Thursday, September 08, 2005 | |

The Leadership Blog Interview: Dan Reiland

Dan Reiland

Bio: Dan Reiland serves as Executive Pastor at Crossroads Community Church in Lawrenceville, Georgia. He previously partnered with John Maxwell for 20 years, first as Executive Pastor at Skyline Wesleyan Church in San Diego, then as Vice President of Leadership and Church Development at INJOY. His semi-monthly e-newsletter, The Pastor’s Coach is distributed to over 60,000 subscribers.

Church: Crossroads Community Church

The Leadership Blog Interview
1. Dan, What gives you the greatest joy in being a leader?
: "Coaching and seeing people find their place in the kingdom. I don't mean a dutiful response, but a Kingdom "sweet spot" like Buechner says: "The place God calls you to, is the place where your deep gladness and the world's deep hunger meet." Frederick Buechner (Daily Meditations, Harper and Row, 1992, p. 185)"

2. What is your biggest pet peeve as a leader?
Dan: "Leaders with pet peeves. OK, I'm not serious about that, so, here's mine. People taking themselves too seriously and focusing on little things that don't matter. Life is too short to fuss about meaningless things. At my stage in life I have discovered that there are few real problems that can't be solved with people who want to solve them and a tall cup of Starbucks Columbian."

3. Who made the biggest influence in your life as a leader?
Dan: "Clearly John Maxwell. I am so very fortunate to have been personally mentored by John for 20 years. I often think I should be a better leader than I am with that kind of training, so don't hold my shortcomings against John!"

4. What books have changed your life?
Dan: "That's tough for me to answer. There are so many and I continue to read, learn and see my life shaped and re-shaped by the thoughts and experiences of others. So, let me offer one that had high influence. Richard Foster's Celebration of Discipline. It's not an exciting book, but I couldn't put it down. That was 24 years ago, and I have been teaching others from that book ever since."

5. What is your biggest challenge as a leader?
Dan: "Leveraging my choices for greatest impact. I'm at a stage in leadership and ministry where working harder and doing more are not the answer. Working smart and making wise and relevant Kingdom choices as I stare down my "final" run. Hey, I'm 50. When you are aware of what is your last 15 plus years, decisions are more weighty. I feel young, and think young, but my teenagers remind me that I'm not as wise and relevant as I want to believe I am. They, along with my younger staff keep me on my toes."

6. What goals do you have as a leader?
Dan: "Investing in the next generation of leaders is one of my great and consistent themes right now. I still have much to accomplish personally, especially through writing, but I possess an inner stir to unleash young leaders and get them running well and in the right direction."

7. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Dan: "It is highly likely that I will still be the Executive Pastor right here at Crossroads. I'm having the time of my life and it's not yet time to find my replacement. Check with me in about 9 years and I'll give you a better answer."

Dan, Thanks for giving some insight into the life of a great leader! I really enjoy your "Pastor's Coach" e-newsletter.