How Do Pastors Project Transparency?

As a ministerial leader, how transparent are you?
As a ministerial leader, how transparent are you? (Flickr)

It's difficult to define transparency in leadership.

How much do we share with our team? Is it possible to over-share?

Is the standard simply "need to know?" Do we share financial reports as a demonstration of transparency?

Hillary Clinton had a bad week essentially because of a transparency issue. I haven't heard credible claims that she has done anything illegal, but the existence of her second unofficial email account reveals more questions than answers. (Her husband is noted for his refusal to even use email. Members of his staff claim he has only sent two emails in his life).

Get Spirit-filled content delivered right to your inbox! Click here to subscribe to our newsletter.

I wonder how many of us consider that either of the Clintons project transparency in leadership?

How do pastors project transparency? The fishbowl lifestyle seems to imply that pastors live life as an open book. Nothing to hide. What you see is what I am.

But certainly many spiritual leaders are said to be "closed-off, inaccessible, aloof." Perhaps some leaders are intentionally not transparent due to the threat of a judgmental board or congregation. 

It seems to me that a transparent leader is primarily full of integrity.

Followers will allow their leaders to be flawed. But few will follow a leader with low integrity.

Back to Hillary and Bill ... has their leadership been enriched by their personal integrity? I suppose the answer to that question depends upon whether it is asked of a follower or detractor. The fuss about a second email account is that some people simply do not trust Hillary. Email-gate is simply a data point.

So perhaps transparency is as simple as a definition of integrity to "do what you said you would do." Maybe it's not about how much information I convey but rather how well I serve others.  

Servant leaders tend to appear more open and transparent because the leader's focus is on serving others rather than self.

I may not be able to define transparency, but I can feel it.

This article was originally published on March 13, 2015.

Dr. Steve Greene is the publisher and executive vice president of the media group at Charisma Media and executive producer of the Charisma Podcast Network. His book, Love Leads: The Spiritual Connection Between Your Relationships and Productivity, is now available.

Leaders, Dr. Greene wants to help you understand the spiritual connection between relationships and productivity. Read his new blog, here.

Get Spirit-filled content delivered right to your inbox! Click here to subscribe to our newsletter.

Dr. Steve Greene is now sharing stories, teachings, and conversations with guests who lead with love on Love Leads, a new podcast. Listen now.

Dr. Mark Rutland's

National Institute of Christian Leadership (NICL)

The NICL is one of the top leadership training programs in the U.S. taught by Dr. Mark Rutland. If you're the type of leader that likes to have total control over every aspect of your ministry and your future success, the NICL is right for you!

FREE NICL MINI-COURSE - Enroll for 3-hours of training from Dr. Rutland's full leadership course. Experience the NICL and decide if this training is right for you and your team.

Do you feel stuck? Do you feel like you’re not growing? Do you need help from an expert in leadership? There is no other leadership training like the NICL. Gain the leadership skills and confidence you need to lead your church, business or ministry. Get ready to accomplish all of your God-given dreams. CLICK HERE for NICL training dates and details.

The NICL Online is an option for any leader with time or schedule constraints. It's also for leaders who want to expedite their training to receive advanced standing for Master Level credit hours. Work through Dr. Rutland's full training from the comfort of your home or ministry at your pace. Learn more about NICL Online. Learn more about NICL Online.

Charisma Leader — Serving and empowering church leaders