The Problem with Structure

Originally published on

Regardless of your church’s size, there’s no doubt it is built on an organizational structure. To effectively lead a large number of people, you need a way to protect your circle of influence and the decision-making process. This is why most church boards and leadership teams were created.

Over time, however, a structure meant to protect your progress can actually begin to get in the way. When a structure overly-directs which people are involved in decisions, it will box out the new perspectives you need. Eventually, leading strictly according to structure will get your church stuck. You may have experienced one of these side effects:

  • You leave staff meetings feeling like you barely moved the ball forward.
  • The thought of board meetings creates more stress than excitement.
  • You know you need new ideas but you’re not sure what they are.

To keep a church moving forward, leaders must see structure for what it truly is: Structure provides protection but often blocks out new perspectives.

Are you feeling the pains of an overly-directive structure? Here are 3 ways you can let in the new perspectives you need:

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Ryan Stigile