Husband. Dad to 5. Student Ministry Pastor. Follower of Jesus. Yatta yatta.


For a seminary class last quarter I read some article about leadership vs. management.  I don’t recall where I read it or who wrote it or the real debate the article was about.  But I do recall this two sentence truth that has been mulling around in my head for a while.

  • If you don’t have a problem, you don’t need a leader. 
  • If you don’t have complexity, you don’t need a manager.
Stew on that for a while.
I have been.  Here’s some stuff I’ve been marinating on about these two realities:
  • Problems are essential to leadership.  If you don’t have a problem to solve, then you are not having meeting, you’re having a social club.
  • Leadership sees a problem as an opportunity for action the same way Managers see complexity as an opportunity for teamwork. 
  • Complex problems require a leader’s vision AND a manager’s insights to produce a real solution.
  • Problems and Complexity both grow exponentially in the dark.   Ignoring problems creates problems.  Ignoring complexity increases complexity. 
  • My family has enough problems to constantly require leadership.  Our family has enough complexity to constantly require management.  Neither are negotiable skill sets we can avoid developing.
  • I enjoy leading until the problems become trivial. I enjoy managing until the solutions become predictable.

Leave a Reply