In many ways, starting CCM:City was the hardest thing I have ever done. However, there are a few things about the way that Christ Church Manchester is led that made it much easier than planting a church on my own.
- We are multisite –
This meant that I was (and am) well covered. I lead CCM:City but I don’t lead the whole of CCM, that’s Colin Baron’s job. We describe ourselves as having an entrepreneurial multisite model. This means that we are happy to start lots of new things and see how they work.
- We have a low bar on leadership–
Basically, you can have a go and see where you end up! As I have said before, I wasn’t exactly recruited on the strength of a wonderful CV. What I did have was the desire to have a go and see what God would do. CCM, and Colin, made it very easy for me to get involved and start leading. There were no promises and no expectations.
- We have a low bar on success –
Really, we don’t want failure to be the end of the world. It was quickly impressed on me that we can have a go and if it doesn’t work we will just have another go. That attitude did rather take the pressure off! It also meant that we could have a stab at a few other things, and when they didn’t come off we didn’t have to change our philosophy to compensate. We brushed ourselves down and had another go.
- Success doesn’t go to our head –
In the same way that we tried not to be too fazed by failure, we try not to get too caught up in our success. I think this is one of the joys of team and multisite. For one site to succeed it needs to give life to the other sites. You can’t succeed at someone else’s expense. We rejoice together and we mourn together.
- Mistakes are learnt from and not punished –
I realised quickly that grace is a leadership style. I was gracefully given stacks of room to find my feet, make mistakes, say ridiculous things, be arrogant and sometimes do the right thing! The best way to knock a chip off a shoulder is to let someone go into battle. So into battle I wandered…