Bill Walsh’s Standard of Performance

Bill Walsh was the legendary coach of the San Fransisco 49ers in the 1980s. He took over a team that was previously 1-15 and in three years won a Super Bowl. The backbone of Walsh's success was his "Standard of Performance," his leadership principles. Bill Walsh assembled his leadership principles into 17 bullet points which…

Sticky Leaders

Sticky Leaders is about how to change an existing organization. Most attempts to make changes fail (18). But many books don't talk about failure because it doesn't sell well. Plus, as Nassim Taleb has pointed out, we're all prone to the "survivor bias." We see those who've been successful and try to emulate them, not…

The Secret Sauce of Casting Vision Recap

Recap and application of Church Fuel's master class on vision.  Vision sketches out a potential future: "Can you see what I'm saying?" Vision needs to be both BIG and small. The big side of vision is your purpose for existing as a church. It will be along the lines of the Great Commission or the Great…

So Good They Can’t Ignore You

Cal Newport contends that “following your passion” is bad advice. Why? Because many interesting careers have complicated origin stories (13). It’s not just, “Hey, I loved doing this, and then found the perfect job which matched my love. Often, people stumble into a field. Being passionate about often takes time and mastery  (17). Telling people…

Less Chaos. Less Noise.

Kem Meyer's book Less Chaos. Less Noise. teaches churches to communicate more effectively. Here are some reflections on the book. More choices does not mean more engagement. Response: dial back the volume (42). App: Send less emails, texts, etc. Make more phone calls! User experience is by far the best "advertisement" (52). App: Make things an awesome experience. Build culture of…

Sticky Teams

Larry Osborne wrote Sticky Teams to help pastors navigate the practical realities of leading, not just a spiritual organism, but also an organization. There's not much theology found in the book; it's a practical guide with seasoned wisdom sprinkled throughout. Model Don't Matter "Even the clearest vision, greatest innovations, and most stellar programs won't much of an…

Digital Discipline

How much time do you spend on your phone? The answer may surprise you. From supposed "quick glances" to long hours scrolling through social media, mobile devices continue to grab people's attention. In his new book, Digital Minimalism, Cal Newport seeks to address the problems associated with having a life dominated by digital devices. The Problem:…

Questions on Deep Work

I love the book Deep Work by Cal Newport. It's probably been the most influential book on me in the last four years. You can find the series I did on the book here: one, two, three, four, five. But the book does raise a number of remaining questions that have to be worked through to develop…

Cut It Out…Shallow Work, That Is

If actually doing deep work is meaningful, then we the flipside is true: doing shallow work is not meaningful. So what it to be done? Rule #4 Drain the Shallows If you want to work deeply, then you must drain the shallows. You must attempt to rid your schedule of as much shallow work as possible.…

Be a Quitter

Author Cal Newport gives several "rules" for rebuilding your focus and strengthening your ability to produce high-quality work. First, we must make space for deep work. Second, we can embrace boredom. Next, Newport advocates for people to quite social media. Rule #3: Quit Social Media Internet sabbaticals are overrated. Why? Because such sabbaticals aren’t training your…