I took a recent poll of youth workers, asking them which they hated more: Micro-Managing Pastors or Hands Off Pastosr. The overwhelming answer was the micro-managing pastor was worse.

I have worked for both types of pastors and, if had to choose, I would choose the micro manager, not because I like being micro managed but because at least the micro-managers showed some semblance of caring about the end result and how it fit with everything else.

One youth worker nailed my experience with working with a hands off pastor when she said,

“The negative about my hands off leader was he wouldn’t stand up for me even though he agreed with me, BUT he always trusted me to handle things. Trusted my judgment more than his own sometimes. Micro managers don’t trust no matter what you do.”

Granted, I’m a self starter and did my job responsibly, with passion and excellence, but there’s also a certain loneliness in it, as if was working by myself rather than on a team.

When I was younger, this youth workers quote rings true.

 “I was looking for guidance and leadership, but also space to spread my wings,”

Most young youth workers need this in order to grow and become.

In my experience, A micro-manager

  • wants to know everything
  • makes suggestions for how it should be done
  • creates accountability for it being done

In this midst of all this, micro is at least a chance for conversation and collaboration.

A hands off pastor

Offers unlimited freedom but with unlimited opportunities to make mistakes as well. When you make a mistake, it’s all you, you have to fix what you broke, with no help from your pastor.

That’s my reasoning behind why I’d choose micro over hands off.

Each style has pros and con but neither is the best way to lead.

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