This week's installment of “What's on Your Mind?” is with Warren Bird. Many of you are familiar with Warren as the Director of Research and Intellectual Capital at Leadership Network. However, he is also the author of more than 20 books and the recepient of the Gold Medallion Award (the top honor given by the international trade association for Christian publishers). Please join me this week as I ask my friend and collegue, Warren Bird, “What's on your mind?”
1. What big issues or concepts are you currently thinking about or working on?
Looking into internships and residencies in growing churches. Finding it all over. Trying to learn the patterns.
Also studying succession in high-visibility larger churches. Among today’s 1,600 megachurches, 82% crossed the 2,000 attendance level under the leadership of their present senior pastor, so passing the baton will be something new, at least at that level, for many churches.
2. What book are you reading right now and what are you learning from it?
Just finished Dan Reiland’s Amplified Leadership, which I just blogged about. Today reading Lyle Schaller’s 44 Ways to Expand the Teaching Ministry of Your Church. Good quote: “teaching is the second best way, after preaching, to attract new members.” Another: “Expanding the teaching ministry is . . . often the easiest, least divisive, and least costly way to increase the range of choices offered to people who come from several generations and who represent a broad range of values, needs, and desires.”.
3. Other than the Bible, what book has been the most foundational for your ministry?
Carl George with Warren Bird, Prepare Your Church for the Future, Revell, 1991. This was where I learned the apprentice idea, how it works practically in a church, and most important, why it’s so essential for leadership development.
4. Where do you go to explore new ideas? What kind of environments inspire you?
I’m refreshed by looking out airplane windows, seeing beauty in nature, and being in places that ooze creativity. However, when wanting to explore a new idea, I need a place of focus that’s free from distraction. So typically it’s a quiet place that I know and where I’m comfortable.
5. Just for fun: what’s your favorite coffeehouse beverage?
The last cup of coffee I drank was in 1978 while driving all night and needing to stay awake. It didn’t do much to help me stay awake, so I guess it was bad coffee.