Thursday, March 30, 2017

If your board needs help, I can help

The quality of the work of a board whether a church board or other non-profit directly influences the ability of leaders to lead and the mission to be accomplished. If you want to gauge the health of your board's work, take the test below. If all board members take it and discuss the results it will be a good conversation.

With over thirty years of working with boards I am available to help your board be the best they can be. Whether remotely using technology or in person, together we can make substantial strides toward healthier and more missional board work.

As the author of High Impact Church Boards I have worked with thousands of board members to ensure that the right people end up on an organizations board, that the board is intentional in its work and that the culture of the leadership system is empowering rather than controlling. Cost is kept to a minimum by using technology like Go To Meeting, or I can join you in person for governance training or retreats.

Here are the links to all of my blogs on church boards.

I can be contacted at or 612.868.0487. I look forward to talking to and working with those who desire to raise the level of their board's effectiveness.

To assess the relative health of your board, take the test here.

TJ Addington (Addington Consulting) has a passion to help individuals and organizations maximize their impact and go to the next level of effectiveness. He can be reached at

"Creating cultures of organizational excellence."

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Work harder or work smarter. Eight tips

Almost everyone I know works hard. Most, very hard. If we put as much attention into working smarter, however, we could accomplish more and free up time for other activities. After all, there is nothing more precious for most of us than time. And as we get older we realize that time with family and friends and our own development is a higher priority than spending more time in our work.

The premise of working smarter is based on a simple truth: Not all work yields the same result. The secret is knowing what practices will give us the largest return on our effort. Those individuals who are most productive practice these disciplines.

One: They prioritize and focus their energies. They take the time each day and each week to determine what are the most important tasks to complete and resist the temptation to be sidetracked by other issues that pop up and distract from the most important. They keep the main thing the main thing, stay focused and don't confuse mere activity with results.

Two: They keep track of their main priorities. They have a written or electronic system for tracking their priorities, their obligations and their progress. It is not "all in their head" which usually means we are not paying close attention to what we need to be doing. On any given day or week we ought to be able to quickly articulate what we are working on because we are keeping track of our priorities. Some will say, "But I like to multitask." Multitasking is overrated! Often it is an excuse for not staying focused and research shows that multitasking is actually a detriment to focused work.

Three. They delegate to others those things that they don't absolutely have to do. Many of us find it hard to delegate tasks we have traditionally done. Those who work smart are quick to delegate anything they don't need to personally do to capable people so that they can concentrate on what they do best. This is part of what it means to focus and to understand the unique role that we play and then make time for that role.

Four. They use their calendar to prioritize their work. If you look at the calendar of those who work smarter you see that they have put into their calendar those activities that are the most important to accomplish. They keep those commitments and use their calendar to prioritize their work. They realize that not all activities are equal. They also recognize that they must calendar their most important activities first, before other activities crowd them out.

Five. They understand the value of time
Time is the one thing that we cannot get back. Money comes and it goes but time just goes. It is a precious commodity because it represents opportunities to invest in what is most important to us. Therefor working smarter means that we use time wisely, focusing on what is most important at work so that we have time outside of work to invest in other meaningful activities and relationships. They don't waste time.

Six. They understand the value of relationships and nurture them
Healthy relationships are the foundation of life and work. Those who work smarter actively nurture relationships around them because relationships nurture trust, cooperation and teamwork.

Seven. They evaluate their work regularly
Working smarter means that we evaluate our own work critically and often. Are we focused on the right things? Are we neglecting key areas or are we spending too much time on peripheral activities because they are easier? Where do we need to recalibrate or adjust? Asking the right questions helps us to evaluate our work and adjust where necessary.

Eight. They take regular time to think
Taking time to think deeply about what we do, why we do it and how we do it is a secret of those who work smarter rather than harder. All it takes is  the intentionally to set aside time to think! Again, how we spend our time makes a difference in how we work.

TJ Addington (Addington Consulting) has a passion to help individuals and organizations maximize their impact and go to the next level of effectiveness. He can be reached at

"Creating cultures of organizational excellence."

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Chase the Career of Your Dreams in 2017

Guest Writer, Gloria Martinez

The year is 2017 and the time is now. You've always wanted to have the courage to go for what you want in life, but someone has always held you back. That someone is you. If you find yourself watching in envy as others move forward into the life of their dreams then this is for you. Nothing is keeping you from being the woman that you’ve always wanted to be —you just need to shake things up! Stop watching your life pass by from the sidelines and actually get in the game! Use this guide as a compass to direct you to becoming the girl of your own dreams.

Get clear on what you want
If you’re going to make any life changes, especially career related ones, then you need to take the time to figure out where exactly you want to go. Is there a dream career that you’ve been wanting to chase but you were too scared to let your family down? Do you want to leave your corporate gig and open your very own bakery? If you are having trouble narrowing down what you want ask yourself this question: What’s something you love doing so much, that you’d do it for free? Whatever you answer is your truth —your passion. When you chase your passion, you are no longer chasing a paycheck. However when you do what you love, the money will come to you anyway. So get clear on what you really want and set the intention to go after it, no matter what.

Make no excuses
When you decide to go after your dream occupation, there is no time for “what ifs” and “I cant’s”. This is where things get real and boil down to how bad you really want it. There may need to be sacrifices made on your end —maybe you’ll have spend late nights working on your craft and have to lose out on sleep. Your social life may take a nosedive for a while. Whatever it takes to get it done, by all means just do it and make no qualms about it. Sacrifices are a part of the process and excuses only keep you further away from the finish line. The true reward comes when you get to wake up and be the person you’ve dreamed about becoming for so long.

Speak it into existence
The job you want to create and the life you want to live are already there. They’re just waiting on you to acknowledge them. Visualize what it will be like everyday when you get to do what you love. What emotions does it bring about? Stay with those emotions and let them guide you toward the reality you are creating. When you picture yourself as already attaining your goals you are setting yourself up for success because it springs you into action. That feeling will give you the drive and motivation you need to make that leap toward your life of fulfillment, even on days where you feel less than motivated. Keep the vision of how your life will be vivid and current in your mind, and watch as your reality unfolds to meet your thoughts.

The year is young and your future is bright. If you see what you want clearly in your head, then it is on you to take hellbent action to make your dreams a reality. Shift into the career that feeds your passion, and the rest of your days will never feel like work. If you believe in your heart that you already have everything you need then you’re halfway there!

Ms. Martinez believes that while women have made many advancements toward “shattering the glass ceiling,” there is still much to be done. It is her aim to help increase the number of women-led businesses by educating others about the topic. See her website at