Chris Yaw Interviews Stan Ott: Beating the Pressure of Present Demands


Stan Ott, seasoned consultant with the Vital Practices Institute, says helping leaders get past the tyranny of the immediate is the most common challenge he sees in today's churches.

Ott and his team pull together groups of churches and walk with their leaders for three year stretches. During that time he says most leaders can do better managing time and giving work away.

In this interview, Stan shares more of what he's learned -and tells us why he's optimistic about the Church. Enjoy the inspiration from this seasoned professional.


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Stan Ott's 'equipping ministry' is all about helping establish congregations 'bless (the people there) and add (others).' Here are my notes from the interview:

The Real Vision of the Church

Stan's observation is that 'the real vision of the church' is rarely the mission statement, but is usually, 'repeating last years programs all over again this year.' How true to your church's vision is your congregation?

Give Ministry Away

Stan says it may be the biggest challenge for today's church leaders: to effectively delegate to others. How effective are you?

There's  a Difference Between Friendliness and Hospitality

Stan says, sure, all churches are friendly - but aren't most people? What's supposed to set us apart, is our ability to put our own needs aside for those of others and show hospitality. How well does your church do this?

About Stan Ott

The Rev. Dr. E. Stanley Ott holds degrees from Georgia Tech, Purdue University, and McCormick Theological Seminary.  Along with running Vital Practices Institute, he is a part-time teaching pastor at Vienna Presbyterian Church in Virginia. Stan has written numerous books including; Twelve Dynamic Shifts for Transforming Your Church (Eerdmans), Transform Your Church with Ministry Teams (Eerdmans), Vision for a Vital Church (Vital Faith Resources), and The Joy of Discipling: Friend with Friend and Heart with Heart (Zondervan). Vital Practices Institute trains pastors and church leaders all over the country, if you would like to contact Stan you can email him at:

Books Stan Recommends

Deep Change - Robert Quinn

The Fine Art of Small Talk - Deborah Quinn

The Practice of Adaptive Leadership - Ron Heifetz

Article: Harvard Business Review - Who's Got the Monkey? 

Taken with permission from