Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple, announced today that he would be resigning from his position and turning over his company to COO Tim Cook. Jobs had been suffering from recent health issues and he is quoted as saying, “I have always said if there ever came a day when I could not longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple’s CEO, I would be the first to let you know.” He advised his board by saying, “Execute our succession plan.” (quoted from Mashable.)
This phrase got me seriously thinking about pastors and churches and their “succession plan.” I think most pastors view their role like a judge – lifetime appointment – rather than like a businessman and implement a succession plan.
Do you have a succession plan or do you feel that the success of your ministry or church is solely dependent on you living forever? Or maybe that ever-faithful hope of “Jesus will return before I have to turn over my church to someone else.”
As much as I hope Jesus will return soon…the reality of progression is that you won’t live forever and if the Lord tarry you need a succession plan.
Tim Elmore president of Growing Leaders teaches a Habitude called, “The Joshua Effect.” In a nutshell he explains that if we do not equip and mentor the next generation we are setting them up for failure. In order for your ministry to continue growing – beyond your lifetime – is to have a culture that is constantly mentoring and raising up people to possibly take over one day. Perhaps even take over in your lifetime. Gasp!
What is your plan of succession?