things are, so I don’t really need to change.

*  I’ll probably fail, so why even try?

*  It’ll take too long to change.

*  People will criticize me if I try this.

As I write in my book, I Blew It!, excuses are perpetual blinders.  With them, we can stay stuck for a lifetime.  When we find the courage to open our eyes to the truth, amazing things can happen.  To make real change a reality in our lives, we have to be willing to get rid of every excuse we’ve used in the past.

Excuses aren’t unique to people today.  When God called Moses, he had all kinds of reasons he couldn’t step up and be the leader of God’s people.  God told Moses he was the one who would lead the Israelites out of captivity in Egypt to the Promised Land.

It’s time to eliminate your excuses and your rationalizations.  Make a declaration: I’m not going to live by my excuses any longer!  After Moses had given God multiple reasons why he couldn’t lead Israel out of slavery, Moses said, “O Lord, please send someone else to do it” (Exodus 4:13).  As it turns out, all of his excuses were only smoke screens.  The real issue was that Moses flat out did not want to do what God had called him to do.

Is that you?  Have you been making excuses to cover up the fact that you’re unwilling to do what God has called you to do?  It’s time to be honest.  Be honest and trust God to change your life.

Book Review: “Jumping The Track” by Roger Fields

When I first began seeing Roger tweet about the book he was writing, he was billing it as “The Kidz Blitz Story.”  That is a major understatement!  While this book does chronicle the story of how the Kidmin phenomenon KIDZ BLITZ got started, it is so much more than that!

“Jumping The Track” is Roger’s story.  It’s the story of a man who refused to follow the mold set by others in ministry.  It’s the story of a man’s struggle with his own overwhelmingly shy personality to become a mesmerizing stage host and people-person.  It’s the story of a man who broke through tradition into a dynamic faith experience.  It’s all that and much more!

Roger is a gifted storyteller.  After reading the book, I feel like I was right there with him, Tammie, Terra, Shannon, Mica, and Morgan for the whole journey.  I literally laughed out loud as Roger shared some of his early ministry mistakes.  I was truly challenged as I read about his leaps of faith to start Kidz Blitz.

“Jumping The Track” refers to being willing to abruptly change directions in life at the Lord’s command.  Rather than follow a pre-set strategy and list of long-term goals, Roger suggests that each of us should “hold on loosely” to the trajectory of our lives and be open to the voice of God.  He may call each of us to “Jump The Track.”  If so, will we be so tightly clinging to our long-term goals and human vision that we miss out on His plan?

I encourage each of you to purchase this book.  It will challenge you to think differently about life, ministry, and faith – in a good way!

Here we go!

I have been asked the same question for several years, “When are you going to start blogging?”  I have always had a lot of different answers.  “I don’t have time.”  “It’s not my thing.”  “It’s a passing fad.”  All true thoughts, but not the real reasons.  Time to come clean.

The truth is, I have avoided getting into the BLOGosphere because:

1)  I didn’t think I had anything new to add.

There are already so many Kidmin bloggers out there like Sam Luce, Tony Kummer, Kenny Conley, Gina McClain, and others.  I wasn’t sure that ONE MORE VOICE was needed.  I respect and read what all of these Kidmin bloggers share on a weekly basis, and I wasn’t sure I had anything unique to add to the amazing stuff they were already sharing.

2)  I was afraid.

I have to admit, I thought things like “What if no one reads it?”  “What if it stinks?”  “What if I run out of things to say?”  I allowed all of these thoughts and feelings to keep me from stepping out into unknown territory.  Ever been there?

3)  I was procrastinating.

I was allowing myself to put off and postpone something that I really felt I should do.  I figured, “I will blog – SOME DAY.”  The problem is – as I was reminded by a recent movie quote – “SOME DAY is a code word for NEVER.”  We say “some day” because we never really intend to take the leap of faith and just DO IT.

So, that time is over.  I am now jumping in with both feet.  However, I am planning to do things a little differently.  I plan to use this blog not as a place to write about the things that I want to say – but, rather write about the things that YOU want to hear.

I have been blessed to be involved in Kids Ministry for nearly 20 years.  In that time, I have been blessed with many successes, and fallen on my face more times than I can count.  Through the highs and lows, mountains and valleys, successes and failures – I have learned many lessons.

I want to use this blog to answer questions from other fellow Kids Ministry leaders and volunteers.  I want you to submit questions about areas you are struggling with, are curious about, or need answers for.  EVERYTHING is open and fair game.

Each week, I will choose one question to answer here on the blog.  Be sure to subscribe and submit.  If your question is chosen, you will receive credit as well as a store credit to use in our High Voltage Kids Ministry web store.

So, thanks to all of you who encouraged me to do this.  Your prayers and support were felt and needed.  Here we go!  Let’s take this journey as a team – together!

– Brian Dollar

P.S.  The winner of the $200 coupon code will be announced in my very next post!  (sorry, the deadline to register and be eligible was midnight last night)