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Searchable Leader Lab Archive

Important Note: As we deepen our commitment to dismantling white supremacy, we must reckon with bias in all areas of congregational life, including leadership development resources. This summer, LeaderLab will undergo a content review with the goal of lowering bias and broadening perspectives on healthy, vital leadership. Ongoing revisions will be an essential part of this work, and we invite your feedback: conglife [at] uua [dot] org

 

  • 3 Parts of Effective Governance

    When you understand the purpose of governance and what it needs to be effective, your work as a board becomes much clearer.
    By Dan Hotchkiss, UU Leadership Institute | 3/16/2017
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  • Moving Towards Family Ministry Webinar

    A conversation among religious educators about what congregations are trying and what's working.
    By Patricia Infante | 11/9/2018
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  • Job Descriptions for Board Officers

    What are typical job descriptions for the officers on a congregational board? Here is summary of typical roles and responsibilties.
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 10/31/2018
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  • Keeping Your Church Building and People Safe

    Where to find information and links to UUA resources from out Safe Congregations team. It includes resources and sample policies to prevent and address violence, abuse, harassment, inappropriate behavior, and other threats to safety.
    By UUA Congregational Life Staff Group | 10/31/2018
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  • Teaching Parents: How to Make RE a Family Practice

    How can Religious Educators help parents be the primary religious educators for their children? This webinar presented practices and tools that parents can use to reinforce meaningful participate in a faith community.
    By Patricia Infante | 10/18/2018
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  • Using Experiential Education in youth ministry

    Experiential Education theory is a powerful tool for youth ministry: for debriefing, planning activities, and pastoral care.
    10/5/2018
    Filed in: Youth Ministry
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  • Balancing Youth and Adult Leadership

    Guidance for balancing youth and adult leadership in UU youth programs with the goal of youth-adult partnership.
    10/5/2018
    Filed in: Youth Ministry
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  • October is Benefits Tune-Up Month!

    Is your congregation an employer? In other words do you pay folks to do work? Be it a minister, religious educator, custodian, musician, administrator or some other position? Are any of those folx participants in any of the UUA plans? Retirement, health insurance, etc?
    By Jan Gartner | 10/4/2018
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  • Stewardship Overview for Congregational Presidents

    A supportive board is essential for a successful stewardship campaign. This overview helps congregational boards understand what is needed.
    By William Clontz, Southern Region of the UUA, Stewardship for Us | 10/4/2018
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  • Stewardship Re-envisioned: Moving Beyond the Pledge Drive

    This recorded workshop explores evolving alternatives and additions to the traditional pledge drive stewardship model, designed to reduce anxiety, energize volunteers, and engage those who are not typical pledgers. Case studies will be used to spark new ideas.
    By Central East Region of the UUA | 10/3/2018
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  • Stewardship for Congregations in Transition

    A workshop to explore ideas and approaches for strengthening stewardship in congregations experiencing ministerial transition. Presented by Rev. Roberta Finkelstein, Andrea Lerner and Barry Finkelstein.
    By Andrea Lerner | 10/3/2018
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  • Innovation and Inspiration for UU Stewardship

    Part of the Wi$dom and Generosity Track at the 2016 General Assembly, this workshop equips lay and ordained leadership for effective stewardship in our congregations. It is a "flash” presentation of the most innovative and successful fundraising ideas.
    By Mary Katherine Morn, Vail Weller, Amy Shaw, Darcy Roake, Eric Kaminetzky, Laura Randall, UUA Stewardship and Development Staff Group | 10/3/2018
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  • How To Be a Great Congregational President

    An opportunity for new presidents to learn the basics, share some resources, and network with those moving into the role.
    By Thomas Jefferson Unitarian Church, Louisville, KY, Ian Evison, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 10/3/2018
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  • Electronic Giving in Congregations

    First Unitarian Society in Minneapolis recently started an electronic giving program and share with us what they are learning. Presented by Allan Callander, Former Finance Director at First Unitarian Society of Minneapolis. Host: Rev. Sharon Dittmar
    By First Unitarian Society of Minneapolis, Minneapolis, MN, Sharon Dittmar, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 10/3/2018
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  • Make Room for All: Accessibility and Inclusion Issues in Congregational Life

    Opening our doors to people of all abilities is the less talked about test of inclusion in our congregations. This webinar discusses “disability etiquette” and explores the many ways in which our congregations can be more accessible and more welcoming to people with a variety of...
    By Mark Bernstein, UU Association of Membership Professionals (UUAMP), MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 10/3/2018
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  • Who should be the Congregation's Executive in Policy Governance?

    Congregational Life Staff are often asked who performs executive functions in UU Congregations under policy governance. Here are some considerations.
    By David Pyle | 9/27/2018
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  • How to Read Congregational Financial Documents

    This video walks you through the basics of reading Congregational financial documents.
    By David Pyle, Beth Casebolt | 9/14/2018
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  • Institutionalizing a Ministry of Generosity - Homework

    Is your congregation seeking to become more intentional about nurturing generosity in every part of congregational life? Use these readings and reflections for a faith formation class or small group reflection.
    By Jan Christian | 8/21/2018
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  • Congregation Participation in Ends Development Process

    For congregations using Carver Policy Governance, it's important to have congregational involvement and engagement with "Ends Statements." Using a "World ​Café" process like this one is a recommended method.
    By UUA Congregational Life Staff Group | 8/19/2018
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  • Help Keep Your Board Out of the Weeds with "Dashboard" Financial Reports

    It's hard for boards to operate with a 30,000 foot view of the congregation's finances when they are given detailed spreadsheets of tracking the minutia of the budget. A much more useful tool is a "dashboard" report.
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 8/16/2018
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  • Crowdfunding UU Dreams Through Chalice Lighters and Faithify

    Presented during General Assembly 2018 as one of the poster sessions. Crowdfunding Programs available in Unitarian Universalism.
    By Andrea Lerner | 6/4/2018
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  • Talking About Money as Pastoral Care

    This was a call-in conversation on May 14, 2018 with Kay Crider, Stewardship Consultant with Stewardship for Us, and Rev. Jan Christian, PWR Congregational Life Staff. Powerpoint Notes (below) Conversation Overview Our wounds are often deep when it comes to money and our sense...
    By Jan Christian, Kay Crider | 5/30/2018
    Filed in: LeaderLab
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  • Engaging Emerging Adult Leaders in Congregations

    Find guiding questions, ideas and best practices for emerging-adult-friendly congregations (ages 18-24).
    By Eric Bliss, Sarah Gibb Millspaugh, Annie Gonzalez Milliken | 5/16/2018
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  • GA Presentation on Skills to Grow other Leaders

    Workshops and presentations at General Assembly (GA), the annual meeting of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA), have been provided by a variety of Unitarian Universalist (UU) organizations and UUA staff groups over the course of several decades. Not all presentations...
    5/2/2018
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  • Congregational Governance

    Leaders in all sizes of congregation struggle with how to best govern their congregation’s affairs in ways that are effective, efficient, and faithful to our liberal religious tradition. We have spent a lot of time studying congregational governance and working with...
    4/25/2018
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  • Assessment Tools for Lay Ministry

    Congregations become "smarter" as systems as they develop feedback loops that enable the system to learn from its past successes and challenges. Here is a tool that you can use to improve your ministry as well as the experience of your volunteers.
    By UUA Congregational Life Staff Group | 4/20/2018
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  • Inform and Equip Your Leaders

    Our living tradition calls us to be lifelong learners, and this is especially true for our leaders. There are many skills and sensibilities that today's leaders need to help our congregations be ready for the 21st century. The UUA has many training resources to assist you!
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 4/20/2018
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  • Inviting Potential Leaders to Discern Their Gifts

    Anxiety about lack of volunteers and leaders can often lead to treating them as human capital, objects to be managed. Ironically, this anxiety-fueled approach tend to produce disappointing results. Instead, creating a program based on an I-Thou relationship of mutuality,...
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 4/20/2018
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  • Identifying Potential Leaders for Your Congregation

    Your Leadership Development Team should have several practices and strategies that enable them to identify potential leaders, especially from groups that may be at the margins (young adults, people of color). Places to Look For Potential Leaders Attend newcomer classes Talk to...
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 4/20/2018
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  • Top Ten People Who Should NOT Be On Your Board

    A humorous take on what qualities make a good leader by showing their polar opposites.
    By Suzanne Meyer, Chip Roush | 4/20/2018
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  • Train Your Leadership Development Team

    Learn the kinds of leadership best practices that you want to instill in the rest of the congregation. Learn about the difference between Leadership and Management (we need both), how Leadership Development is an important part of Faith Formation, and how thinking in terms of...
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 4/20/2018
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  • Introduction to Leadership Development Teams

    Healthy, wise leadership is essential to the growth and vitality of our congregations, yet leadership development can easily become an afterthought. Here is a brief overview of where we come from and where we are going. Nominating Committees After being elected at an annual...
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 4/20/2018
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  • Flexible/Agile Leadership

    Leaders understand that processes, tasks and outcomes will not necessarily be the same next week as they were, and they remain agile in approaching situations and answers to questions and issues that arise in their work with congregations; they know that they have to be...
    By Nancy Combs-Morgan, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Generous Leadership

    Leaders are not only financially generous (although they are that indeed!) but they have and encourage a generous spirit and appreciation of the world; they are quick to inspire others, to give of themselves as well as their time, talent and treasure, and are working to find...
    By Dori Davenport Thexton, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Leadership by Learning (Not Expertise)

    Leaders understand that it’s not just about skills, but it’s about being able to learn (often together) what’s necessary in congregational life; they understand the difference between technical and adaptive challenges, and find themselves at ease in the discomfort of adaptive...
    By Ian Evison, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Leadership as Companioning

    Leaders know that so much of congregational life is about being present to and with one another; they don’t have all the answers, but they know how to be with others through the journey of their lives, and the journey of shared congregational life.
    By Ian Evison, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Collaborating Leadership

    Leaders know how to work and play well with others; they understand it’s not about who is right, but how people can work together to ensure the best possible outcome in both task completion and relationship building/sustaining.
    By Nancy Combs-Morgan, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Connecting Leadership

    Leaders don’t need to be the hub through which everything flows, and they know how to help people come together for specific (and general) purposes; they can connect people to ideas, to each other, and to a greater whole.
    By Phillip Lund, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Networked Leadership

    Leaders are networked in a couple of ways — first, they are aware of how community can be created, sustained, and nurtured through the use of technology; they realize that today on-line connection serves to deepen what a congregation can offer; second, they are not afraid of...
    By Nancy Combs-Morgan, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Radically Welcoming Leadership

    Leaders understand that what they might want may not be what others want, and they are open to learning and understanding how the world is different for other people; they understand, too, that those who have been historically marginalized have places in our congregations, and...
    By Lisa Presley, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Self-Differientiated Leadership

    Self-differentiated Leaders know who they are well enough that they also know where they stand, and what they will and will not do; they understand the necessity of boundaries, and work within the congregation to ensure that healthy boundaries are in place and are supported;...
    By Nancy Heege, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Self-Knowing Leadership

    Leaders know where their buttons are, and know how to manage their own anxiety; they recognize that anxiety serves little purpose in moving a congregation forward, and instead can lessen that anxiety and help the congregation focus on the issues involved, rather than the anxiety...
    By Lisa Presley, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Emotionally Intelligent Leadership

    Leaders know how to read people emotionally, and how to help people feel safe enough to not be driven unconsciously by emotions. Leaders help people understand how to appropriately express emotions and to use them as forces to move the congregation forward, rather than trapping...
    By Dori Davenport Thexton, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Culturally Competent Leadership

    Leaders are aware, or becoming aware, that much in their world is based on cultural assumptions of the dominant groups, rather than simply “the way things are;” they understand that congregations must work to determine how they will be—that commonality in values is either...
    By Lisa Presley, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Spiritually Grounded Leadership

    Leaders understand what they believe or don’t believe and are aware of their need for connection to something larger than themselves; they are aware that they need to connect with a deeper core that gives them balance, intuition, and commitment.
    By Phillip Lund, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Mission-Driven Leadership

    Leaders know why they are active, and how they are seeking to make a difference in the world; they understand that congregational life is not about making people “happy,” but by knowing how the congregation is called to serve their community, and are then faithful to that calling
    By Ian Evison, MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Leadership for the Future: A New Leadership Development Paradigm

    The MidAmerica program staff have been discussing the changing state of leadership, congregational life, and our world. We’ve realized that as we move further into the 21st century, our work has to shift. No longer can we simply teach particular skills based on the tools we know...
    By MidAmerica Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Governance in Small Congregations

    Small congregations need a governance system that is "right sized" for the unique needs and challenges generated by their size.
    By Renee Ruchotzke | 4/19/2018
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  • Embodying UU DNA for Leadership Development

    As Unitarian Universalist leaders, we need to understand the history and traditions of the movement as well as its core values and theology. The UU principles are just the tip of the iceberg of what it means to be UU.
    By Renee Ruchotzke, Central East Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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  • Spiritual Grounding for Leadership Developement

    As religious leaders, it's important to have a "center" and a regular spiritual practice that helps us maintain that center. This not only avoids burnout, it also helps keep us focused on mission .
    By Renee Ruchotzke, Central East Region of the UUA | 4/19/2018
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For more information contact conglife@uua.org.