one thing i learned from the global leadership summit

I have the privilege to work closely with some amazing speakers during the Willow Creek Global Leadership Summit.

For those of you who don’t know me, I am an introvert and a type 9 on the Enneagram scale.  These things combined, make it a challenge to work up the extrovert in me to engage with people I don’t know that well.

Usually this extroverted job involves me introducing myself, talking them through the schedule, walking them on stage, pointing out where the cameras are, what kind of podium do they want, doing  a mic check, etc.  Not only am I trying to get useful production information from them, but I tend to think of my job as being a calming influence for the people who will be on our stage.  For some of them, this will be the largest audience that they have ever spoken to, and they can tend to be a little nervous.  For others, it is just nice to have a normal conversation with someone, about nothing in particular.

It seems like after every year I do this, I receive quite a few “thank yous” from the people I have had the chance to work with.  It is always nice to be thanked, especially in as a church technical artist, since we can normally only hear about things when they go wrong.  But I also usually come away from this experience completely energized.  You would think that after a string of 15 hours days I would be wiped out, but I’m not.

So all this set up leads to the thing I learned this year:

do what I do best so that others can concentrate on what they do best.

So much of what we do as technical artists is about setting the stage for others to do something, whether it is play music, singing, acting, or delivering a message.  As my friend Marty O’Connor used to say (and maybe he still says it), we need to “set the table”.  In other words, we get everything ready so they don’t have to worry about any of it.

It is all set up, checked and working when the band walks in.  When someone talks, the mic is on, building trust that the mic will in fact be on each time.  When the pastor calls for a graphic, it is there.  These are all examples of taking care of the things we care about, so that the person using the technology can just focus on what they do best.

Think of the things you stress about for a service.  

Now imagine what your senior pastor is stressing about for a service. 

Do you think they should have any space to add your worries to their brain on game day?  

Take the things you are responsible for and kill it every week.  Set your pastor up to win by giving them a reason not to worry about what you are responsible for, allowing them to focus on what they do best.

  • Todd Schuett

    Great lesson for all of us as employers, employees, and co-workers alike.