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The Four Disciplines of Execution Simply Understood for Ministry Leaders: Part 3 of 3

Thanks for joining us for our last blog in this 2 part series on the 4 Disciplines of Execution. Be sure to check out part one, and part two before moving on to our final blog!

I’m a mom of three and often times the kids, my husband, and I, and several other families in the neighborhood would often go out to park across the street and play kickball. Because we would have a range of different skill levels of experience on the field, from 6-7-year-olds and all the way up to full-grown adults like my husband, I would be that mom that would say “Hey let's just play for fun and not keep score.” Well, none of the boys on the field liked that idea, especially not my husband! He would say, “You play differently when you are keeping score.” The truth of the matter, and don’t tell him I said this, is he was right. Engagement drives results.


Make sure that everyone on your ministry team knows the score at all times so that they can tell whether they are winning. Otherwise, they won’t understand what they have to do to win the game.

A compelling scoreboard tells the team where they are and where they should be. That’s why a great team can’t function without a scoreboard that compels action. When team members themselves are keeping score, they truly understand the connection between their performance

and reaching their goal, and this changes the level at which they play.

There are four questions you can ask when determining whether a scoreboard is likely to be compelling to the players:

• Is it simple? The team only needs to know the information that is related to understanding the score. Don’t make it complicated!

• Is it Visible? Visibility drives accountability. When you and others can easily see the score, you are motivated to take actions that directly impact the score.

• Does it show LEAD and LAG measures? It should show both so that the team knows what they can affect and what results they are trying to reach.

• Can I tell at a glance if I’m winning? It has to tell you immediately if you are winning or losing.

If the team can’t quickly determine if they are winning or losing by looking at the scoreboard,

then it’s not a game, it’s just data. You should be able to know if you’re winning or losing within the first five seconds of looking.

Nothing affects morale and engagement more powerfully than when a person feels he or she is winning. In many cases, winning is a more powerful driver of engagement than money, benefits packages, working conditions, or even whether you like your boss.

Coming down the home stretch, let's take a look at our final discipline.


The fourth discipline is to create a cadence of accountability. This is where execution actually happens. Accountability means making personal commitments to the entire team to move the needle so that it impacts moving the scores forward.

Discipline 4 brings the team members all together for a weekly or sometimes even daily brief WIG session. WIG sessions should be about 20-30 minutes in length, held on the same day, same time every week for consistency. These sessions take priority over every other whirlwind that might pop up. You never discuss anything related to the whirlwind, no matter how urgent, in these meetings. They are specifically for WIG and actions and results that will directly affect the scoreboard. This high level of focus makes these WIG sessions fast and extremely effective.

The WIG agenda should remain pretty consistent with very little change and have these three parts at each session:

1. Account. Report on commitments.

2. Review the scoreboard. Learn from successes and failures.

3. Plan. Clear the path and make new commitments.

In a WIG Session, you and every member of your ministry team are accountable for moving the needle on the scoreboard. You accomplish this by committing each week during the WIG

Session to one or two specific actions that will directly affect your LEAD measures and then report on them the following week with your results.

These weekly commitments are often not urgent or necessarily even new. They are often things the team should be doing naturally. But without the rhythm of accountability, there will always be things the team members know they should do but don’t actually do with real consistency. The level of importance you place on the WIG Session will directly determine the results your team produces. These sessions should move at a fast pace. If people are running into obstacles with keeping their commitment other team members can commit to clear the path for each other.

As long as each commitment meets two standards:

• The commitment must represent a specific deliverable.

• The commitment must influence the LEAD measure.

The accountability created in a WIG Session is not organizational, it’s personal. Instead of accountability to a broad outcome that you cannot influence, it’s accountability to a weekly commitment that you yourself made and is within your power to keep. We would love to walk alongside you and your leadership team in developing these skills. Our next year-long Accelerator starts in August. We would love to have your church’s leadership team join us!

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1 Comment

As we know what gets measured gets done. Keep score using a balanced scorecard helps keep everything perspective.

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