April 29, 2010


Filed under: leadership,Videos — Neil @ 2:30 pm

If you haven’t seen the new study (conducted by Lifeway Research) that’s on Millennials then you need to check it out.  If you don’t want to read the article take a look at this image for an idea of the study reveals:

In light of this research watch this video:

What do you think?  Agree/Disagree?

As always what I post here (or on twitter or facebook) are my personal opinions & do not represent any organization.

April 27, 2010

Book Review: Linchpin

Filed under: Uncategorized — Neil @ 7:00 am

I recently completed Linchpin by Seth Godin.  If you are a regular reader of this blog you are well aware that Seth is one of my favorite bloggers/authors.

1 of my favorite chapters was the Introduction (I realize that it does not count as a real chapter).  It sets the premise for the book.  1 of the primary ideas is that the world is set up to “drum the genius part out.”  He goes on to write “we trade our genius & artistry for apparent stability.”  I definitely see this played out in the church world & in youth ministry.  We try to fit everyone into a box in terms of faith development, personality, creativity, etc.  It’s easier to have a group of adult volunteers & teenagers who all conform to our system.

A few of my favorite quotes from the book:

  • The death of the factory means that the entire system that we built our lives around is now upside down.  This is either a huge opportunity or a giant threat.
  • We trade our genius & artistry for apparent stability.
  • When we try to drill & practice someone into subservient obedience, we’re stamping out the artist that lives within.
  • If he wants a job good enough for his best shot, it’s unlikely that he’ll ever have that job.
  • Organizations under pressure are stuck because their pain makes it hard for them to believe in the future.

Overall it was a good read.  My 1 complaint:  it was just too long.  He could have communicated the same thoughts in about 1/2 the space.

April 26, 2010

Games = Winner

Filed under: Youth Ministry — Neil @ 5:00 pm

Last week we played 3 games in our student worship service.  We typically don’t play games during the service.  We set up a poll for the teens to respond to asking “would you like to play games in student worship more often?”.  Their response:

Youth Ministry Interview Questions

Filed under: Youth Ministry — Neil @ 7:00 am

While reorganizing some old documents & notes recently I ran across a list of questions I used when interviewing for the position I currently hold.  I went into the interview w/ this list of questions:

  • How important is my family life to you & this organization?
  • How do you define success?
  • How would you describe a successful youth minister?
  • How does the youth ministry fit into the church’s vision?
  • Who performs my job review?
  • Who do I report to?
  • Who are your direct reports?
  • Who is your direct report?
  • How do I fit into your vision?
  • How are job reviews handled?
  • Who sets the youth ministry budget?  What’s the approval process?
  • What is the approval process for funds?
  • How would you describe your organization?
  • What is your leadership style?
  • Who doe the church/youth ministry attract?  Who do you want it to attract?

Plus, a few more questions about leadership styles & such.

The best resource for youth ministry interview preparations (& just about any other organizational skills) is Youth Ministry Management Tools.

April 22, 2010


Filed under: leadership,Media — Neil @ 6:00 am

I’ve recently started using Evernote to keep up w/ my task & to take notes.  It’s been very helpful & has simplified all of my different to do lists & reminders.

One if it’s advantages is that it works across a variety of platforms.  It has a mac application (I use it @ home), windows (I use it in the office) & an iPhone app.  It keeps all 3 in sync for me.  I’m able to tag notes & to create folders which keeps my home, work, etc. notes organized separately.

I really like that the iPhone app allows me to record audio notes & pictures for notes.

April 21, 2010

It was once effective

Filed under: leadership,Youth Ministry — Neil @ 7:00 am

What was super easy & effecient 15 years ago?

Pay at the pump.

It was so much better than having to go inside to pay for your gasoline.  No lines, no hassle, etc.  Now, it’s a pain.  I think I punch about 15 buttons each time I buy gas now.

Just because something was revolutionary 15 years ago doesn’t mean it makes sense now.

What areas of youth ministry are we doing today that worked well a generation ago, but are no longer effective?

April 20, 2010

Motivational Factors

Filed under: leadership — Neil @ 7:00 am

In Linchpin Seth Godin provides Richard Florida’s findings in what motivates creative professionals to do their best work.  The top 10 are:

  1. Challenge & responsibility
  2. Flexibility
  3. A stable work environment
  4. Money
  5. Professional development
  6. Peer recognition
  7. Stimulating colleagues & bosses
  8. Exciting job content
  9. Organizational culture
  10. Location & community

For creatives (& I believe many others) it’s not (just) about the money.  For those of us who lead volunteers how does this change how we lead them?

April 19, 2010

Unity Video

Filed under: Videos,Youth Ministry — Neil @ 11:22 am

Great video developed by Saddleback’s HSM.

I saw the video at MoreThanDodgeball.


Filed under: leadership,marketing,Media,Uncategorized,Videos — Neil @ 7:00 am

I’ve been watching a lot of TED videos lately in an effort to learn how to better communicate/present ideas.  Churches could learn much from these 2 videos.

April 16, 2010

Nothing to do!

Filed under: Youth Ministry — Neil @ 12:45 pm

For the 1st time in a long time our weekend is not full of youth ministry responsibilities. What are we doing? Nothing.

Hanging out w/ teens is a blast, but it’s nice (& very needed) to have a relaxing weekend.

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