categories: church, development, leadership, preaching
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December 2nd, 2009

by Craig Groeschel

9 comments (+ Add)

The Right People

Asking the right questions is helpful to get valuable feedback. It’s also important to direct the right questions to the right people.

When it comes to feedback, not all people are equal.

Two groups that shouldn’t always be trusted include:

  • Your greatest critics.
  • Your greatest fans.

These groups shouldn’t be ignored. You can occasionally learn a lot from your critics or your fans. But, generally speaking, your critics will be harder on you without understanding your full context and your fans will overlook ways to help you improve.

If you are a pastor or leader, you might be more challenged than you realize to find the right people. When I ask for feedback from my staff (or even church members), they might be slightly intimidated and hesitate to tell me the truth.

Developing a trusted group that can be objective is invaluable.

I’ve searched for constructive feedback from hundreds of people over the years, and have found a group of individuals who understand the importance of truthful and helpful feedback.

These people weren’t necessarily born with this gift. We have actually developed a relationship and trust that draws out feedback. They see it as a part of their ministry and I see it as a helpful gift.

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  1. Dec 2, 2009 at 6:58 am

    One Thing I have learned over time is that You WILL NEVER win over people who do not like you. Studies show 10% of people in general will not like you. It does not matter what you do. Also the more you are in the public eye the louder the critics and “fans” get. As the Grinch said…NOISE…NOISE…NOISE!!!

    For someone to be in a pastor role or “public role” (especially if it is controversial)..You have to have a VERY STRONG Backbone and an amazing core of TRUE friends and God/self awareness. I truly believe only a select few can HANDLE the “fame” and “harsh backlash” that comes with being a PASTOR in front the masses. To me it is funny how many people WANT a pulpit but how few can TRULY handle it. Great Post!

  2. Dec 2, 2009 at 7:39 am

    I guess I haven’t thought of it in this way. As I read the post certain people came to my mind in our church who I can trust to give me the straight scoop. Those are the ones I’ll seek out next time I need feedback.
    Thank you.

  3. Dec 2, 2009 at 8:22 am

    Amen! After hearing Craig at the C3 Conference in Texas, I thought I was to wave my “God-called-me” hall pass, ignore ALL the voices, and march on. I’m glad I’ve read this entry this morning.

    If we aren’t careful, we will only go to those people who will deliver the feedback we want. It’s balance. And while those individuals are hard to find, they are invaluable to our growth and service for the King.

  4. Dec 2, 2009 at 9:35 am

    Jenn Cady, well said. I think it’s something every pastor works on. Great post today.

  5. Dec 2, 2009 at 2:33 pm

    “Develop a trusted group” is a good saying. To me, that is where the rub lies. Finding those who have your best interest at heart because they love and care. No one needs torn down constantly nor does one need a “yes” person. Appreciate your thoughts Craig.

  6. Dec 2, 2009 at 4:02 pm

    Happy Birthday CG!

  7. Dec 2, 2009 at 6:26 pm

    Good stuff Craig - we recently did an ‘imagine’ session at a church getaway in regards to many things but largely starting a new church in Tuggeranong (Canberra Australia) and our new evening gathering where we allowed are crew to chat about where we are going. There does at times seem to be a tendency to think we should only go with those that ‘are totally on board’ or ‘you have to listen to those that oppose you, they are given by God’. We have some really great crew though that are balanced and insightful with a heart for God and people.

  8. Dec 3, 2009 at 10:35 pm

    SO true! One of those things you never think about but is so helpful

  9. Dec 4, 2009 at 11:51 am

    Heh…I originally typed out “Great post, Craig” but then deleted it because I didn’t want to be considered a fan.

    Instead, I am an honest, helpful critic. And this post was great!