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Lead Vertically: Inspire People to Volunteer and Build Great Teams That Last

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Great leaders build up, not down. When leaders, whether in the church or in the marketplace, inspire their teams with a vision of what is possible, passion meets production and truly great things start to happen. As Senior Director of Family Ministries at Lakewood Church in Houston, the largest and fastest-growing church in America, Craig Johnson oversees thousands of staff members, lay leaders and volunteers. From his unique vantage-point comes Lead Vertically, a fresh look at the importance of building teams when the goal is not only success, but fulfillment. Lead Vertically includes tools and exercises that can be adapted by any leader for teams of any size, as well as tips for recruiting, training and strengthening teams. Leaders will learn to inspire even when saying no and to build trust personally, not just professionally. People can live with disappointment but not without hope, and Lead Vertically shows leaders how to motivate teams by consistently and clearly communicati

218 pages, Hardcover

First published April 21, 2010

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About the author

Craig Johnson

5 books1 follower
Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name.

Craig Johnson is the founder of Champions Club, a specially designed developmental area for kids, youth, and adults with special needs with the purpose of meeting their needs spiritually, intellectually, mentally and physically. He is currently the Senior Director Of Ministries, at Lakewood Church, the largest and fastest-growing church in America. He and his wife, Samantha, have three children.

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5 stars
19 (32%)
4 stars
17 (28%)
3 stars
14 (23%)
2 stars
6 (10%)
1 star
3 (5%)
Displaying 1 - 7 of 7 reviews
Profile Image for O. J. Toks.
Author 1 book5 followers
July 20, 2010
This is a great book. A solid book for people who want to effectively lead people the right way. Craig Johnson helped reshape my paradigm regarding how to be a great leader.
Profile Image for Mary.
3 reviews
July 12, 2012
While I am not finished this book, I plan to enjoy the journey. I just took a break from plowing through this book a few minutes ago and participating in it's exercises. Craig Johnson is helping me realize not only how to be an effective leader and lead vertically but how to water the seeds of leadership in others.
Profile Image for Laurie Mrdjan.
5 reviews1 follower
September 12, 2012
I went to a presentation for this book by Craig himself just before it's release and not only is he an inspiration; he is a wonderful writer. I recommend this book to anyone who is in any kind of leadership position. This will teach you how to build people up and help them achieve their best.
Great for use in churches, at work, and even parenting!
4 reviews
Shelved as 'completed-in-2021'
May 25, 2021
Lots of really good perspectives in how to view your volunteers. To become "students of your team". Opened my eyes to being more aware of each individual instead of just the ministry and the ministry needs. Getting to know them personally and knowing what is happening in their lives.
Profile Image for James.
27 reviews1 follower
September 22, 2016
I waffled whether to give this book by Craig Johnson on leadership 2 or 3 stars. In the end, I decided to take his advice and not be a "dream breaker."

The book is easy to read. Johnson does a good job of laying out the book with good principles and illustrations to back up what he is trying to communicate. And, if you're a new leader and haven't read many books on leadership, it will make you feel good. In fact, all of the things that Johnson states are good principles of leadership.

But there is a problem. For Johnson, the glass is overflowing because he used these principles to make the children's ministry at Lakewood Church a success. But the book is full of cliches and statements like these:

"Based on foot traffic, repeat buyers and number of stores, these two chains (In-N-Out and Chick-fil-A) are two of the most successful franchises in the world. What do they have in common? For one thing, they both have hyphens in the middle of their names. Second, they are both started by Christians who established their restaurants using godly principles." (page 192)

In reality, I'm not sure that leadership is as easy as he lays it out to be. For one thing, I don't know if having a hyphen in an organization's name make that organization great (I don't think Lakewood has a hyphen...). Nor is being Christian a criterion for success. Yes, you want to have "positive" thinking, as well as actions. And yes, you want to be a "dream maker," not a "dream breaker." But the reality of leadership is full of hardships that need to be overcome, even with this kind of "positive thinking." Even if one follows these good principles, there will be many who will not achieve the kind of success that Johnson has seen. And it will not be because the principles are wrong, but that it is only a fraction of what is needed in leadership.

In conclusion, if you are a young leader looking for some principles to hang your leadership on, and you want to feel good by reading good stories, then this is a book for you. If you are serious about leading well, then I suggest you supplement this book with some others that will give you the "other side" of leadership. Try Spiritual Leadership (J. Oswald Sanders), Conviction to Lead (Albert Mohler), or even some of the books by John Maxwell. This book would have been much better as a memoir rather than a leadership book (I would have given more stars then).

Disclaimer: This book was provided to me courtesy of Baker Publishing Group through Graf-Martin Communications in exchange for an honest review.
April 5, 2020

I bought it and only put it aside then I went through rough time in my work then I read through again wow there's that huge impact in my life. It stirred the inside of me to look up and see leadership based on Jesus not on human ability. easy to say that but hard to actually do that when you are faced with problems.
Displaying 1 - 7 of 7 reviews

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