After reading, “The Importance of Administration for Effective Ministry”, I have observed that church leaders involved in administration as a full-time role should never lose sight of the fact that ultimately the church is the people of God called together to minister the love of the Savior. Ministry is primary. Good administration facilitates ministry, not the other way around. Administration should always ultimately focus on people. Most churches have either volunteers or staff members filling administrative roles. These cover the spectrum from volunteer treasurers or administrative assistants, to full-time Executive Pastors.
While most church business administrators use all these and more, they often have a personal style or skill-set that emphasizes one, to the detriment of an appropriate recipe. The first one being science. As a science, administrative leadership involves procedures and techniques learned by study and experience that involve mathematics, psychology, business disciplines, and other technical skills. Too many pastoral leaders of smaller churches are mystified by the science of other disciplines. Pastors study theology and Greek, not statistics and internal rates of return.
In larger churches, the domain of the “science” needed to administrate the larger ministry cannot rest strictly on volunteer committees. The ministry moves too fast, and is more specialized in approach. Every pastor and church leader must be exposed to the science of church administration, if for no other reason than to know that they need help. Second is art. As an art, administrative leadership involves interpersonal skills that yield relational sensitivity, intuition, and timing.
There are times when administrative leadership comes from an intuitive level. You may find that years of experience begin to translate repetitive actions into a kind of instinct that leads to anticipation, heightened awareness, and an innate responsiveness to early signals. A rookie would think it is an art and it probably is. Beyond the wisdom and artistry of experience, there are times.