Wednesday, May 22, 2019

LESSON 14 – Be Intentional About Your First 30 Minutes

Welcome to Lessons From the Church Boardroom—The Blog, a 40-week journey through the new book, Lessons From the Church Boardroom: 40 Insights for Exceptional Governance, by Dan Busby and John Pearson. Each Wednesday, we'll feature a guest blogger’s favorite snippet from the week's topic. Steve Stroope is our guest blogger this week for the fourth of four lessons in "Part 4: Epiphanies in the Boardroom.”

LESSON 14 OF 40 – Be Intentional About Your First 30 Minutes
Does your board meeting need a refresh—so you experience holy moments more frequently?

THE BIG IDEA FROM THE BOOK: In Lesson 14, the authors note that what happens at the very beginning of our board meetings—signals to everyone the tone and tenor of the entire meeting. This is an important reminder that we must orchestrate the first 30 minutes to create the expectation that every board meeting can have eternal consequences.

MY FAVORITE INSIGHTS from Lesson 14, pages 77-81:
• The Dilbert cartoon about being late for meetings!
“How many holy moments can you recall from last year’s board meetings?”
• The insights from the book by Chip Heath and Dan Heath, The Power of Moments: “With examples from education, business, hospitality, and church sectors, they call leaders and teams to break out of the routine and defy ‘the forgettable flatness of everyday work and life by creating a few precious moments.’” 

Perhaps you read the tongue-in-cheek research from The Babylon Bee that recently reported, “According to new findings by biblical scholars published Monday, the phrase ‘a day is like a thousand years,’ found in 2 Peter 3 and originally thought to refer to God’s patience in bringing judgment upon the earth, is actually better interpreted as a reference to the slow passage of time in church staff meetings.”

Our church board members might have similar thoughts about the slow pace of our board meetings! So when I read Lesson 14, I was reminded that the pace of church life is rapid—and very, very challenging. With eternity in view, we seek to be innovative, relevant, and even prophetic. Consequently—it seems—our tanks are almost on empty when it’s time for another board meeting. 

So in just five pages, I was refreshed with the idea of refreshing the first 30 minutes of our board meeting—creating the right environment from the get-go, rather than meandering into another mediocre meeting.

I especially appreciated the self-imposed “report card” concept for wrapping up every board meeting: “Create unhurried space at the end of your meeting for around-the-room ‘One Big Take-Away’ responses.” And this poke-in-the-ribs reminder: “How you launch will impact how you land.”


Steve Stroope was called to Lake Pointe Church shortly after its founding in 1979 and today he serves as Lead Pastor to a congregation that has grown from 53 in attendance to more than 12,000 each week at Dallas metro campuses. In addition to leading Lake Pointe, Steve provides coaching to partnership churches throughout the world. Steve’s spiritual gifts are evangelism, leadership, and teaching and he has a passion for seeing the Gospel presented to unchurched people in a culturally relevant style without compromising its truth. Steve also believes that one of the keys to an effective church is keeping a balance between evangelism and discipleship.

A speaker and leadership coach, Steve is also the author of Tribal Church: Lead Small. Impact Big. His book challenges senior leaders to create a strategy for spiritual formation at home. Steve and his wife, Marsha, have two grown daughters and five grandchildren. 

• Read The Power of Moments: Why Certain Experiences Have Extraordinary Impact, by Chip Heath and Dan Heath.
• Instead of a hastily prepared thought to launch your board meeting, be intentional about inviting a board member (or a staff member) to share a spiritual insight that will be relevant (not random) to the focus of the board meeting.
• Visit the ECFA Knowledge Center and read and share the short chapter, “Lesson 14 – Be Intentional About Your First 30 Minutes.”


On May 29, 2019, watch for the commentary by Ryan Britt on Lesson 15, "Do Not Interrupt! Don’t assume board members know how to listen.”


BULK ORDERS: Click here.  For more resources and to download the book's Table of Contents, visit the book's webpage.

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