Just finished reading a pretty good church leadership book called, Sticky Teams: Keeping Your Leadership Team and Staff on the Same Page by Larry Osborne. The book is written by a Lead Pastor who has been in church ministry for decades and has seen his church (North Coast Church in northern San Diego County) grow from being quite a small church to becoming a mega church with numerous services every weekend reaching thousands of peopJustle. The book is a very quick read and would be most interesting and helpful to Lead Pastors, Executive Pastors, church planters, and church board members.

This is one of those books that would be incredibly beneficial to Bible College students as they head out into vocational ministry. There is just so much great advice in this book from a seasoned pastor on numerous subjects that most pastors don’t even think about until they are in the trenches trying to figure things out on the fly. Osborne does a great job talking through the complex dynamics between Lead Pastors, the staff, the board, and the congregation.

Some of the subjects and ideas discussed in the book that I found most helpful were:

Chapter 3: ‘Guarding the Gate’ – insisting on scriptural spiritual maturity from both your staff and board has to be a priority and a non-negotiable, no matter how talented or influential the person might be.

Chapter 4: ‘What Game Are We Playing?’ – here he uses a great illustration to describe churches at different seasons of growth. The four sports include: The Track Star, Golfing Buddies, The Basketball Team, and The Football Team. Both staff and board need to be aware of what “game” is being played as it will impact everything from decision making to relationships. This is such a great chapter and a must read for the staff and board of growing churches.

Chapter 7: ‘Clarifying Board and Staff Roles’ – I think this is a subject most churches haven’t worked through in an open dialogue, but is one that just has to happen for the health of a church. Both of these groups are so important to the life of a church community and if they are working hand in hand with the same vision and a clear understanding of ministry roles they can be such a powerful force of unity and strength.

* Chapter 14: ‘Setting Salaries’ – I wouldn’t agree with everything in this chapter, but even still, there is some great stuff to think through and wrestle with when it comes how church resources should be used in hiring staff.

* Chapter 16: ‘When Things Go Wrong’ – this is also a must read for every church. Osborne covers the subjects of: moral failure, financial crisis, and the release of a well loved but ineffective staff member. There is such good wisdom here about navigating in a God and man honoring way through these kinds of difficult issues.

My only criticisms would be that sometimes I found a little unneeded repetition and there were times when Osborne began discussing an issue but wouldn’t go much deeper than the surface. Because you know how much experience he has it just makes you want him to keep talking and digging in. Other than that, Sticky Teams was a really great church leadership book that I would highly recommend to Lead & Executive Pastors, church planters, and church board members.

Overall I would give the book an 8 out of 10.


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