Tracking Benefit Hours • Inheriting a Team • Watching Eye Contact: Management Roundup
Trends, tips, ideas, and stats to help church leaders manage well this week.
Tracking Benefit Hours • Inheriting a Team • Watching Eye Contact: Management Roundup

1. Complete this top church task by year's end. "If your fiscal year-end is December 31, you have to complete all the necessary steps for closing the fiscal year. … Here is one of the top ten things you can do to make the end of the year easier: Track employee benefit hours. Your annual financial statements must include the value of any benefit hours (such as vacation time) paid out, times the pay rate. That will be easier to do if you calculate the amounts earned and used on a monthly basis" ("The Top 10 Year-End Financial Tasks," by Vonna Laue, ChurchLawAndTax.com).

2. Use celebrations to build excitement in your team. "(I)t seems much less common to celebrate the things—big and small—that a team has accomplished together with God's help. Let me suggest one reason that you should make celebration a regular practice in your church or ministry or non-profit:

Celebration can fan embers into flames. Celebration doesn't have to be limited to major milestones. Sometimes a leader chooses to celebrate the small stories that can build momentum and catalyze a future priority.

One other advantage of celebration is that it has a great cost-benefit ratio—it's free and requires little time, but it can have a big organizational impact" ("Time to Celebrate," by Mike Bonem, MikeBonem.com)

3. Taking over a new team. "Taking over as the leader of a team is daunting. … (I)t's important to avoid three common mistakes that new leaders make when trying to ease the transition:

  • Being a friend rather than a leader. Investing too much energy in befriending the team can confuse the power relationship.
  • Expressing frustration with the quality of the team. If your expectations are different (than the previous leader), you need to help the team make that shift.
  • Attempting to force trust too quickly. Until team members have had time to see how you handle uncomfortable topics too much candor will do more harm than good. Let trust build over time"

(Adapted from "Pitfalls to Avoid When You Inherit a Team," by Liane Davey).

4. Moderate your eye contact. "It's not fair, but when you start to progress in your career, your moves come under scrutiny. And you could be undermining yourself without even realizing it. Here is one way: You make too little (or too much) eye contact. Whether it's a one-on-one conversation or a presentation to 100 people, we know it's essential to make eye contact to establish trust and exude confidence. But don't go overboard, says Halley Bock from Fierce Inc. Too much eye contact can range from seeming mildly creepy to downright aggressive ("7 Ways You're Unconsciously Undermining Yourself," by Gwen Moran, FastCompany.com).

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