I am reading another great book by Roger Connors and Tom Smith where they talk about accountable and non-accountable behavior and thinking, and what each looks like.
‘Below that line’ is the all to familiar blame game or victim cycle. People who get stuck in the blame game begin feeling victimized by circumstances that seem out of their control. They then will fail to move forward in their quest for results. By continuing to stay below the line of accountability, they focus more on what cannot be done and set their focus on the obstacles we face, not the actions we can take to get past those obstacles and achieve the results. These people in the end almost always never feel fulfilled or they feel frustrated and paralyzed. Their teams and organizations and ministries falter.
‘Above the line’ are steps to accountability, See It, Own It, Solve It, and Do It. People who adhere to these steps of accountability almost always think and act in an accountable manner. They accept the fact that they are, and must be part of the solution. They focus on what they can do rather than on what they cannot do to get the results. They look for creative ways to deal with obstacles, which they see as opportunities to make great things happen rather than excuses for failure.
When individuals consistently engage in these two very different modes they create different cultures, which perform at different levels. What culture have you created? Where are you and your team at?
Here are some phrases that may be said if you are one who is ‘Below the Line of Ministry’.
1. We can’t get the volunteers to help so this is why our ministry is the way it is.
2. Our budgets have been cut so we don’t have the money to do anything.
3. I don’t really understand where the direction is going, so that is why I have slowed down.
4. The kids are so much more wild these days. It makes it impossible to teach them.
You may hear these said if you are ‘Above the Line in Ministry’.
1. We may not have many volunteers now but if we all start to recruit we will increase our opportunities of drawing them in.
2. We may not have all the money we desire for now, but let’s examine the way we spend it and see if we can be more creative to do more with what we have been blessed with.
3. I may not be as clear as I would like about our direction but if I make an appointment with those who can help me become clearer then that is what I must do.
4. Kids are growing up in a different world than I did, but what an adventure to try and work on bringing the message to these kids in a way that they will understand it. They enjoy unconditional love as much as I did when I was younger.
Where are you at? What changes may need to be made?