What are the Trustees' concerns?
Morale at the agency is apparently low. And, this other major "disaster":
"-- that Hammond had stopped meeting with an executive leadership coach trustees had hired to work with him and was seeking a different coach..." (quote from Baptist Press).
What concerns me is not that he didn't use the RIGHT coach, but that this guy needs a coach IN THE FIRST PLACE!
"Executive leadership coach? Our mission dollars are paying for an "executive leadership coach" for the head of a mission agency?
Why do supposedly "God-called" men need to have "coaches" to help them lead and do their jobs? I mean, really. Men that were called to the ministry by God, spent years at seminary in training, whom God called to be pastor or leader somewhere, who now need some "guru" to come in and help them decide how to lead?
Another recent example is a pastor from Houston, Texas, who recently spent three days in Nashville to be "coached" by Maurilio. Maurilio and this pastor openly "Tweeted" during this pastors stay. From the Tweets, we learn that Maurilio is this pastor's "creative coach". On his Tweets, this pastor described Maurilio as "he can really draw it out" - his creativity that is. Both Maurilio and this pastor posted pictures on Twitter during his stay, and they spent Wednesday through Friday designing the pastor's next three sermon series. While there, the preacher experienced a "quality creative breakthrough", and their meetings were described as "creative and strategic exercises".
This pastor and Maurilio "Tweeted" about their fine dining experiences at some nice restaurants around "Nashvegas", even took pictures of their gourmet plates and put them up on the Internet for their Tweeter "followers" to enjoy.
Are not there lay people, or staff members at the church, that can coach the pastor, that can "draw out" his creativity? Must he fly to Nashvegas to work with a marketing consultant? Geoff Hammond - there aren't people in his organization that can help him? He needs an "executive leadership coach"?
I've heard reports that Brunson had a coach of sorts during his time in Dallas - Mike Miller - who was hired to help Brunson manage his time and enhance his leadership skills. Who knows, maybe Maurilio is "coaching" Brunson as well.
This sort of thing - a pastor having to fly to spend 1/2 week with a "creative coach", in order to "draw out" his creativity, to have creative and strategic exercises, and to go to restaurants and just pal around....and then to TWITTER ABOUT THE WHOLE EXPERIENCE...it makes me wonder how much of this is going on with other SBC pastors and leaders who are spending God's money? Is there a market out there for "pastor coaching" like Maurilio does? I thought pastors were "Men of God" that were seminary-trained and that God used to lead the church - but now the trend is that pastors need to spend quality time with a creative coach to figure out what to preach, how to preach, and how to lead?
When I hear of "executive coaches" at the mission board for the president, it makes me glad there is a task force looking at the overall structure of the SBC - but I wonder if these task force members are as disgusted as the lay people are. We hear reports this week that Cooperative Program giving is down 2.65%, or $14.6 million from last year - which in this economy isn't too shabby.
Memo to GCR Task Force: please find and get rid of this wasteful spending, and put accountability measures in place to make sure our mission dollars are not wasted. I think it safe to say: Executive Coaches are not helping Southern Baptists fulfill the Great Commission.
I think it very appropriate to quote Mary Kinney Branson in her book "Spending God's Money":
"The extent of misuse [of money] is directly proportional to the distance between the giver and the spender."
We see it at the national level with our federal government.
And we see it at the national level within the SBC.
And we see it even in our mega churches, where money is spent without the givers having any right to any significant detail whatsoever on how it is spent.