The Gospel According To The San Antonio Spurs- Leadership Lessons Pt2

In any sport, a coach must learn how to make adjustments when things are not going as planned for his team. An adjustment can be created on a “whim” during a quick time out or during halftime. Most adjustments are made during halftime. Phil Jackson (former NBA coach) and Bill Belichick (coach for the New England Patriots) are two coaches that were genius when it came to halftime adjustments. In other words, they knew how to change certain plays, certain defensive schemes and certain rotations to allow their team the best possible way to be victorious.

During the Spurs/Heat championship, adjustments became the name of the game. However there were adjustments and decisions made during that series that will be in question. For example: If Ginobli is playing in a slump, why keep him on the court? Why bench Tim Duncan in the last 50 seconds of game 6? I’m sure we can go on and on as to what we “armchair coaches” believe should have happened. Yet this leads us into lesson number two- Discern When It’s Time To Make Or Not To Make Adjustments. 

As church and/or ministry leaders, we must be discerning as to when changes to what we are doing must take place. The obvious thing to do is when something is not working, change it! Often times we can be people of habit, therefore change for some may be difficult. Dr. John Morgan, pastor of Sagemont Church in Houston, TX says it like this; “If it’s broken-fix it. If it’s not broken- make it better”. We can always find things and do things in order to make things better in our ministries. Therefore we must learn when its time to make adjustments/improvements to insure a more effective way of doing things.

With this in mind we must learn to not fear when its time to change plans. Sometimes change must happen in “mid-air”. If we are too lax, change and effectiveness will never occur. Hence becoming leaders of mediocrity rather than leaders of effectiveness. If we are used to “one way” of doing things, we must keep in mind there may be other ways of doing it better. If it means that you change position of those working under you and place them in a role that best suits their gifting; or if that means you change your position to place you in a role that best suits your gifting; change is a must. Don’t fear to change!

Every pastor or leader some time or another will have to make the tough calls and setup for the right adjustment. Not all changes are easy. Even if it means you move staff to play other roles and bring in someone that would do it better. Coach Pop was in the same predicament. Do you sit Ginobli down after a horrible game 4? He decided to start him and he became the hero in game 5. Yet game 6 was when it counted and with 8 turnovers by Ginobli, the Spurs lose a heartbreaking overtime! Learn to discern when its time to adjust.

Let’s keep in mind that the organization is bigger than us. Especially the church. We must consider in all that we do as leaders- What is best for the church? Is what I’m doing going to benefit the kingdom? Am I hurting my leader(s) by keeping him in the role that he is in? Am I truly assisting  him to do his best? Whatever the decision you make, adjustments must be made in order to keep up with what the Lord is doing in our midst. Again, don’t fear change.

Part 3 tomorrow- Be blessed!

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