Larger Scope, Fewer Words

February 23, 2016 — 6 Comments

“I really appreciate having a clear framework for our digital ministry,” Doni told me over lunch today. “My dad was in the Indonesian military. He trained me well in the need for clear focus. It can be a matter of life and death.”

Doni gives leadership to 14 nations’ digital efforts in southeast Asia. The scope and complexity of his leadership challenges are huge. But he and his growing team are making great progress. This is due in large part to his love for people and his ability to clearly state a few objectives.

Here are two lessons I’ve learned in mobilizing large groups of people:

1. The more clearly we sound the deepest spiritual note, the higher level of personal commitment the right people will choose to offer.

2. Less is more with vision. The number of words, goals, or ideas a group can digest is inversely proportional to the size of the group. If we want to mobilize 10 developers on a project, we may be able to get away with a few pages of ideas. If we want to scale to 10K or 100K people who are actively involved, we may need to be in the range of 3-10 words.

Jesus launched a worldwide movement with a few simple ideas: Love God. Love people. Follow me. Make disciples.

Once people have the big idea clearly in mind, they can run at their own pace.

6 responses to Larger Scope, Fewer Words

  1. 1. Love the length of your own post. Nice.

    2. Love the first point. Something deep in our hearts call us to our finest paths and contributions.

    3. Yes to short vision – with additional gift for people of more words as needed.

  2. Agreed – being crystal clear and avoiding what is truly unnecessary is demanded today with all the ‘noise’ in the world. A concise and clear tone can and will set our vision apart. And I need that myself before I try to give it away.
    However, Ken, in our western European context, clarity seems to demand a context or an environment which helps direct that vision appropriately. In my opinion, there are too few examples of others living out such a vision, and so even a clear vision often seems still insufficient for solid believers to ‘run at their own pace.’
    How would you balance clear vision and appropriate context?

    • Thank you, Matt. Every person lives in a context – a place, a time, a language. Friends I know that live out a clear vision often talk about having a clear purpose, a focus, a call, or a north star to aim for.

  3. Marilia Resende July 14, 2016 at 9:23 pm

    Excellent. Spiritual vision is the key. Holistic development of body, mind and SOUL.

  4. Great insight, Marilia. Thank you.

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