Leadership for Worship Leaders

Most of us were put in charge of our ministries because we were good at music. Now we have to figure out how to be leaders!  What is leadership at its essence? What does a good leader do? What are some common mistakes new leaders make? We talk about all of that and more in this month’s episode!  Enjoy! And remember, being a worship leader is more about leadership than musicianship!

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ALSO SEE:
Executive / Organizational Leadership (Unreleased Episode)
Forming and Leading Creative Teams That Produce w/ Chris Vacher
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Transcript

Alex Enfiedjian 00:09 Hello, friend and welcome back to another episode of the worship ministry training podcast. My name is Alex Enfiedjian, your host, and if you are new to the podcast, welcome. We are a monthly podcast we’ve been going for seven years strong. Every month we release a new episode, we try to make it as in depth, helpful and practical as possible. And we try to stick to one topic. So what that allows you to do is, hey, you just found us now go dig through the episode archive list, you know, scroll down on the podcast feed, and check out every single episode. But looks like it’s a topic that you need help with in this season. So find those episodes, click download, and listen and be helped. And that’s why we try to stick to just one topic per episode because it makes your listening experience easier and better, and allows you to find the help that you need in every season. So today’s episode, we’re talking about leadership. And leadership is something that we can learn. It’s something that we can develop. It’s something that we can grow in, you might not feel like the most gifted leader, you might have just been handed a guitar and said, hey, you’re in charge. And you’re like, wait, I’m a musician. And now I have to be a leader. Well, thankfully, you can learn how to be a great leader. And in this episode, we’re going to learn what is a leader and how to be a great leader. And in this episode, I interview Chris vishay, who’s the only person that I personally know who’s getting a degree in organizational servant leadership. So Chris is an expert in his field. So let’s dig in and learn from the expert Chris vishay. Hello, everybody. I am here with Chris vishay. My favorite Canadian How you doing bro? How many Canadians Do you know I’m doing great. Always good to chat with you, man. Well, I’ve had Brady shear on the podcast, and I’ve even had Carrie neuhoff on the podcast. I think Pablo Pablo OSH is like not Canadian. But he sings in front, behind accounts, right? He’s

Chris Vacher 01:55 got Canadian background. So there you go, bro. Paul is everyone’s favorite everything. So he wins in every category.

Alex Enfiedjian 02:04 He’s the nicest guy and like sincerely genuine and like caring and just open hearted and gracious. I just love him. He’s amazing. Shout out to Paul melosh.

Chris Vacher 02:14 Shout out to Paul galosh. He is every worship pastors worship pastor. And he’s like the I mean, he is a grandpa. But he’s like the generational grandfather of so many worship leaders all over the world. He is. Paul, you’re the best. We love you, man.

Alex Enfiedjian 02:29 We love you. I’ll I’ll tweet it, Paul, and he will retweet it because that’s what he does. Because he’s generous who he is. Yeah. So Well, Chris, thanks for being on. So we’re here to talk about leadership. And just full disclosure, you and I had a conversation about leadership already a month ago that I recorded for the podcast, and then you and I decided to not release it because it was kind of talking about like executive leadership. And that’s just not the realm that most people listening, live in. But what I will do for those of you who are interested in that conversation, I’ll put a link in the show notes where you can get this private unreleased episode that Chris and I did. But we want to talk about leadership. Why because being a worship leader is honestly more about leadership than musicianship. And yet, so many of us get thrown into it, because we’re good musicians. So we’re thrown in as musicians. And then we have to figure out the leadership side. And so I want to talk to you, Chris, because leadership can be learned. And that’s something that you and I talked about in that unreleased episode. And the better you can lead, the more effective you can be in making a difference in the world. And so I’m excited to talk to you, Chris, because you are getting your master’s degree in leadership. And you’re also a certified leadership coach with a company called giant worldwide and their five voices leadership model. So we’re talking to worship leaders, we’re talking to musicians, we’re talking to volunteers, lay leaders, new hires, who have been handed a ministry and asked to lead Okay, so. So, you know, let’s think about that. Like literally no experience. I was holding a guitar, I was handed a ministry. Yeah, go lead. So let’s start with this. Chris, how would you define leadership? What is leadership?

Chris Vacher 04:05 Yeah, sometimes it feels in a situation like that, that leadership is expertise, like I’m the best person at this thing. So people look at me and tell me, I’m the leader, which can be really encouraging, and can be also really terrifying to write and worship leaders as I was originally for 20 years and in full time ministry, and I still am in full time ministry. I don’t lead worship anymore. But you know, being a worship leader, you’re on a stage, you’re kind of the center of attention. We give you a microphone, they’re all kind of the symbols of like, lifting you up. And then we say now you’re now you know, not just the worship leader, maybe you’re a worship director or worship pastor and you’re leading a ministry, and you sort of are navigating, man, how do I translate this experience or this expertise into being a leader? And you know, leadership really is counter intuitively about Serving, we see that on display in the life of Jesus in so many different ways that leadership is really about serving others, helping others develop empowering people around us. It comes from a place of like, you know, understanding how Jesus has served us. And we can’t help but reflect that, in ways we want to be good at what we do, but really like leadership is about the good of other people. Sometimes, you know, these, these these definitions, like leadership is influence or, but I think the more and more I’ve seen it on display, that leadership is really other centered leadership is wanting the best for other people. And using the experience and the expertise that I have, and being you know, that opened some opportunities and some like authority pathways. But really, the focus is not on my success, or my exaltation. It’s really on about like, how can I humbly serve people around me, the people that I’m leading to, like, empower them to be all that God sees them to be all that God has created them to be? How can I help them succeed? And what their dreams are?

Alex Enfiedjian 06:12 Hmm, that’s so good. So I mean, you’re saying in a sense, like leadership is about helping people grow and develop and helping them thrive and flourish? Is that what you would? How you would kind of describe that?

Chris Vacher 06:23 Yeah, cuz I think leadership, you know, like, what is a leader? Well, it’s the person up front, or it’s the person with the loudest voice, or it’s the person with the, you know, senior, whatever in their title, or it’s the person with the nicest parking spot. And like, that’s, that’s positional leadership. And sometimes that just comes because we’ve been around the place the longest time and, but, you know, leadership is not just a position or a title, everyone can be a leader because everyone can serve. And, you know, for most worship leaders, you know, if you’re a worship leader, in a church, you’re probably at a place where there is a senior leader, there’s a senior pastor and a worship pastor, or maybe you’ve got a pastor, and you’re a volunteer worship leader, you know, how you come alongside, in your leading and help to serve others. As you serve the senior pastor serve the vision of the church, is leadership. And it’s so that’s where it’s like, that’s the counterintuitive part of it, that sometimes we associate with personality or position or title. And the truth is that leadership often looks very, very different from that.

Alex Enfiedjian 07:25 Yeah, so interesting. And you think about Jesus washing his disciples feet, like the greatest human and God who ever lived on the earth, and he’s bowing down and wiping dirty feet, you know, it’s like service is leadership. So that’s good. What do you think about the concept of like, the leader is helping people get to a more desirable future, or the leader is someone who’s leading people from point A, to point B, somewhere further down the road, a better future? What would you say about that definition?

Chris Vacher 07:54 Yeah, I would say yes. And so a leader who’s only concerned about getting to the future, and is then dragging people or forcing people or lying to people to get them there is really about serving themselves and serving their vision. But But I would also come away from from servant leadership that like, there are leaders, you know, God has given a vision to a leader about a future. And so then, when we serve people, we need to communicate to them. This is why I believe the future like this vision is really a place that we’ve got to go to. And my job is to help empower you and equip you so that we can go there together. So you know what you’re talking about this idea of like, visionary leadership, or transformational leadership. And then in church world, we talk a lot about servant leadership. And what I’m doing in my master’s degree is a combination of the two transformational servant leadership to say, Hey, there is a future that I do believe we’re going, God has called us to a place. And if you’re a pastor, if you’re leading a ministry, you know, there is this sense that Oh, man, where we are right now, we can’t say here God has called us to go forward into this place. And I need to help raise up some people around me to help us go there. And the way that I’m going to do that is by serving them, empowering them encouraging that.

Alex Enfiedjian 09:12 Yeah, do that. That’s so good. And you talked about personality, right? And, you know, we often think of leaders as big extroverted outgoing type, you know, influential, well spoken. But that’s not always the case. Right? Like I read a book called multipliers and it’s like, a lot of the best leaders are like quiet and understated. So, you know, what, what would you say about personality? And what would you say about like, the core essential trait of a leader?

Chris Vacher 09:39 Mm hmm. The question behind it is always like, are leaders born or are leaders made? Are you born to be a leader? Or are you developed into a leader and my conviction because it’s my own experience, but it’s, it’s what I believe to be true is that leaders are only made, leaders are never born people who get to be in positions of leadership because of their personality, I’m always a little concerned because you know, those, those are people who maybe have not gone through the sort of trial by fire to be developed and to be refined, you know, in my mind, one on one of my foundational understanding leadership from Psalm 78. For 72, God calls David out of the sheep with the shepherd Israel with an upright heart and guide them to the skillful hand, Shepherd them in an upright heart and guide them with a skillful hand. And the skillful hands out of leadership is always very obvious and very apparent. Those are the qualities that get us promoted. So you’re a good worship leader, you’re gonna get more opportunities to be a worship leader, and then maybe you’ll become a better worship leader. But that character side, that upright heart, that’s the thing that over time, really just takes time and intention to develop. But a leader that has a sustaining influence, in the way of Jesus is a leader who leads with upright heart, and skillful hand and again, like it’s a pendulum, and I go a little bit against the idea that leadership is just about character, because I don’t think it is leaders have a responsibility to be skillful. You know, worship leaders have to be able to do the skill of the job, and also have the character to carry the weight and the responsibility and the burden of the role. So yeah, I think, honestly, I think anyone of any personality can be a leader, because a leader is not a personality trait. A leader is made a leader, someone who, you know, sees and values, the greater good of those around them, and understands the weight of the responsibility of being in a position of leadership. Hmm,

Alex Enfiedjian 11:43 yeah. And I think the character side is really about being like a person of integrity, right? Like you’re centered and grounded, and you have disciplined your life to be followable. So in a sense, I would say, like one of the essential traits of a leader, or like, one of the foundational elements of leadership is first leading yourself, right? Yeah. So you have to lead yourself to be a person who is followable. And then you can bring people along with you. So

Chris Vacher 12:14 yep, yeah. And there’s, and you know, there’s a level of authenticity and a level of trust. I mean, you know, leaders who are humble leaders who are willing to listen to people around them, leaders who are empathetic leaders who can envision the future leaders who can understand this is what it’s going to take to get us from here to there, if you have a leader that just says, Hey, this place is not good enough, let’s go build that building, or let’s go to start this new thing, but doesn’t understand the resources that it’s going to take to get there. Or some of the gaps in personnel or whatever, there’s a responsibility on leaders, you know, and the leading yourself really comes from from a self awareness. And that is just for young leaders. It’s a thing that you grow into. And often it’s a very painful process I’ve gone through in the last few years for me, we talked about those last time, the last few years, to me have been pretty painful from a self awareness perspective, because I’ve been confronted with some of the damaging impacts of my own leadership, not because I was intentionally trying to damage people, of course not. But some of what the outcomes through how I lead. So to be aware of that, to have people kind of hold up a mirror to you. I mean, God is very gracious, loving way, you know, the Spirit of God comes in searches our hearts and helps us to see ourselves in ways that we can’t see just by looking in the mirror. But to become more self aware to be open to the possibility that maybe just maybe we’re not perfect, and we’re not fully developed. And then to say like, oh, okay, that’s who I am now. And that’s not who I want to be anymore. How do I lead myself to get there? It’s the same, you know, what, what’s the vision for your own life? What’s the vision of the kind of leader that you want to be? There is a self leadership aspect. And we have to Yeah, you’re right, we have to do that first. Before we can lead others lead yourselves where you lead others. And that only comes through this sort of journey of self awareness, self awareness. That’s huge. And then also,

Alex Enfiedjian 14:13 I while you’re talking, I was thinking like, and constantly learning, like you said, I know I’m not arrived, I know, I’m not perfect. I know I have to keep growing. And I think like in order to be a leader, you have to be continually learning continually growing like you and I were talking offline about how your church wants to build, you know, this big thing. And it’s like, but we want to invite other people into the learning journey we want to be I forgot what word you use, but like, we want to be the primary learner and let other people follow behind us.

Chris Vacher 14:40 When not when I’m talking with young leaders, the ones who are curious and who are asking lots of questions. I love just asking young leaders what they’re reading. Because to me, like, if you’re curious and you want to learn new things, and you’re already kind of going outside of the box that you’re in to me is such a great song. There’s a leader that’s ready to grow and is willing to have hard conversations about where growth needs to happen. And I think looking back on my own life, I think that’s a characteristic that served me really well. I mean, I read like crazy, and I post about it all the time, just what I’m reading. There’s sort of this, like, insatiable desire, and it’s not that I’m not satisfied with, you know, what I know now isn’t good enough. But it’s really just saying, like, if we are going to continue to grow into the future, what are the skills that I’m missing? Or man right now with what’s going on? No one has ever been a worship leader in a pandemic, who’s been who’s alive right now. But like how, as church leaders, I how do we lead? In this world of chaos that we’re in right now? I don’t know. I’ve never done it. And so to be reading books, and having conversations with people, just a willingness to learn and to be open to these possibilities of of what might be out there. Hmm, that’s good.

Alex Enfiedjian 15:58 So when it comes to new leaders, or maybe inexperienced leaders, what are the some of the common mistakes or struggles that you see most frequently? Hey, we’ll get back to the episode in just a second. But I wanted to let you know about four brand new video courses that I’ve created just for you. These courses are designed specifically to help you improve important aspects of your ministry, I have a course on team building, how to build healthy, happy, high functioning, vibrant teams, there’s a course on set building, how to build epic, engaging God centered moving passionate sets worship sets, I have an increasing congregational engagement course like how to see more participation from your church during times of worship. And then I have a worship leader Foundation’s course to teach you the biblical roles, goals and tool of a worship leader. And the prices are incredibly affordable, ranging from just $10 to $49. Or you can get the entire bundle for $79. That’s four courses for $79. If you enter the promo code, WM t, podcast, W, MT podcast at checkout, that’ll get you all four courses for just $79. And that’s something that your church should be paying for. Now, if you lead worship in a developing country, or a third world country and your church or you cannot afford the courses, I have a full scholarship available for you, you can click on the scholarship link at the top of the courses page. So just fill out the form, I will gladly gift you the courses for free. But if you’re buying the courses, they come with a full money back guarantee. So you can purchase with confidence knowing that if you don’t love it for any reason at all, you can get your money back, you guys can check all the courses out at worship ministry training, comm slash courses, worship ministry training, comm slash courses. And if you do by us, W mt podcast for 25% off, check it out, the links are in the show notes. And now let’s get back into the episode. When it comes to new leaders or maybe inexperienced leaders. What are some of the common mistakes or struggles that you see most frequently?

Chris Vacher 17:58 Yeah. So I see new leaders being given too much authority, too soon I did or they are they they perceive that they have more authority like I think it was Brooke Fraser from Hillsong tweeted this and it kind of went mini viral but like leading out of your level of trust. And the level of trust that you’ve been given by the leaders above you sort of determines or defines your leadership authority. And I see it with young leaders and and I did it for sure that you sort of you overstep your leadership boundaries. And honestly, I think that’s part of young leaders discovering what the boundaries are. It’s like, Simba, it’s the young lion going to the elephant graveyard when his dad said, don’t do that. So every young leader has to go through that. But if you’re not aware that you’re not doing it, you can cause a lot of damage. I think young leaders are sometimes reluctant to listen to older, mature voices, we got to be open to that. And I think the third thing is that often just young leaders, there isn’t always a lot of clarity on how do I get better? How do I actually become a better leader? How do I actually get better at leading services? How do I actually get better at raising up team members? How do I actually get better at discipling my congregation through worship, and, and so young leaders linked up with older, more mature leaders, working through a development plan together becomes really, really powerful.

Alex Enfiedjian 19:33 That’s so good. I wrote down a few thoughts too, and like you had already hit on a couple of them, like rushing ahead without getting counsel, and then causing a bunch of damage because of that, you know, and one thing I’ve seen a lot is thinking that you’re communicating clearly. But you’re not you’re like I said that, like why aren’t people following me? Well, because you have to say 250 times Welcome to leadership, you know, so, so those are some of the mistakes and the struggles. What are some of the key competencies of a great leader like when Chris vishay thinks of a great leader, what is that leader? Do? What is he able to do? Or she able to do? What are the key characteristics or competencies?

Chris Vacher 20:12 When I think about people that I have had the privilege of leading who then, you know, really rise up, I think I see their leadership being effective in three directions. So, an effectively a really good leader understands how to lead up. So if you’re in a church with multiple staff, or you’re leading a ministry, understanding that you are part of a team that there’s a bigger picture, and how can my leadership serve the leader above me? That’s not always obvious. And so you know, developing developing relationship with your senior pastor, which I’ve been there, it can be tough. The senior pastor worship leader relationship can be difficult can be tense at times. But if the senior pastor understands the desire from the worship leader to invest in that relationship, and really to serve up by leading up, I think that’s the one thing for sure, you know, leading across so if a worship leader leading a congregation leading as part of a staff team, understanding how I contribute to the overall success, and then leading down, but really, that’s a way of raising up So how am I investing in the next generation of leaders, that you know, every leader is an interim leader. So at some point, you know, you and your role me and my role, it’s going to come to an end, you know, that might be my decision or someone else’s decision. But who is coming up behind me to fill my seat. So those are the three directions I’ve always seen, leaders be really effective in up across and down, and leading, and each of those directions takes different abilities, different competencies.

Alex Enfiedjian 21:49 So honestly, it sounds like it’s all about interpersonal relationship and communication, like your ability to communicate up sideways and down is what makes you an effective leader.

Chris Vacher 22:01 Was that what you would say? You have to be in relationship with people you lead, because again, leadership is about serving and empowering and equipping? Well, if I don’t know you, and I don’t know what that means for you in your life, how can I lead you, leading by just declaring and saying, These are the plans and this is what we’re doing. That’s the leader that’s dragging people along, to get to the place that they want to go, I have to be in relationship, think about the life of Jesus, how much time he invested in relationship with people and then was able to really impact and influence and change the course of all of human history. So if you don’t have relationship, and that’s another thing is I mean, that’s tough for worship leaders to a bunch of artistic personalities, and people get offended over stuff. And people don’t like the songs were choosing and that you chose this person to sing it and not that person. There’s there’s so much possibility for offense in worship ministry, that you have to deal with those things in the context of relationships. And the good news is, when you have people who are leading ministries, who are able to do that in the context of relationship by serving one another, now we can keep on moving forward. So yeah, it’s it has to happen in the context of relationship.

Alex Enfiedjian 23:16 Yeah, so good. I guess when I think about characteristics and competencies, like I think you have to care about people, which you’ve already talked about care and serve people, you have to have vision, and then you have to be able to communicate that vision. Well, like, Is there anything you would add to that list of competencies?

Chris Vacher 23:35 Yeah, there’s all kinds and you can get into kind of the academic side, so transformational servant leadership and undoing and there are sort of core competencies around idealized influence and all these kinds of things. But I’d say like, the desire of a leader, if the starting point is, as I’ve been asked to lead this thing, my starting point is to serve the people around me as we’re going in this direction we’re heading. The truth is like, if that’s the posture of your heart, the competencies get shaped and formed over time. With sometimes what leaders do, especially young leaders, is they want to say like, just teach me the mechanics of leadership. And there are some mechanics and there are some ways to do it, especially around Yeah, how we communicate and how we interview. But to do that, without first doing the internal stuff, you know, the self awareness stuff and the heart posture stuff, makes that outward external behavior, just mechanics. So yeah, over over time, we learn how to speak to people, we learn how to encourage people, we learn, as you and I were talking before we learn how not just how we speak, but how we are heard and those are different things. We learn about the power of wisdom and making good choices. Based on making previous bad choices. We learn about the value of mentors and bring older seasoned leaders we learn the times when we should really sort of push the envelope and really encourage and almost admonish people to kind of keep on going, keep on going. And when there are the times when we need to back off and sort of de escalate the situation, those those all come over time. More through in my life, they’ve come more through failures than successes. But all of those things done without the first attention being given to the posture of our own hearts, then just it just becomes a bunch of outward mechanics.

Alex Enfiedjian 25:29 That’s really good. So we’ve talked about, like leaders always needing to grow. What are three things? It doesn’t have to be three. But what are three things that leaders can do right now that will immediately strengthen their leadership? And I know the first one is going to at least one of them is going to be self awareness. But what are some things we can do to strengthen our leadership?

Chris Vacher 25:49 Yeah, I would say, go to the person who leads you. So if you’re on staff at a church and you report to your senior pastor, go to them and ask them this question will not be fun. And it might not be a fun conversation, you might not like what you hear. But if you ask the person you report to, what can I do to be a better leader, and then start to do that. The second thing, and I’m going to go in context of the directions I talked about earlier, is find a peer, who’s a little bit ahead of you and say, How can I get better and listen to what they say. And then if you are really brave, and this can sometimes be very, very painful. If you have great relationships with people that you lead, ask them how you can lead them better, you might be shocked at their answers. Because you might feel like you’re doing what they ask. And what you hear from them might just be a simple thing. So ask people around you what you can do and listen really closely to those. The second thing would be if you don’t have a leadership mentor in your life, if you don’t have somebody, that’s several steps ahead of you get someone like that. And it might take some time and might take asking a few different people in different ways. But to find that, and the third thing, I’m not selling this here, but I think to find a way to find something like a leadership coach or development plan, that puts some very intentional steps in front of you of how to get better don’t just wish for development to happen, and believe it’s going to happen by accident over time, nothing, no part of our life improves. Accidentally, my marriage doesn’t get better accidentally my relation my kids and I get better accidentally. We’re all we’re always intentional about those things. The same is true about leaders, when we’re intentional about our leadership development, we’ll grow as leaders Hmm,

Alex Enfiedjian 27:35 yeah, I did a conversation with Aaron keys from 10,000 fathers. And yeah, at the very end, he said, like, the best baseball players in the world have 12 coaches on their team. So like the best players get specialized coaches, to like, comb over every move they make to help them keep getting better. And it’s like, if the best in the world needed coach, like, How much more do we need to coach you know, and so, so it’s awesome. I think that’s really great and good advice, you know, and one thing that I do is, at the end of the year, I send out a survey monkey anonymous survey to my team, and I’m just like, there’s like 10 questions on it. And I guess I could post it in the links, if I remember to do that. But, you know, it’s just like, how are things going? How can I do better, like blah, blah, blah, and just get anonymous data? Because sometimes people don’t want to tell you to your face, hey, you suck, you know. But that’s good. And then reading books, obviously, is so so important. You talked about that earlier, it’s like, I try to get through two books a month in areas that I need to grow. And whether it’s theology, whether it’s about worship, whether it’s about management, or time management, or whatever I need to grow in, like, I’m just always reading books. So I have a list. And then like, every year I buy just like a stack of books, and I just plow through them. So awesome. Speaking of books, what are two books that you think every worship leader should 100%? Read? I mean, not every worship leader, every leader should read every

Chris Vacher 28:57 leader. It’s not in my list of two. But if I don’t say it, someone’s gonna ask me why I didn’t say it. The Bible, if you are not reading scripture as part of Yes, your own discipleship and your relationship with the Lord, but also through sort of the lens of leadership as well. It don’t make it sort of a functional, it’s my homework. But the Bible talks a lot about who leaders are and how leaders lead Good, bad and ugly. So there’s a lot in there, I will give you, I’ll give you three, because two of them have been very influential for me and one’s a more recent one. So Patrick lencioni, the ideal team player, it’s been it’s really great. He basically talks about what characteristics you should always look for as you’re building a team. So ideal team player by Patrick lencioni. The second one and this is like an internal one is called the inner voice of love by Henry now in its very dear, it’s not it’s not a leadership development book. But for leaders who might not really know how to do this internal stuff and how to do this self awareness stuff and How’s the posture of my heart doing? The inner voice of love by Henry now is a great book. Then the third one, it’s a book that I’ve been reading recently. And it is really got my brain spinning a lot. And the title is canoeing the mountains, Christian Leadership and uncharted territory by Tod bolsinger. He’s a professor of fuller in California. And he uses the analogy of Lewis and Clark. charting the course to the Pacific Ocean. And what they expected was they were going to gonna go up to middle America, and then just go down towards the Pacific. And all of a sudden, they realized, Oh, yeah, there’s the Rocky Mountains in between. And so how do you canoe through mountains? How do you get through this obstacle, when you have never been there before you’re not prepared? And like, what a great analogy for where we are right now. So canoeing the mountains by Tod, bolsinger. It is sending my mind into a tailspin in some really, really great way. So I would recommend that for sure.

Alex Enfiedjian 30:57 That’s awesome. That’s awesome. It’s hard to narrow it down. Hmm. I think probably my two favorite I mean, gosh, there’s so many, but just like, purely leadership type stuff would be like, john Maxwell has the five levels of leadership. So like, just helpful to understand where, where you’re at with different people that you’re trying to lead. And then also, he has a book called, like, the, I think it’s like the 15 invaluable laws of growth or something, but it’s all about growth and how growth completely changes your life. And I think those two books were really have been really helpful to me. I mean, there’s so many, right, I mean, we should probably just put a list of all of our books into the show notes that we love. Okay, so yeah, there’s a couple 100 there’s a couple 100? I know, I know. Okay, so you know, you’re constantly growing you, we’re going to talk about the five voices stuff, because I just signed up for that as well. But before we do like you, you’re getting a master’s degree in leadership. And there’s not a lot of people who have done that. But my question for you is, how has your view of leadership changed since when you from when you first became a leader, to to this point in your life, where you’re now finishing a master’s degree on leadership? How has your view changed?

Chris Vacher 32:06 Yeah, I would say mostly, this re understanding of expertise, that that leadership comes from being the best at something to leadership is about, there is the authority that comes with a position, but it’s really about serving and empowering and equipping others. And, you know, in my 20s, and if people are listening, you know, you’re in your 20s, or 30s, as a young leader. If you’re like me, you know, you’re given a challenge, or you’re given an opportunity, you’re given an objective, yeah, I’ll knock that thing out of the park. Man, I will crush it on this. And generally I did, I would knock it out of the park. And so success gets you more opportunity. And I would generally do very well gets more opportunity. And over time, what I didn’t realize is that, that unintentionally causes relational damage with people running because what you sort of start to sort of like habitual eyes in your life is my own success is what matters. And so I don’t mean to do this, but people around me begin to become the way that I achieve success. And that is poison for a leader, because who wants to be led that way? I don’t want to be used that way by the person who leads me so why would and of course, it’s not intentional, but people can very intuitively pick up on that. And so to get my eyes away from my own success, and actually to redefine it to say, my success comes through the success of others. So you are talking, I’m on staff at a church and I have staff who report to me. And as we’ve begun journey together as a new staff team, this is what I’m saying to them. My job is to help you win. And if if I do that, I win. Hmm. It’s not you are here to help me win, you are here to help me succeed. My job and my role is to help you succeed. But now we have conversation about what your objectives are, and what your passions are and what you’re struggling with and how I can help you. And as we do that, together, my win comes by helping you win. So it’s a it’s a pretty big, I mean, it gets unpacked in lots of big, big ways. It’s really, really foundational. And honestly, I think it’s not just it’s not a switch, you can flip. I think it’s a it’s a bit of a journey for leaders to go through. Because it takes some time to be aware of how am I doing that? or How could I lead differently in this situation? or What did I do there that maybe damaged that relationship unintentionally, just take some time, but it has, it has for sure been a really foundational change for me.

Alex Enfiedjian 34:58 Yeah. It’s huge. I love that you Use the analogy that leadership is a journey. It’s not just something you can flip a switch to. That’s really helpful. And what you’re saying, I mean, here’s a couple like secular examples, and then we’ll do a biblical example. But basically, like, what you’re saying is Zig Ziglar says, like, if you can help people get what they want, you can get whatever you want, right? And that’s kind of I mean, it’s basically flipping it. Like, it’s not about you. It’s about serving people. And by serving people, you in a sense, you get elevated, even though that’s not necessarily the end goal, right. But I found it interesting that, like, I listened to some management podcasts, and they’re kind of just secular jobs or whatever. And I guess one of the things they’re doing when new employees come onto staff teams now and in the secular market is they’re asking them, like, what do you want to get out of life? Like, that’s one of the first questions they ask, what do you want to get out of life? And how can I help you get that, and that just like, motivates people, because you’re not using them for your ends, you’re helping them get their ends, and then they’re more motivated for that. And then here’s a biblical kind of example, I was thinking, as you were talking like Jesus, who’s obviously the greatest servant, who ever lived on the earth. He’s amazing serving people all the time. And yet, when he commissioned his disciples, He says, you’re gonna do even greater things than me like, this is about you advancing the mission. Yeah, I could stay on the earth. And I could advance the mission myself. But no, I’m going to empower you to take the gospel to the ends of the world. And you will do even greater things than me, which is kind of mind boggling statement. And it’s hard to even believe that like, really, Jesus, we’re going to be scraping. Yeah, but anyway. So Chris, you’re, you’re a certified coach with a company called giant. I just signed up for it. I took the assessment. I love it. I’m excited to dive into the material. I haven’t yet. But I’m excited to like, tell us about the five voices leadership framework, and tell us about your coaching. And tell us why you’re excited to offer these things to the listeners.

Chris Vacher 36:54 Yeah, I have all of these different personality profile things. They’re all helpful. And I’ve done a lot. And we were talking about enneagram earlier, and I think super helpful. The more Windows you can have into your own self, who you are, how God has created you how your experiences shaped that and his great, great, five voices, what is really exciting in my mind, it starts by asking the question, what’s it like to be on the other side of you? It’s not just about what you say, it’s about how you’re heard? And how does our leadership voice impact people around us beyond the words that we say? And so as I’m trying, as a leader to really think about how am I influencing and shaping and empowering and developing, I have to be aware that what I’m saying might not be what is being heard. And then I have a responsibility to lead myself to lead others like we were talking about before. So five voices is an assessment. It’s based on Myers Briggs, but it just it just way, way, way, way way simplifies it down into one of five primary voices pioneer connector, creative nurturer Guardian, every person has a primary voice, each primary voice has a different way of seeing the world, interpreting the world talking about the world, thinking about the workplace and their role in the workplace, and whether they are more future oriented or present oriented. And all of these things aren’t necessarily said through words, but they’re beneath the surface they’re below. They’re behind all of the words and all the questions that we ask. So five voices says, Here’s your voice, use your voice order, because we all have a primary and secondary voice and consciously aware of some of these, and we are unconsciously unaware of other things in them. And then the coaching says, Okay, if that’s if that’s your primary voice, what’s it like to be on the other side of you, and we lead people through a process that helps them understand their voice, helps them understand what it’s like to be on the other side of them, and then put together a very tangible concrete leadership development plan, with lots of tools that moves beyond five voices that talks about how do I lead people? How do I empower them? How do I how if I’m leading a team, how do I lead a team to liberate them, not to dominate them, and not to abdicate my leadership, but actually to see them flourish, and to see them help other people flourish. And so it’s been it’s been a pretty great journey. I’ve been doing it this year and working with leaders all over the world, I guess, just helping them to take some next steps in their own leadership. And it’s been a ton of fun. I’m using it in. I’m using it every day in my job with those that I lead, and I’m thinking about it all the time and in conversation kind of introducing some of these concepts into what we do in my role. But yeah, this sort of more formalized coaching is something I’ve started doing recently and it’s a ton of fun. It’s so cool. So

Alex Enfiedjian 39:53 where can people get that content and connect with you? And then I have one last question about leadership. Yeah, the

Chris Vacher 40:00 best way is to go to Chris vashi calm. And if you go to Chris, calm, and then there’s a button there that that says take a free assessment. And that will lead you to a giant you do a free assessment, it kicks back a PDF that gives you your five voices report.

Alex Enfiedjian 40:16 Yeah, and a ton of the content on giants website is free, completely free. So

Chris Vacher 40:20 a ton. It’s unbeliev. What these guys have created. And the really exciting thing for me is, it is from the place of transformational servant leadership, whether they know it or not, that I’m able to see all this stuff through this lens of what I’m doing, that there’s a massive, massive library of free leadership development resources that you can work through, that your team can work through. It’s pretty incredible.

Alex Enfiedjian 40:40 Yeah. So Chris, I just I’d love for you to give just final parting advice to the leaders listening, what would you like to leave them with?

Chris Vacher 40:51 Yeah, well, that’s a small question. I think, you know, if anything is has come up in this conversation, where, you know, you felt your heart race a little bit, or sometimes I’m remember times as a worship leader, where I would hear someone talk about something and say, like, I know, I need to deal with that. And it would come a little bit as condemnation or shame. And my response to that would be well, like, I’m not gonna deal with it, I’ll work it out in the future. My real encouragement would be like, if there’s something that has come up today in conversation, don’t run from it. Don’t be afraid that, you know, there’s, there’s something in your life that God might want to do through it. And if it’s about your relationship with your senior pastor, or, you know, the whole side of self awareness, what’s the posture of your heart or this challenge that leadership isn’t about? position? It’s about empowering others. They like what what is it about that thing that is, is getting your attention? And don’t don’t run from it? Don’t shy away from it, you know, is there a trusted relationship where you can bring that up in conversation and see what God might be doing in there?

Alex Enfiedjian 42:02 That’s so good. Thanks, Chris. Chris, I’ll put all the links in the show notes for your beautiful brand new website and all that stuff. And I’m sure this episode’s gonna help a lot of people. So thanks for your time, dude. My pleasure. Thanks, Alex. Thanks, everybody. Alright, that’s it for this month’s episode. I hope it was a help to you. If it was, please help us by sending it on to a friend encouraging them to listen, and be sure to subscribe to the podcast by pressing the little subscribe button in whatever podcast app you are using. And remember, leadership is a learned skill you can improve and get better. And Jesus was the greatest leader of all, and he said, if you want to be great in the kingdom of God, you must be a servant of all. So let’s serve our people. Well love them well care for them. Well, you are the chief servant. And remember to check out all of our brand new courses for worship leaders at worship ministry training comm slash courses and use promo code WM t podcast to get 25% off any course or the whole bundle. Alright, God bless you guys. I will see you next month for another helpful episode. See you then.