5 Ways to Minimize Ministry Silos
Patrick Lencioni brought the concept of silos into the leadership conversation with this great book Silos, Politics, and Turf Wars. Silos occur in organizations and churches when leaders act like their ministry or team is the only one that matters. A silo attitude results in that leader or team only supporting, giving, or attending functions that pertain to them. It can kill a ministry and result in these problems:
- Unhealthy competition
- Hurt feelings
- Lack of trust
- Fighting over limited resources
- Foot dragging
So how can a leader minimize ministry silos? Below I suggest a key foundation and then five pillars to build on that foundation to rid your ministry of silos.
If you want to change your culture to minimize and remove silos, build from the bottom up. Build a solid foundation on the biblical concept of unity. Teach and train your leaders often about unity, remembering that unity does not mean uniformity. God gives each of us unique gifts and abilities which creates a healthy church. Keep these and other Scriptures in front of your leaders.
- "How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity!" (Psalm 133:1, NIV)
- "May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus .... " (Romans 15:15, NIV)
- "Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace" (Ephesians 4:3, NIV).
- "I appeal to you, dear brothers and sisters, by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, to live in harmony with each other. Let there be no divisions in the church. Rather, be of one mind, united in thought and purpose." (1 Corinthians 1:10, NLT).
Next, place these five pillars on that unity foundation.
- Make sure you have a clear, shared vision.
Keep your church’s mission, vision, and values before your leaders. If you’re fuzzy on mission, vision, and values, I recommend Will Mancini’s book Church Unique.
- Build trust between all your leaders.
When leaders trust each other it increases the trust neurotransmitter, oxytocin, which builds camaraderie. The more people trust each other, studies show that they will co-operate more. (De Dreu, 2012).
- Encourage your leaders to talk to each other.
Schedule consistent leadership meetings so that leaders can hear each other’s stories and needs. Start a leadership e-newsletter and send it to every leader. The more in common leaders share with other leaders, the more productive and motivated they’ll be.
- Remind leaders that it’s not all about them.
Remind them that they are part of a larger purpose and that great teams look out for each other. Foster this attitude among your leaders. “How can I help my fellow leaders, even though it’s not my ministry?”
- Teach leaders to step inside each other’s shoes.
When we see life from another’s perspective, we are more giving and more likely to help. It’s a concept called mentalizing (Waytz et al., 2012).
Are silos an issue in your ministry? How do you deal with them?
De Dreu, C.K.W. (2012) Oxytocin modulates cooperation within and competition between groups: An integrative review and research agenda. Hormones and Behavior, 61 (3), pp.419–428.
Waytz, A., Zaki, J. & Mitchell, J.P. (2012) Response of Dorsomedial Prefrontal Cortex Predicts Altruistic Behavior. Journal of Neuroscience, 32 (22), pp.7646–7650.
- Adam Smith published the blogpost The Biggest Threat to Your Relationship and How to Avoid It – Jackie Bledsoe.
- Lara Krupicka published the blogpost Anticipation: What’s Next for Moms Who Want to Live the Bucket List Life?.
- Valerie Perrine just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost High School Footballer Pull Off An Incredibly Inspirational Interview.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost How To Stick With Youth Ministry For The Long Haul.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost Children’s Book Shares Transgender Story With Kids Ages 4-8.
- solomon david published the blogpost Effective Steps to Setup WordPress Multisite With An Ease.
- Jonathan Pearson published the blogpost Overcoming Our Identity Crisis: A Guest Post By Michael Perkins.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost Cheerleaders Defy School’s Ban, Lead Crowd in Lord’s Prayer.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost ‘Slenderman’ Costumes Sold in County Where Girl Was Brutally Stabbed.
- solomon david published the blogpost Mobile Web or Mobile Application – Which One You Need Most For Your Online Store?.
- Greg Atkinson published the blogpost Big Announcement: I’m Joining the Staff of Transformation Church.
- Preston Yancey published the blogpost when you can read the first chapter of tables in the wilderness for free.
- George Mark just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Judy Douglass published the blogpost Dare Mighty Things: Your Life Matters Guest Post by Halee Gray Scott.
- Lindsey Bell published the blogpost Become a Better Mom – Week 4 Challenge: Go Hands Free.
- Natasha Crain published the blogpost 4 Easy Ways Parents Can Use the Internet to Grow Giving Hearts.
- GerDonna Ellis just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Kallie Ybarra published the blogpost Cheap Huggies at Rite Aid and Money-Maker Colgate at Target.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost Gameplay Broadcasting May Be the New Big Thing in Streaming Entertainment.
- Debbie Harris published the blogpost Standing On The Never Changing Truths Found In The Word Of God by Debbie Harris.
- Debbie Harris published the blogpost All That Really Matters Is Christ’s Approval by Debbie Harris.
- Greg Flagg published the blogpost Prayer for the Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost (Ordinary Time).
- Caitlin Wilson published the blogpost Sunday Refreshments with Michael Yankoski | Is Faith Just An Idea?.
- Amy Lathrop published the blogpost Sunday Refreshments with Michael Yankoski | Is Faith Just An Idea?.