Article On Leadership - Economist on Intel and Andrew Grove - Changing Established Churces to Be Focused Outwardly

This article deals with being a great leader and Andrew Grove's thoughts on how the government not allowing companies to fail is a bad thing in the long run.

Paranoid Survivor: Andrew Grove, the former boss of Intel, believes other fields can learn from the chipmaking industry that he helped bring into being.
"Computer firms come and go all the time, such is the pace of innovation in the industry. Yet for some reason this healthy attitude towards creative destruction is not shared by other industries."

"Every company will face a confluence of internal and external forces, often unanticipated, that will conspire to make an existing business strategy unviable."

"He launched the “Intel Inside” campaign, which marketed microprocessor chips directly to consumers, starting in 1991. This incensed his rivals and his immediate customers, the computer-makers, but the strong demand for Intel’s new Pentium chip showed that the strategy had worked."

"Dr Grove, however, insists that it was his experience at City College, where talent and hard work were rewarded and where students challenged their professors without concern for rank, that impressed upon him the value of meritocracy....The meritocratic culture he created at Intel then helped it attract the best talent in the industry."
This last point stuck with me the most. Churches tend to develop a culture that rewards those who have been there the longest and who give the most money. That would go completely against the approach that Grove took to make Intel successful. A healthy church is one that takes any good idea no matter where it came from and allows gifting to decide who gets to serve rather than seniority or time at the church. This is why church plants grow faster than established churches. An established church will already have all the "prominent" positions filled and will already know who they listen to as their idea people. If you aren't in the circle of the prominent or one of the reputable idea people, you will be ignored. They will gladly plug you into one of their cookie cutter ministries, but you better fit the mold. An open church, which most church plants are naturally, allows those with gifting to serve and implements any new idea that is useful in reaching out. Established churches need to figure out how to open things up and allow God, through the people He has gifted, to lead rather than allow the Old Boys' Club to continue on.

In pointing out that Intel became successful when it started marketing to the end consumer rather than marketing to computer manufacturers who actually made the decision to put the chips in computers, I was struck at the difference between a church that "does church" for those already in the pews compared to a church that is willing to do whatever it takes to share the Gospel to all. The former approach always leads to stagnation and death if not changed. The latter leads to life and vitality. Although you might lose some of the Christians who do not want to reach out along the way, a church that is focused on outreach will always be blessed more than an inwardly-focused church.

There might be problems in the immediate future when an established church changes focus, but change is necessary if we want to see the trend of dying churches stopped and enter into an era of vibrant local churches throughout the communities around us. It's either change or remain stagnant and die. Many are in churches that face this decision, and it is not an easy decision to make. People who have been catered to, have always heard the messages they wanted to hear on their pet doctrines that would not challenge them, and have controlled what is done in the church do not take kindly to a church changing its focus from pleasing the pew sitters to loving the community. The key is letting God control what we do rather than any person in the pew, no matter how much they have paid for that seat. It's His Church; it's His mission; He will provide what we need to fulfill that task if we are open to Him, His changes, and His will.