Shocked and dismayed
What is the critical need your organization seeks to remedy? A few days ago, I met a leader who didn’t hide the fact of why his organization exists:
Every day, in south Florida, six to ten children will be removed from their parents due to abandonment, abuse, and neglect.
Enter, 4KIDS, a remarkable organization, propelled by the vision of a home for every child.
“Whether that is a child removed from their home for the first time, siblings who need to stay together, a young girl facing an unplanned pregnancy who needs a refuge, or a young adult who needs a place to belong, 4KIDS is there with hope and homes,” says their President/CEO Kevin Enders.
“One of the biggest reasons these deserving children and their new, loving families are experiencing life-changing outcomes has to do with our organizational culture.”
The reason I share this. . .
Kevin then gave me what I like to call five commitments that helped him shepherd the radically healthy, flourishing culture at 4KIDS. These five strategic markers are so foundational, so relevant to improving the health of every workplace culture:
- Be transparent. “As the incoming new president, the staff needed to get to know me personally. At breakfasts and lunches with each of our teams, I listened to their pains and passions. By being authentic, we began to build trust with each other. Plus, having them know me and my style was paramount to getting us all on the same page.”
- Be humble. “With almost 30 years in for-profit business, I had never worked in full-time ministry. Thankfully, I was blessed with wise, longtime leaders within 4KIDS who helped me to navigate into my new work and keep my focus on my #1 job, the spiritual state of the flock God had entrusted to me.”
- Be culture focused. “At an internal strategic meeting dedicated to this process, our 10-12 leaders independently identified our strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities for growth, only to be amazed how aligned we were when, individually and collectively, we ranked culture as our #1 strategic action step.”
- Be consistent. “A new monthly directors meeting let our team leaders update the culture in each respective department. Result, leaders and staff alike, gained clarity and confidence: “I know our goals, I know what I’m doing. Culture, strategy, outcomes–I see how it all fits together.”
- Be prayerful. “Every day, we gather as a family to pray for one hour. We pray for children, families, and each other. Our rich Christian focus and fellowship is our strategy and our belief that God will continue to lead and sustain 4KIDS. On Wednesday mornings, we meet for 90 minutes for an all-staff devotion. We worship, share ‘God Stories’ and hear a Biblical message.”
“God was asking me, ‘What are you doing with what I’ve already given you?.'”
The good results . . .
By capitalizing on “Sustainable Strategy,” one the eight drivers of a healthy-to-flourishing workplace culture, it’s a new day at 4KIDS:
- In the course of the first year as president and CEO, Kevin stewarded a previous, robust three-year strategy that, in year two, matured into flourishing workplace culture.
- The organization’s therapeutic approach with families, EPIC, is poised to double its team and expand its resourceful impact on families and children involving more local churches throughout South Florida.
. . . and is the best still to come?
“As leaders, we need to work together to unleash what God has planned for us as one united body. Will we dare to dream and look to the words of Jeremiah 33:3, ‘Call to me and I will answer you, and will show you great and hidden things that you have not known.’”
An EPIC Story
“And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man”(Luke 2:52).
When children are removed from their homes due to abuse or abandonment, they often need help to overcome the trauma from their past. 4KIDS believes every child can find hope and healing through loving and equipped parents and caretakers. That’s why we created the EPIC Therapeutic Approach, a trust-based, trauma-focused model that addresses the Emotional, Physical, Intellectual, and Character-based needs of kids.
Techniques from EPIC are learned in training for parents and caregivers and one-on-one sessions, as well as EPIC summer camp. Kids who were once struggling to cope with the trauma they endured have learned tools to live full and healthy lives with hope for the future.
— Kevin Enders
It’s Your Turn
Which of the five strategic words, above, speaks most importantly to your leadership? Why?
Coming Up Next in on our Continuing Series
“How Sustainable is Your Strategy?”
Allan Kelsey, Executive Strategic Pastor
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