One of the most common words that came up repeatedly during the workshop from each of the panelists was the element of relationships.
Andres Caamano · October 10, 2017
With a packed conference room for the annual Tech Leaders Retreat, with more than 200 attendees taking in the four-and-a-half hour session, four tech team leaders discussed a range of topics, from avoiding burnout, how to be a good communicator, and the matter of building trust among members of your staff.
Two in the group, Justin Firesheets, Production Manager for Church of the Highlands and David Leuschner, formerly of Gateway Church and currently the Executive Director for Digital Great Commission Ministries, have previously been part of the Tech Leaders panel at WFX. This year, they were joined by Andrew Stone, Production Manager and Audio Director for Church on the Move and Jeff Sandstrom, a music producer and engineer, who has partnered with North Point Ministries.
During the preconference workshop at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Conference Center in Dallas for the WFX Conference & Expo, the group mixed things up, between discussing things as a full panel, or where each panelist held the floor for about 20 minutes or longer discussing a series of subjects, to also having a handful of breakout sessions, including asking attendees to discuss current challenges facing their tech teams and possible solutions.
One of the most common words that came up repeatedly from each of the panelists was the element of relationships.
To Firesheets, he asked the attendees the question, “How do I manage all those relationships (within the tech team or those you work with), to keep them healthy, honoring and respectful? When confronted with bitterness, anger and division, it can poison everything we do, he noted, likely derailing one from being in the correct frame of mind, to where “a little bit of reflection time is needed, to get a relationship healthy again.”
In that realm, Leuschner discussed having worked at a church 15 years ago, with “a 5,000-seat auditorium, and it was me (running the tech side largely on his own). The situation had deteriorated to a point where he noted having to “define what an emergency was, and everything was. And that was not healthy.” In attempting to improve the situation, though, he explained having a series of conversations, to where “I was attacking … it did not go very well.”
From that, Stone talked about the need to be “rocking with a servant’s heart,” and how after taking a position at Church on the Move in 2005, he had a rather awkward meeting a year in with the then-tech team leader. “He was visibly nervous … he was petrified,” noted Stone.