Monday, 15 December 2014

C of E to groom talent for top jobs (1)

When this 'news' item appeared in the Church Times the response from those I engage with was, 'No change there then!' For despite the apparently egalitarian nature of ministry, the reality is that amongst the qualifications for the 'top jobs', attendance of a good school and Oxbridge feature large.

Paul Handley's article on the as yet unpublished report: Talent Management for Future Leaders and Leadership Development for Bishops and Deans: A new approach, tells me that it promises a 'culture change for the leadership of the Church' as it seeks to train up and develop the senior staff by means of a mandatory university level management training programme with modules like:

Building healthy organisations,

Leading growth, and

Reinventing the ministry.

Being church the training will be supported by theological reflection, prayer, and 'a spiritual retreat' (yeeha!).

Having done courses such a these in formal settings during the course of my previous work life, and having experienced senior church staff in action*, I have to say that this might not be a bad thing. Exposure to Herzburg, Maslow and Mayo might just transform some of the exceedingly nice (yet just a little inept) people in the top echelons of Church (and I'm sure they know who they are).

Thinking back to the hours spent in seminars reading case studies and in syndicates refining skills that shaped my thinking and honed skills that were never fully engaged with by the organisation - as good as it all sounds (and would be) - there is a need for more than change within the senior management's skill set; but it is a start and a such should be applauded.

Then comes something which might be regarded by some as something a little less positive - but I won't let that tarnish this piece so will save it for another post in the 'talent' series of which this is but 'part the first'

and inaction!


Free said...

I left the Church of England last year after becoming disillusioned with the poor management skills and inept senior staff.

Preferment for those who were like them, favours and indulgences for those who toadied and acted as lap dogs.

I am all for making the senior staff more skilled. Sadly we are going to make the church look more like a multinational secular body than a sacred one with this.

UKViewer said...

Leadership in the pastoral context of the church needs to be firm, fair, but discerning, looking below the many levels that decision making follows and to be able to have insight into the complex web of relationships that exist and develop between the human capital of our clergy and laity and to be able to inspire and encourage them toward taking a Vision of the redemptive Christ outside the walls of the church and wider.

It’ not about bums on seats, it’s about the promise of Salvation, a word that is quite often missed in the big ideas bandied about as part of the various mission strategies proposed to halt the perceived decline in Church attendance.

You can’t do mission on the basis of a spreadsheet or from the seat of a bishop, arch deacon or dean. You need to be at the coal face of parish ministry, chaplaincy in all those places that don’t have church and in the context of building relationships for the longer term, not recruiting numbers through the door (although that would be nice), but through the gates of heaven.

Anonymous said...

What makes this most awful is the sanctification of business terms and adoption of business practices for something that needs to be well run but needs calling at the heart of it.

Great blog - thank you

(see you in the pool?)