In Part 2, I began to discuss our organizational strategy of #Project80 along with some of the challenges that made us begin asking ourselves tough questions. We learned that our country was experiencing an opioid epidemic that was killing hundreds of thousands of people and we also learned that we were only able to help a small number of souls in desperate need of our services. The strategy was birthed from a deep level of compassion for those still alive but lost due to this terrible epidemic.
Our research taught us that we needed several services in order for us to help more people. First, we knew that our foundational, faith-based program continued to be the main focus of our ministry efforts and we wanted to continue strengthening it to the glory of God. We learned that we needed to add a medical detox program to help with the biological, or physical needs of our patients. We also learned that we needed to add a clinical counseling program to help with the psychological needs of our patients. Many individuals struggling with substance abuse have dealt with extreme, deep rooted trauma, and in order for us to maximize our ability to deliver quality services we needed to develop this part of our strategy. The next service we needed to develop was an outpatient counseling model that would be able to help folks that remained in the community and would not enter our inpatient programs. The final thing we learned was that mental health concerns were rapidly increasing due to the ever-changing demographic of individuals suffering with substance abuse.
All this led to many challenges I would have to face as a leader. I now knew that we needed to do more but I now needed to learn how to lead at a different level. I was very fortunate to have a few godly men and women that were experienced in ministry expansion and executive leadership in business. With that said, I was busier than ever and in a fast-paced environment of growth and change. And I failed to mention that during this same period of time I decided to start an MBA in Healthcare Management. To say it was stressful would be a radical understatement. I was fully committed to this new strategy along with our board of directors support. I knew that I was about to go in a direction that had never been travelled before. I had seen other leaders that made a decision to do something new and they took on tons of criticism for walking down a new path and I was trying to prepare for it emotionally. However, my time was stretched so thin that I wish I would have re-prioritized my life during this time.
In the next post I will discuss these changes along with the various challenges I went through as a leader. It was during the second half of 2017 that I started to feel the pressure and stress of organizational ministry leadership. I was also faced with the complicated task of recruiting people with the appropriate culture fit, competencies and skill sets to fit on our developing executive leadership team.
Have you been faced with a decision that you knew would bring about criticism but knew it was the right thing to do? I would love to hear that story