Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Book #1 - The Starfish and the Spider

It's time to start posting the books I am reading again. My in-laws gave me a book that has been on my reading list for quite some time now - The Starfish and the Spider: The Unstoppable Power of Leaderless Organizations by Ori Brafman and Rod Beckstrom.
We have been talking a lot about small groups and empowering small group leaders to be the front line facilitators of spiritual growth at Charter Oak Church. This means that authority and responsibility are taken out of the hands of the paid staff and into the called and trained leaders. Reading this book was obviously God's timing because that really is at the heart of this book.
I really appreciated the use of real examples of what it means to be a leaderless organization. This isn't something new. The more diffused the power the more likely and organization is able to survive. The harder an organization tries to preserve it's hierarchy and power, the more likely it is going to fail over the long haul.
If we have given the authority to the small group leaders and they continue to multiply, then if the church burns down or if something happened to me or our staff, the church would continue to be the church because we won't be completely centralized in one location or in one person. I realized we do have some centralization, that is why I really appreciated the chapter on the hybrid organization.
If you are a leader in an organization that you want to see succeed and survive, even thrive beyond you, I would highly recommend reading this book.