Shadow Of Victory

Thursday, 21 October 2010


The title of this blog may be a little confusing for those who didn't attend the Willow Creek Leaders conference at church so I will aim to explain what it means.

Jack Welch who spoke at one of the sessions talks about a principle he employed called "Differentiation"...In his 40 years with GE he learned over time to employ this process. Its main points ....simplified ....are that in any organisation there will be

20% of the team who will be the top workers...the best..the leaders..
the go-getters...the pace setters..the vision implementers etc....then there is the

70% of people who will follow the leaders...bringing their own skills and giftings without whom much of the organisation wouldn't function well.....then there are the

10% of people who pretty much didn't do anything really apart from have a moan...cause problems...gossip and bad mouth etc.

Jacks experience is of the business world and not necessarily the church but there will be principles that can be identified which can be brought into play with any organisation ...He was talking to Bill Hybels who is a world class church leader and this part of the discussion Bill did say would be controversial in church settings.The thoughts behind this principle is to let the people know which percentage they fall those who were the 20 percenters would be praised..encouraged and given all the resources and back up needed to keep them aiming high....the 70 percenters would also be encouraged to keep going..keep supporting...and initiatives set out to increase their skills with the possibilities of moving upwards...the 10 percenters would be encouraged to leave and go you can see why this can be considered controversial.!!

I had pretty much decided I wasn't going to stay in for this session as it didn't really attract me at all but for some reason I did stay and was so glad I did. You know when you get the "light bulb" moments when listening to someone sharing their thoughts and beliefs....well... I had a major light bulb moment and heard God say to me

"Lean in....Lean in..I am about to open your heart to hear what I have to say through this man "

I pretty much had the revelation in an instant but have since read parts of Jack Welchs book..."Winning" and just felt God confirm much of what was said. For me it has set me free in many ways and some of the ways in which I have struggled this year have been clarified...

Let me see if I can explain...for much of my early Christian life I have been involved in leadership roles and worked in teams and within that I have always thought I was a 20 percenter. In this last season of leadership (2-3 years ) the church structure has changed a fair bit and whilst I thought I was a 20 percenter I always felt as if I didn't quite make seemed as if I was always fighting to get further in...may not make sense I know to anyone reading this but at times I believed I was "inside" but then most of the time I still felt as if I was "outside"..I would have some access to some information or people ... invited to some meetings..involved in some planning etc...but excluded from others...this caused a lot of confusion on my part and I am sure I confused lots of the church staff as I jostled along trying to figure out where and what i was supposed to be. In the end I stopped trying and one thing led to another and I faded out...feeling lost..hurt...confused...and this last 6 months have been a little bit of a desert time for me trying to figure it all out and make sense of what had happened.

During the Jack Welch session...God said to me...

"you were never meant to be a 20 were meant to be 70 percenter and that if I let Him...He would equip me to be an amazing 70 percenter...a great 70 percenter...."

I confess to having a weep at this point as so much fell into place in my spirit...I had been striving all along to be what God hadn't planned for me to be....I could let go this weird feeling of never feeling quite good enough and just be the best 70 percenter...being a fab 70 percenter is way more exciting and enticing and attractive to me than being a poor 20 percenter. I didn't feel as if I was being demoted or made to feel a failure ...God doesn't work like that and this was some kind of divine intervention rather than a human one and in truth I felt as if chains had fallen off my spirit. I said to several people immediately after the session that I felt as if I had had an Epiphany..!!

So...what does this mean for me means that I can use all that God has gifted me with the very best of my abilities ...I can look at what I am good at and do it well...I can love people...encourage them....challenge them...I can carry on sending my notes and cards and being generous with my time and money and energy....I can volunteer to serve as and when I am able ...I can smile...I can care...I can show mercy..grace...I can speak truth...I can gather friends...gather women...share bible and fun times together..

I can follow...the 70 percenters are a crucial and vital part of the church...without a great group of 70 percenters the work of the 20 percenters would go nowhere.!! and therefor I am setting my sights on the 20 percenters and saying...

yep...I am following you...I am a good follower.!! I am a great 70 percenter. of the most controversial asects of this Differentiation Principle that Jack talks about is that he recommends that each group should be told who and what they who are 20 percenters should know this...and the 70 percenters should also know...he feels very strongly this is the route to follow. Whilst not presuming to say whether this would work outside of a commercial organisation I would say that personally....if I had known I wasn't a 20 percenter but was a valuable and much needed 70 percenter I am sure it would have saved me from a time of complete confusion which brought me extremely low and caused me to react in ways that I am sure caused hurt and pain to the people who I related to.


sandra said...

Oh Irene....I'm with you all the way and I thank God for putting you across my path for such a time as this.

Be blessed my 70% er friend and who knows when God will give you another epiphany and change your rating

much love

glynne said...

Thank you irene once again for you 70% I think you are great and I love your thoughts that you share with us all xxxx

Caroline said...

well sorry babe but I don't get it. If that 10% is asked to leave, the 90% becomes 100% so the 70 and 20 don't add up. It's nonsense to pigeon hole yourself (or allow someone to do it to you). You're a 20%, all the way, if you must use the analogy. I think I'll start giving talks on the bollix some of these 'trainers' talk! :) I'll be using you as prime example of who they confuse with their nonsense. But now I'm wondering... who'll shout ME down for spouting garbage?! hmmm, anyway. You just carry on as you always have done, you're great as you are, and if someone happens to think you're a 10%er, kick 'em to the kerb!