I can't remember if I've blogged about this or just thought about this a lot.
I think it was Seth Godin at Catalyst this year who presented a business model that Google uses with its employees that is essentially a 20% model. One day a week, employees are encouraged to stop with the typical day to day operations and dream, think, and create something that could enhance the business. If there is an inefficient area, concentrate on new solutions. If there is an area that has not been tapped into that could revolutionize the business or maximize earnings, dream on that...The only catch is that at the end of 8 hours you have some tangible way to show what you've been working on. Some of Googles best features have been born out of this model.
If you delegate tasks, you create followers and you prevent intensified buy in.
If you delegate authority, you create leaders and you become an entity that people desperately want to be a part of.
So, if you want to get the best out of the people you lead, you have to first find people you trust and then you have to demonstrate in significant ways that you trust them. Let them solve problems. Let them create. Let them dream and run with things.
Generally, the people on the ground, who are in the grind know better than you what is working and whats not. So it is both ignorance and poor leadership that prevent you as a leader from consulting them and empowering them to fix inefficiency.
As this translates to church leadership...The way its always been done will not work as it always has. Allowing (Trusting!) leadership to dream and create is the best way to create buy in around your mission and vision. The more we are stuck in week to week survival mode (Sunday is coming again next week!), the less we are in creative mode.
So if you're a leader, how can you implement a 20% rule for those you lead? If you're being led, how can you fight for your leader's time and space to dream?