Just because something is simple does not automatically mean it is also easy. Take marriage for example. Going down to the courthouse to get a marriage license and having the justice of the peace marry you is simple. But marriage is not easy! Buying a piece of Ikea furniture is simple. Assembling said piece of furniture is not easy!
When consulting and coaching on simplified, accountable structure, leaders often think that since it is simplified structure that moving to this type of structure will be easy. It is not! Moving to simplified, accountable structure is changing how decisions are made within an organization that has been in existence for decades. Folks have grown accustomed to how things work (or don’t work) within an organization no matter how dysfunctional the structure is. Any kind of change is difficult. But when you are messing with changes in how decisions are made, people find it even more trying! Changes in how decisions often come with a sense of loss in power, control, status, identity, leverage, voice, and worth.
Next, add in accountability. Most often accountable leadership is a new form of leadership for churches. With simplification of structure comes the requirement of accountable leadership. Without accountable leadership, simplification of structure is not a safe form of structure. Frankly, every church should be practicing accountable leadership at every level regardless of structure! But the shift into accountable leadership is also a difficult change for leaders. Church leaders often find holding one another accountable to be very difficult. Somehow, we have confused being nice and offering grace with not holding one another accountable for the mission of making disciple-making disciples (let alone much else).
However, as difficult as simplified, accountable structure may be, let me offer some hope. Church leaders who fully lean into this model, are thoroughly trained, and have a certified SAS coach walk alongside them, become much healthier, missionally-focused churches. Churches who simplify without accountability usually end up with conflict or mistrust of the structure. While simplified, accountable structure is not easy, it is definitely worth the work of faithful, dedicate leaders willing to invest in learning and leaning into the model for the sake of the mission and its Kingdom impact! For more information on simplified, accountable structure, visit kaykotan.com/sas