ORLANDO – On the final day of the WFX Conference & Expo last week, attendees had the opportunity to select from a series of workshop sessions, as well as a keynote by Catalyst president Tyler Reagin.
Among the more valuable sessions during the conference, was led by Eric Byrd, Minister of Music/Director of Creative Arts at St. John Baptist Church, on “Conflict Resolution,” where he covered a number of situations relating to communication issues. Whether he cautioned about sending emails to cohorts that foster tension or confusion, or steering clear of confronting fellow coworkers who, like pigs, “like it muddy and sloppy.”
Other points covered by Byrd included to avoid making certain things public, those that should remain private. Or an interesting point by Byrd, to not aim to “be a leader to be the most popular at the prom; don’t expect feedback, where they are falling over for what you are doing, because you won’t be in the position long.”
In looking to build up strong relationships with your team members, other lessons to learn would be as the leader, offer reconciliation in situations where there might be the temptation to show that you are “right,” or where one tries to force “your way” onto others.
Aside from the Byrd session, another intriguing workshop was coordinated by Fairborn UMC Associated Pastor and Director of Digital Communications Meghan Howard. The focus of the session was on social media for smaller churches, and the value of spreading the message using it as a tool.
As noted by Howard, “What the printing press did for Martin Luther, Facebook, or Instagram can have the same impact for a church.”
At Fairborn, she said, “Our goal is to use social media to connect people in Fairborn, and then our goal is to connect others, and move them closer to Jesus.”
Following the series of workshops on Thursday, was the final conference keynote featuring Reagin. A few of the areas that he focused on were leadership and leadership.
For example, he asked, “How do we steward our influence? When life flows, influence grows.” What he has seen in his own life, he added, “When I look back in my story, whenever I pour into people, I started with two, then four, then eight. I chose to bring life to those around me.”
Pertaining to leadership, he emphasized that it is not limited to just a select few. “Every one of us has leadership responsibilities. Think of two or three people who have influence over you.” He continued to explain how troubling situations that envelop us relating to leadership often become the ones that are instantly memorable, asking the audience about how well they recall the bad relationships, bad bosses, bad influences in their lives, and how, by contrast, it’s harder to remember those good influences, good bosses and good relationships.
He then talked about a personal work situation where he and his boss weren’t the right fit, to where he ended up moving on from that job. Instead of looking to change how he functions at work for his next boss, he said, “We need to lead from our truest self, but we don’t have to change. You were made uniquely for a unique purpose.”