The single greatest advantage any company can achieve is organizational health. Yet it is ignored by most leaders even though it is simple, free, and available to anyone who wants it.
– Patrick Lencioni, The Advantage
With that bold statement, Patrick Lencioni delivers perhaps his finest work to date – no mean feat considering that his eight business fables remain required reading for leaders in any organization.
I respect the thought leadership of Lencioni. But in order to apply his new and culminating book for church leaders, I prefer to reframe the big idea just a bit. He is really packaging the discipline of clarity around the big idea of “organization health.”
Why is he doing this? Well, as someone who is helping others with clarity every day, the first thing you learn is that clarity is rarely a felt need, but is always a real need.
The problem for church leaders with focusing on health is that we experienced and passed through a mini-era called the “church health movement” in the 90s as thought leaders wrestled with the limitations of the church growth movement. Therefore, I want to substitute the word “health” with the word “clarity” so you can ponder the connection.
Instead of trying to become smarter, Lencioni asserts that leaders and organizations need to shift their focus to becoming healthier, allowing them to tap into the more-than-sufficient intelligence and expertise they already have.
What’s the secret to discovering organizational health [clarity]? Or to reframe the question completely, why do leaders struggle to embrace it?
According to Lencioni, it’s because too many leaders quietly believe they are too sophisticated, too busy, or too analytical to bother with it.
In other words, they think it’s beneath them. Before leaders can tap into the power of organizational health, they must humble themselves enough to overcome the three biases that prevent them from embracing it: