7 Questions with Chad Aukland
Name: Chad Aukland
Current title: Executive Director of Consulting
Current organisation: INJOY Stewardship Solutions
Chad has been with INJOY Stewardship Solutions since 2006, and is responsible for the entire INJOY Stewardship Solutions consulting process - from the initiation of partnership to Followthru. Chad brings over 26 years of vocational ministry experience as an Associate/Executive Pastor. Chad has a heart unmatched for the local pastor, and a desire to see churches of all sizes thrive. Chad lives in northeast Georgia with his wife and their three children.
1. What have you found most challenging as a church leader?
I would say the most challenging aspect of being a church leader is the balance of family and ministry. As someone who is extremely passionate about the church and the pastor, it is easy for me to focus more on these two things rather than on my family, which is where it should all start. Over the years I have become much more intentional about planning specific periods of time to be unplugged from ministry/work and solely plugged into my family. This has paid dividends in me being fresh and even more passionate about the work that God has called me to.
2. How did you become a church leader? Can you please briefly tell the story?
I was called into full-time ministry when I was 18 years old in Deep Creek, FL. I really didn’t grasp the brevity of this at the time, but I knew God wanted me to be moving in that direction. When I was 19, I was hired into my first full-time ministry role at my home church. This was the beginning of the journey that I am still on. I know that God has continued to place the call on my entire families’ lives to be in ministry wherever and whenever He calls us.
We have simply yielded ourselves to Him and where He leads we truly follow. I am so excited about the opportunity I have to come alongside the local church in my current role. This experience has truly allowed me to recapture my passion for the Church.
3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?
Each day is very different for me. Some days I could be home all day, working from my home office. Other days I could be on a plane traveling to some other state for meetings to help move a specific local ministry towards their God given vision. I do make sure that I get about 40 minutes of exercise each day. This is a great opportunity for me to clear my mind and have some thinking time.
4. What one book had the most profound impact on your church leadership? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?
Billy Hornsby’s “Leading From The Second Chair” is the book that has had the most impact on my ministry life and church leadership. I have never been called to be the Lead/Senior Pastor of a church. That being said, I have always been drawn to being the number two guy. Whether an Executive Pastor (which I am at our church right now) or Director of Consulting for INJOY Stewardship Solutions, I get the opportunity to serve at the pleasure of the ‘CEO’ in each organization. I feel like this is the ministry role that God has called me to and I can have just as much impact from my chair as the top guy can have from his. If I make him successful, then I will be successful as well.
5. What's the most recent significant leadership lesson you've learned?
That’s a tough question as there are so many. I would have to say the importance of strong, trusted relationships. As a Pastor, you don’t often have close, trustworthy friends. Oftentimes, you are living in the proverbial ‘fish bowl.’ When you find those few that you can trust, do what you can to hold onto those as best as you can. They will be your lifeline, your accountability, your release valve and bring you a sense of reality and order when everything seems to be essentially spinning out of control.
6. How do you develop a healthy leadership pipeline in a church?
First, you have to have a pipeline. You cannot expect someone to go from not a leader to a leader overnight. Furthermore, the process must be rooted in discipleship. As you are developing someone’s leadership, it must be done from a biblical perspective. The closer they are to God, the better leader they will be.
Second, you have to be true to the pipeline. Once the pipeline is developed, bring everyone up through the pipeline in the same fashion. This provides consistency and accountability. This pipeline may not only qualify someone as a leader at the next level, but it also may disqualify someone from being a leader with more responsibility.
7. If you had to pick just one story, what would be the most meaningful story from your time as a church leader so far?
It is so hard to pick just one. I would have to say the opportunity I had to lead my son to the Lord and his subsequent baptism. To me, there is no greater legacy as a Dad and a church leader than your kids living for Jesus. This would be the high water mark for me thus far.