oxymoron: production leadership

Production leadership…in some ways, it is an oxymoron.  You know, like jumbo shrimp and the tech person’s favorite passive-aggressive.  Let me explain.

Most people in the world of production, whether it is in the church or not, like to be behind the scenes.  Most of our jobs revolve around not being in the spotlight.  Even the function of our jobs is to be transparent.  Flying under the radar is something we do.  We are successful when nobody notices anything.

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

If you are a part of a larger organization, there comes a time when someone needs to stand up and become a leader of this group.  Leadership requires being out front.  Flying above the radar is necessary.  Learning to communicate with tech people and non-tech people alike is a must.

I was reminded of this concept last night while recording a podcast with the guys from the Tech Arts Network (check out the podcast here.)  We were talking about the idea of leading up, the concept of leading our leaders in what our teams need.

Because I am used to just doing my job without anyone noticing, I realized last night that I withhold the good news and the bad news from what is happening in my ministry from my leaders.  I don’t do this on purpose, it just falls into the “under the radar category”.  So many times I only interact with my leaders when I need something or when they need something.  There are very few instances when we have a conversation about the everyday stuff that is going on in the production ministry.

I think a big part of leading up is to engage with our pastors on a regular basis.  Not necessarily in a meeting or some kind of one on one time, but as we go.  A quick email about a volunteer who is going through a tough time, or when passing in the hall, mentioning that we had a volunteer appreciation night and how well it went.  As Mike Sessler mentioned in the podcast, going to a ministry director’s meeting and not wanting to share the “pedestrian” details of what is happening in production, has got to end.

For the production ministry to thrive, it will require something outside of your comfort zone.  If you are in production in the local church, you are obviously passionate about what you do, otherwise, there are better options for employment elsewhere.  That passion needs to come out in ways that help your leadership understand what is going on in your ministry.

We need to step out from behind our consoles and black shirts and learn how to be an advocate for our team.

God moves in all areas of ministry.  He can move and does move on our teams in unique ways. 

Our leaders want and need to hear about it…often.

Todd Elliott

Todd Elliott

Todd is a writer, speaker, technical artist in the local church and founder of FILO.

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MAY 2-3, 2023