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What can leaders accomplish, really?
Despite personal competence, charisma, expertise, or credentials, the reality is that a leader will be successful in bringing about change to the extent the organization allows.
One of the most important things leaders do is bring about necessary changes appropriate to the life of the organization during the leader’s tenure in office.
Yet, organizations tend to resist change, even when necessary.
Regardless of the level of “push” a leader is comfortable with (seductive collaboration or Machiavellian strategies), any leader will only be able to bring about the changes the organization allows.
Insight: if you want to be an effective leader, choose a healthy and resilient organization that will allow you to do what is necessary. Otherwise, your tenure will likely be a constant push against inertia.
Israel Galindo is Associate Dean for Lifelong Learning at the Columbia Theological Seminary. He directs the Pastoral Excellence Program at Columbia seminary. He is the author of the bestseller, The Hidden Lives of Congregations (Alban), Perspectives on Congregational Leadership (Educational Consultants), and A Family Genogram Workbook (Educational Consultants), with Elaine Boomer & Don Reagan, and Leadership in Ministry: Bowen Theory in the Congregational Context.
His books on education include Academic Leadership: Practical Wisdom for Deans and Administartors, Mastering the Art of Instruction,The Craft of Christian Teaching (Judson), How to be the Best Christian Study Group Leader (Judson), and Planning for Christian Education Formation (Chalice Press).