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Blog

for the curious about life and leading others

Choose Your Stories Wisely

Jared Kirkwood

Creating culture is tricky business. And it begins with knowing where you are going. 

When you take time to write down a few aspirational goals for your ministry or organization, you are articulating what you want to be known for. For instance, I want my ministry to be known for the way our students grow in their faith well beyond high school, how our volunteers invest in deep mentoring relationships with students, and that we are a fun community that doesn't take itself too seriously. 

While we are all of those in part, there is always room for progress. 

You cannot create culture alone. This is where your team needs guidance, coaching, affirmation, and challenge from you. My encouragement would be to carefully select the right stories to tell that affirm the aspirational goals you have created. 

So if we want to be a culture that is fun, I would affirm a team member for a creative way he or she created a fun environment in HSM. Or, we are going on our winter retreat next weekend and I really want every volunteer to have powerful conversations with students, so I will tell them stories of how volunteers have deeply impacted students even in the short timespan as a weekend retreat.

Tell the stories that affirm that culture you are creating.
Simple stuff.
But we often miss it.