Kenny and Heather Haggard

Reflections on 2016 Global Leadership Summit

Reflections on 2016 Global Leadership Summit

Reflections on 2016 Global Leadership Summit

So I might be behind the conversation a little bit for those who have attended the Global Leadership Summit in August earlier this year (2016 for those who read this in 10 years?). I attended it last week in Erseke, Albania. I didn’t know about the summit until coming to Albania even though it is held at Willow Creek Community Church, a megachurch located about 15 minutes from where I grew up.

It is an incredible event and I am thankful for its global scope. I look forward to it every year. It is practical and challenging and I walk away different, full of new ideas and helpful strategies to lead better.

Some of the material is focused on business but most is applicable across several disciplines. I want to share two of the most influential talks from this year’s summit and how they apply to me here in Albania.

First came from a man named Patrick Lencioni. His talk was about being an ideal team player. An ideal team player is humble, hungry and smart (in an emotional, people-focused sense). I reflected that of the three, I was strong in humble and hungry but not always smart for my teammates.

In the rush of getting something done, I have not been smart in how I act towards teammates {insert Heather here}. Patrick also used some simple descriptors for the various combinations of these characteristics. So for example, someone who was only hungry, but not humble or smart, would be the “bulldozer”.


For me, the combination of humble and hungry but lacking “smart” made me the “accidental mess-maker”. I see myself there sometimes being honest. I have to work on being smarter towards my teammates and take care to not put the mission ahead of the people I am working with. It doesn’t count if we don’t make it together.  

It revealed to me that I have accepted cutting off an arm as a necessary sacrifice to get the day’s task done without realizing that that arm might be necessary in the next fight! It revealed that I place too much importance on the less important. God is showing me that I need to care for those I spend the most time with the best. I hope to better in the future, and to any former teammates reading this now… sorry it took so long for me to figure out. 

The second talk was about principles of execution. I have many ideas. A LOT! All the time. But I look back and see that there are times where the idea has seemed good but then doesn’t change what is happening in front of me. When Chris McChesney spoke about principles of execution and the idea that we need to focus on the “wildly important” over the “whirlwind”, it clicked for me. I am spread out in some various fields and sometimes I feel like nothing is moving and the things that I do have going are about to fall apart.

I have taken some great strides in time management, balancing time for work and family etc, but this gave me tools to maximize the time I have whether that is for work or family. What I am wrestling with now is how to apply these goal-driven and data-focused principles to working with people. People are not numbers! I don’t want to chart how many nights Heather and I manage to spend quality time after putting the girls to bed. How do you measure spiritual growth in a congregation?

The presentation convinced me that there many important questions and conversations that I have not been holding with my wife and with my coworkers in the church plants.

We want to see people come to know God. We want to see people grow in their faith. We are leading but our leadership needs to get better. I need to get better. And thanks to the Global Leadership Summit and their partners in Albania, I am.


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