Effective Communication

Kem Meyer on Less Clutter. Less Noise. Part 2

In the second half of this interview, Kem Meyer discusses her book, Less Clutter. Less Noise. and why effective communication is so essential to effective churches and successful leaders. “Treat people as if they’re smart,” says Kem. Sometimes even communication with the best intentions becomes noise…and gets ignored. “As a professional communicator, at the end of …

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Where Good Ideas Come From

I find Steven Johnson interesting. He looks at science, culture, and history from a particular perspective, wanting to figure out how really great ideas develop. (This is not a spiritual or religious perspective.) He’s been talking recently about how the connectedness we have today through new forms of communication is a great opportunity for partial …

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Preaching and the Packers

It was a lot of fun yesterday watching the Green Bay Packers defeat the Chicago Bears and qualify for a trip to the Super Bowl (especially because I was born in Chicago but grew up in Green Bay, just two miles from Lambeau Field.) On a rare occasion in the past I would break into …

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The Innovator

[It has just been announced that Steve Jobs has died. This post was written earlier this year.] It’s sad to hear that the ugly disease of cancer (or its after-effects) has forced Apple CEO Steve Jobs into a medical leave. He’s only 55 years old (I say “only” because that’s how old I am) and …

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Why are we unsatisfied with our communication?

Over the years I’ve talked to many leaders about their experiences in the area of communication. I’ve asked, “What has worked for you?” Or, “What’s your solution to the issue of communication?” More often than not, leaders say that they are unsatisfied with their efforts or their results in communication. They often describe poor communication …

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Great ideas don’t necessarily pop into people’s heads

Steven Berlin Johnson (author of Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation, due out tomorrow) recently gave a talk at TED on the amazing power of networks. His thesis is that most of the great breakthrough ideas in history were not instances of individuals having epiphanies, but of those people being well-connected …

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More Effective Sermon Conclusions

This week offers some practical help on making sermon conclusions more effective. For instance: Use an argument. Anticipate the objections the audience might have and logically refute them. Use a warning. Warn them of the consequences of disobedience. Use indirect conviction. A good example is the story of Nathan and David (2 Samuel 12). …

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The crucible of preaching

A quote from M. Craig Barnes (author of The Pastor as Minor Poet: Texts and Subtexts in the Ministerial Life): “The best preacher is always the local pastor. He or she is the one who is skilled not only in the exegesis of the Bible, but also in the exegesis of the congregation. This is …

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Incremental Preaching

Many pastors want “fast acting” sermons. But what brings lasting transformation is a steady, intentional plan for the pulpit. An article in Leadership Journal online.

Leadership and Emotion

To what degree should leaders either show or overtly use emotion as part of their leadership? This very point is being debated widely (and emotionally!) in the media today over President Obama’s personal response to the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. One side pleads for an emotional front face on the crisis, the …

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Passing the “so-what?” test in preaching

an article by Stuart Briscoe Gerald Griffith, a pastor and Bible teacher in Toronto and my good friend, one day said to me, “Every week God gives me bread for his people.” I looked him straight in the eye and replied, “That’s true, but you spend a lot of time in the kitchen!”

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