Two weeks ago, I spent a few hours with Bob Buford, who always passes on great nuggets from the life of Peter Drucker. Through the dialogue, we came to what Drucker called the “tasks of the CEO in the new millennium.” I know that connecting the role of the senior pastor to the role of a CEO will, no doubt, cast a shadow on what I am about to say for some. Yet I believe that Drucker’s insights have profound implications for the role of the senior pastor who wants to make a difference. These are adaptations from chapter 43 of Drucker’s book entitled, Management.
#1 To define the meaningful outside of the organization.
This is a very interesting way to think about a leader who keeps the church on mission. This would be Drucker’s articulation of “external focus.”
#2 To work on getting the information “outside” into usable form.
Beyond an external focus, a leader must translate and infuse the most important information into the “bloodstream of the church”: to the staff, leaders, and members of the church.
#3 To decide on what results are meaningful for the church.
The problem here is that the functional bottom line for most churches is still attendance and giving, which does not constitute the true measure of mission. That’s why I use the Vision Frame everywhere I go to help pastors focus on output results.
#4 To decide the priorities.
On this point, Drucker’s words need no translation for church leaders: “In any but a dying organization, there are always far more tasks than there are available resources. But results are obtained only by a concentration of resources.”
#5 To place people into key positions.
Drucker reminds leaders, “In the last analysis, this task determines the performance capacity of the institution.”
#6 To organize top leadership.
Of course, your church’s governance heritage will shape your leadership structure. Yet the question remains, who wakes up thinking about the necessity to restructure and organize top leadership?