"I don't know where we are going" is a common theme in churches and organizations that I work with. Often leaders don't even know the frustration is there because they have an idea in their own mind where the organization is going. Unfortunately in many cases, they have not found a way to communicate that message clearly to those they lead and it is deeply frustrating to their constituency.
Ambiguity around direction and clarity creates uncertainty in organizations and that uncertainty leads to anxiety which often spills out in dysfunctional ways. People simply don't want uncertainty and staff and volunteers want to know how their contribution contributes to a direction and a cause.
Equally frustrating are leaders who give conflicting signals as to where they are going. This leaves staff and constituents confused. Often this happens when leaders really don't know their direction and cast around looking for the "right thing."
The best leaders give their staff and constituency a great gift: Clarity. This is where we are going and this is how we are going to get there and this is the consistent message every day, every month and every year. It is like having a GPS with the end goal in site even though we are on a journey and cannot see the destination now.
If you lead an organization or team, how clear are you on where you are going and how clear are your staff? Do not assume that they are clear because you think you are. They may or may not be. I know because I talk to many staff who say to me, "I don't know where we are going."
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