Leading Change
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Leading Change Tip: Remove Social Barriers


“We should not dictate to our audience which device we want our audience to lose.”Pioneers of Social Gaming

I captured this video at South by Southwest Interactive during the Pioneers of Social Gaming seminar. Especially after reading through the comments on the Changing Evangelism post I wanted to share something related to the idea of helping others embrace the change that needs to take place in order to move forward.

The seminar addressed the reasons why various online games become so popular so fast, as well as why others suffer and never gain traction. I saw an instant connect with helping a ministry change as both involve discerning and removing social barriers between two subgroups.

A huge social barrier in online games comes from the creators determining the manner in which their content is consumed. When the creators fail to adapt to the needs and desires of the users the adoption and excitement over the game tends to dwindle.

A couple social barriers I have noticed in ministry:

  • Older leaders seeking to not only set direction but also implement it, isolating the younger non-positional leaders most equipped to determined how direction is executed.
  • Younger leaders dreaming of great ideas but failing to build a tactical model/example to show to older positional leaders.

From Changing Evangelism:

There is a large disparity between the evangelistic activities our staff feel they have permission to spend time on, and the evangelistic activity that they feel is the next best step for the typical lost student.

This statement reflects both of the social barriers above. The comments in the previous post show that staff on both ends desperately want to become more effective in evangelism, so what can we do?

Older leaders need to get out of the execution process and become champions and facilitators of strategy.

Younger leaders need to think big picture and develop tools, micro-models, and anything else that can tactically represent your idea as well as its potential for greater effectiveness. For example do evangelism differently for four weeks, document the response it received from not only those sharing their faith, but those hearing the Gospel, refine the document into a one or two page summary and send it to every leader you know that is “above” you organizationally.

What are some social barriers you experience in your context? Have you found any helpful ways to work through them?

Click here to watch the video if you cannot see it.

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