“Sustaining Leadership Practices for Church Growth in Cambodia” / Part 3  /

II.    A study of church leadership and management issues

A review of current church leadership and management is still one of the main issues in Cambodia church today, for leadership and management play an important role in the sustainable of church growth. A study of church leadership and management issues hopefully provide insight, and ideas to deal with and as well as to shed light on some of these issues. In this chapter one, the project will be reviewed the most common framing of leadership and management issues which are faced by Cambodian church nowadays. Churchgoers continue to decrease in Cambodia. Yet pastors and church leaders are even to accept this decrease, and at the same time, they also agree that it is mainly related to the field of leadership and management. It made some churches are even dying and closed its doors. Therefore, a study of leaders are lacking leadership and management skills, jealousy and conflict in leadership, the integrity and dignity of leadership, leadership ethics and issues in using inappropriate power and privilege of leadership will primarily discuss in this chapter one, for they are the mega-issue which are relevance to church growth.   

2.                2.    Definitions of leadership and management

Are there any differences between leadership and management? In order to understand the definition fully, both words will be defined separately in this thesis, for leadership and management are not the same terms of offering its definition. What is the term “leadership”? People talk about leadership every day, in a company, institute, organization, school, and church. Different people offered different definitions of leadership, for they are based on their time of events, places, tasks, roles and situations. Lovett H. Weems, Jr. says that “Harris W. Lee examined leadership studies over the past fifty years and learned that there are at least 350 definitions of leadership. His study led him to affirm James MacGregor Burn’s conclusion that leadership is one of the most observed and least understood phenomena on earth”[1]. It reminds us that leadership is composed of many interconnected parts of the social process, rooted in the ethics, integrity, values, skills, powers, knowledge, and ways of thinking of both leaders and followers[2]. It seems that leadership is about the ongoing process of establishing and sustaining a relationship between those who aspire to lead and those willing to follow[3]. Somehow, the definitions below will help us to understand better about leadership and management in their different functions.

2.1     3.   The term of leadership:

As mentions above that, there are many ways to define the term ‘leadership’. According to Warren Bennis (2002) reviews leadership as, “the energetic process of getting other people fully and willingly committed to a course of action, to meet commonly agreed objectives”[4] He also presents that, “leadership should be about to understanding people and communicating with potential followers as well as having a unique vision, making strategic choices, and designing and enabling an organization to get the job done”[5]. However, John Gardner (1990) sees leadership is only one of many roles fulfilled by members of groups, and that the function of the leader is to perform those tasks that are essential for the accomplishment of the group’s goals[6]. Howard Gardner (1995) argues that leader as the one who could draw and get other persons to perform what they do not want to perform and like it[7]. Similarly, Eileen Ford (1993) has emphasized leadership as the accountable, potentiality, and capacity to persuade persons that they want to do what you want them to do as if they had thought of it themselves[8]. To draw a conclusion here, I think that leadership is mostly about the process, context, influence, and goal attainment. In order to link to my paper, a question is needed to raise here, is leadership can be a matter? I think that leadership that does so because it can transform a difference, its functions and goals, and again this difference will be happened in the lives of followers, in a group, or church.

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