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Forget the Highlight Reel

| 2 min read

Written by Matt Steen
May 9, 2019 7:41:00 AM

Leadership isn't always glamorous

Over the last few months I have attended a bunch of conferences. These often feel like family reunions, as I get to catch up with old friends, clients, and hang out with our team. These also can be highly inspirational times, as I get the chance to learn from leaders who are doing amazing things in the churches that they serve.

This morning, as I was getting ready for my day, I listened to the ReWork podcast. ReWork is put out by Basecamp and is unique in that they spend a lot of time talking about the good, the bad, and the ugly of their company. If something blows up on the back-end of their product, they talk about how they messed up and how they should have caught it. This morning's podcast was part of a series that they call Last Week with Jason Fried. Fried is the company's CEO. The idea behind this series is that they talk about some of the day to day details of leading a successful company. This week's topic? Negotiating the company's building lease.

You're probably thinking "all that build-up for a podcast on building leases?" I'm sorry to let you down. Over the course of the podcast, Fried shared his thinking on what to do with his current building: walk away, renegotiate, move to a new place, go office-less for a year, and so on. It was terribly mundane, no where near as sexy as we imagine leading a successful tech company should be, and it was a good reminder.

As leaders, it is easy to get caught up in other people's highlight reels. We go to conferences and hear about the amazing things that other leaders are doing. But they never talk about negotiating building leases, or having a five minute conversation with a staff member who hurt their back over the weekend, or making sure the church management system does what your church needs it to do.

It can be easy to forget, when we are surrounded by cool stories of amazing successes, that those stories only happen because we execute on the mundane. That only when we perform the boring, unglamorous, routine tasks with excellence do we open ourselves up for the chance to do the amazing.


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