Pat Ennis, the executive director of Sovereign Grace Ministries coined, or at least passed on, a phrase about timeliness:
On time is late.
I have personally benefitted from applying that idea. If I arrive just on time, I might as well be late. For me to really be on time, I should arrive early enough to pray a moment, get acclimated to my new surroundings, pull out my stuff, go to the bathroom, plug in my computer, and do whatever else I must to be fully there and fully operational when the official start time arrives.
At Covenant Life, though, this idea is counter-cultural. We operate in "15-minutes late is on time" mode. Undoubtably, part of the difference between our reality and my preferred maxim is the hyperdrive in which our people live. They pack their schedules. They pack them tight, like a bulging suitcase. And then they naturally arrive late.
Unfortunately, our tech teams have not been immune to the cultural modus operandi. Our members show up late frequently. I'm running out of ideas to encourage them to arrive on time. And I'm really disgusted by the thought of manipulating them by asking them to arrive earlier than they really need to arrive just to get them there late-but-on-time.
So, my question goes out to other church leaders, especially volunteer team leaders. How do you hold your people accountable to timeliness?
What reason do you give for them to be on time? How do you encourage them to be on time? What methods do you use to follow up with them? Is there a point where a lack of timeliness becomes a reason to ask them to not volunteer?
Thanks for your help!
Photo Credit: eshm