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7 Enemies of Organizational Health

I love organizational leadership. I especially love leading healthy organizations. I have been in both environments…healthy and non-healthy. I prefer healthy.

If truth be told, I’ve probably been the leader in both extremes. Along the way, I’ve observed a few things which can be the enemy of organizational health.

Here are 7 enemies of organizational health:

Shortcuts – There are no shortcuts to creating a healthy organization. Success is not earned through a simple, easy-to-follow formula. It takes hard work, diligence and longevity.

Satisfaction – Resting on past success is a disruption to future organizational growth, which ultimately impacts organizational health. When the organization gets too comfortable, boredom, complacency and indifference becomes more common.

Selfishness – Organizational health requires a healthy team environment. There’s no place for selfishness in that equation. When everyone is looking out for themselves instead of the interest of the entire organization, the health is quickly in jeopardy.

Sinfulness – This one is added for those who feel every post mus be spiritual. (Just kidding.) Seriously, healthy organizations are not perfect, but whether it’s gossip or adultery that ravages through the integrity of the organization, when moral corruption enters the mix, the health of the organization will soon suffer.

Sluggishness – Change is an important part of organizational health. In a world that’s changing rapidly, organizations must act quickly to adapt to change when needed. Some things never change, such as vision and values, but the activities to reach them must be fluid enough to adjust with swiftness and efficiency.

Stubbornness – Let me be clear. There are some things to be stubborn about, again, such as vision and values. When the organization or it’s leaders are stubborn about having things “their way”, however, or resistant to adopt new ways of accomplishing the same vision, the health of the organization will suffer. Most people struggle to follow stubborn leadership, especially when it’s protecting self-interest rather than organizational interests.

Structure – Okay, I’ll probably get in trouble for this one, even in the organization I lead, but it’s true. As much as we need structure, and even though I’m working to add structure to our organization, structure can get in the way of an organization being healthy. When people feel they are being controlled, progress is minimized and the growth and health of the organization stalls.

What would you add to my list?

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Ron Edmondson is a pastor and church leader passionate about planting churches, helping established churches thrive, and assisting pastors and those in ministry think through leadership, strategy and life. Ron has over 20 years business experience, mostly as a self-employed business owner, and he's been helping churches grow vocationally for over 10 years.