What happens when a bold idea is actually a huge goal that needs many people working together to accomplish it? How can you get others to latch onto the goal so that it becomes theirs as well? Dan Brokke knew that spreading the Gospel to 2,000 barely-reached people groups was not a mission he could do on his own. Still, his vision has brought together all the people in an organization.
Who is Dan Brokke? After a career in Christian publishing and business consulting, Dan has pursued his interest in missions by serving as the president and CEO of Bethany International. His knowledge of business and of the organization itself has brought unity and clarity to their mission. He and his wife have four grown kids and enjoy the addition of new grandchildren to the family.
Moving a group of people toward a goal requires clear leadership. At Bethany International, Dan has been communicating the specific goal of reaching the ½% of the world’s people groups who have no familiarity with Christianity. By defining and bringing clarity to the mission, Dan turned the goal of reaching certain groups in the 10/40 window into a tangible idea. How? The goal is shared with stories and experiences that others can embrace and make their own. Within six years, the organization has brought on new staff members and drawn in 70% more students to its university in order to reach their precise goal.
“At the end of the day, you have to lay aside some comforts to do this. You’ve got to be willing to say that the American dream isn’t the most important thing in my life. I’m willing to lay some things down. So that’s an attitude; that’s a mindset.” —Dan
“If you throw a goal out there that is too big and people don’t have any sense of being able to contribute to that, it sounds good, but it doesn’t mean anything to them.” —Dan
“If your leadership really comes together and says this is of God, this is important, and this is right for us to pursue, we need to do this, you get a clarity of voice coming from every area of leadership as it touches the organization. […] If you don’t have that agreement at the leadership level, it is never going to make it down into the organization and the team as a whole.” —Dan
“You don’t have to be a missionary to be pleasing to God. In fact, you just have to be you and exercise the gifts God has given you.” —Leary
- Remember that bold ideas exist around the edges and not in the stable center. Outliers are opportunities.
- Complexity kills clarity. Simplify your idea to a specific niche without gray areas.
- Evaluate: Do you yourself have a strong passion for the thing you’re pursuing? Is the thing you’re giving most of your time to something you’re truly committed to?
- Understand the vision to get others to unite around it. If you are the leader, own the vision and pass on the vision until it becomes part of the organizational culture and a measure of accountability.
- Buy-in is measured by dive-in—how well your team gets involved in your idea is shown by how much they give up to be part of the goal.