Over the past few years, I have had a chance to be involved with an outstanding ministry called TeenPact Leadership Schools. Going for the first time as a student in 2010, I fell in love with the mission of TeenPact:
Our mission is to train youth to understand the political process, value their liberties, defend the Christian faith, and engage the culture at a time in their lives when, typically, they do not care about such things.
As a student in 2010 I became aware that there were other people in my age group who were interested in having an impact in the world. Over the past four years to today, I have consistently learned more about the ministry and the true message of growth that they offer. TeenPact students come into a week ready to learn about the government and get a 100% hands-on program that teaches state government right at the state capitol. From Committee Meetings to mock legislature, to debates, to elections, to discussions on constitutionality, all the way to Christian worldview training and worshipful evening sessions each person has something to love.
This year at the Michigan TeenPact Class, our class director was Mr Peter Martin, the CEO of TeenPact. He and I got talking about the leadership development model of TeenPact and this is what he had to say.
When someone looks at TeenPact, they primarily see the leadership as the staff team and the Program Director. However, the leadership development model starts not when one is accepted onto a staff position but on Monday afternoon as a student when a group of 8-12 students elect a chairperson on their committee. Those that step up in debate, those that run for student elections, and those that engage others are the first steps in that Leadership Development model.
With this model, those that pour into the ministry are stretched by the opportunities that they create themselves! Leadership development driven by those that choose themselves.
This model extends to the staff teams as well, as a traveling staff member I volunteer my time a few weeks out of the year to teach on the staff team and facilitate that development process during the class. Spiritual mentorship, professional mentorship, and government teaching are my responsibilities during a week of TeenPact.
What makes this Ministry unique is an idea called Replacement Driven Leadership. To be a successful staff member your job is to prepare others to take your job. Your success is dependent on how well you pass on your competency to others. This creates a win/win situation in which those that engage are benefitted.
This concept is one that I have studied before, and read about in the New York Times Best Seller, Launching a Leadership Revolution by Orrin Woodward and Chris Brady. They identify Replacement Driven Leadership as Level 4 or legacy driven leadership.
When one is focused on legacy, everyday actions take on a significance that is not present when there is no lasting effect. TeenPact is directly affected by the effectiveness of the previous staff teams. When someone, like myself, is excited about the ministry, I am driven to my personal best in order that others may excel. I teach to those that will take my position in the next year and those that will be in my position next year rise to the occasion. They win by growing in leadership and spiritual capacity, and I win by seeing a ministry I care about change another life like it did mine.
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