The Invisible Leadership Virus — Rev. Scott Gress

Rev. Scott Gress discusses the leadership virus that is spreading throughout churches and how to overcome this virus in the following blog post:

There’s a leadership virus going on in churches. It spreads some damagingly false information about what leadership is and what leadership does. The powerful pathogen goes like this:

I’m afraid of coming across as demanding or controlling.
What does this mean? If I’m too forceful as a leader then I would put off and upset some people, perhaps even alienate some and because of that a) they may not like me b) they may leave and c) I wouldn’t be able to be a good pastor to them in the future.

So what is the “safe” (and mistaken) alternative?
To endeavor to be “pastoral” in your leadership style, i.e. more caring, passive, or accommodating, more servant hearted, more supportive of their view, less opinionated, etc. All the while trying to just focus on “pastoral” duties all the more.

What are the unintended consequences?
The church seems to lack direction or momentum. It bumps along from season to season, activity to activity and one idea to the next with no cohesive thought. The loudest (or angriest) voice in the room often gets their way, even if it is from left field. The pastoral leader gets frustrated at the decisions that often take place. The leader may even feel like leaving or quitting but often they simply retreat once again to their pastoral duties of preaching and teaching. They try to dismiss the frustrations that happen with the church council or elders or voter’s meeting. Sometimes they react by snapping at others but more likely they snap at the family dog (or worse).

To learn how to combat and overcome this leadership virus, click on: Leadership Virus.

Scott Gress is called by Lutheran Counseling Services and partners with the FL-GA District of the Lutheran Church as an independent contractor. He specializes in Leadership Training, Consulting, Coaching and Coach Training. Contact Scott to continue the conversation or experience a free sample coaching session. 561-542-4472, or

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