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7 Questions with Chika Ossai-Ugbah
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7 Questions with Chika Ossai-Ugbah
Name: Chika Ossai-Ugbah
Current title: Lead Pastor
Current organisation: Covenant Life Baptist Church, Benin City, Nigeria
Chikaogu, fondly called Pastor Chika holds a PhD in Adaptive Theology with specialization in New Testament exegesis. He is a United Nations-POLAC Ambassador of peace.
He has been in ministry for 25 years and actively engaged as a teacher of the word.
He is married to Ngozi, a family and relationship minister/coach.
1. What have you found most challenging as a church leader?
Trans-generational relevance and managing people
2. How did you become a church leader? Can you please briefly tell the story?
I had the call of God in March 1987 to go into the ministry. Before then I had been leader in our church prayer band, children ministry and also functioned as a youth pastor.
Following my graduation from the seminary and subsequent call to pastor a church, I came into mainstream church leadership. I have been in this for 25 years now.
3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?
This is how my day basically looks like
3.00am - 5.00am: personal prayer time
5.00-5.30am: family devotion
5.30-6.00am: Freshening up
6.00-6.45am: Personal reflection time in church
6.45am-8.00am: Early Satisfaction Prayer Meeting
9.00am- 2.00pm: office work in prayer, counseling and administrative matters
3.00-4.00: Meditation & study
4.00-5.00: Personal time
5.00 - 6.30pm: church programs
7.00-8.00pm: family time
However, My Monday’s are days off each week from work. My Saturday’s are also designated for family recreation.
4. What's one book apart from the Bible that has had a profound impact on your leadership so far? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?
Leadership on the Line: Staying Alive Through Dangers of Leading by Ronald A. Heifetz and Marty Linsky.
I was a student for the Harvard Kennedy School executive education program on Leadership in the 21st century: chaos. Marty Linsky was the facilitator.
I came to see how my actions had sabotaged my leadership each day I read the book which was the main text for our course. I had failed to adapt myself to different situations to lead the people who were confronting me in leadership. I saw that adaptation is the skill of all species that have survived on earth over time. Leadership contexts will keep changing, it takes an adaptive leader to lead effectively.
5. What's the most recent significant leadership lesson you've learned?
Unless you get your emotions right as a leader, you will keep experiencing leadership crisis. Our leadership is influenced by the state of our emotions. Emotions are the driver of whatever we do. It can make or mar a leader as some of the best leaders have been captives of their emotions.
6. How do you develop a healthy leadership pipeline in a church?
Through mentoring- every leader should be able to reproduce their kind. It’s the law of Genesis 1:11. Mentoring affords a church leader a cost effective and affordable way to raise healthy leaders over a long period of time.
7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a church leader so far?
I came out of church one Sunday morning and met my wife outside weeping. She refused to tell me what was wrong with her even when I asked. But her prayer partner told me exactly what happened. One of my female pastors had insulted her and said unprintable things about us. I was hurt and really grieved. I went into my office, took my car key to drive to the house of that female pastor. However, my associate pastor refused to walk away from the front of my car thus preventing me from driving out. I knew what would have happened if I got to her house because I was ready for a showdown. It was then I came to understand that you may have pastors you lead but who have their own private agenda. In every twelve there might be a “Judas”. I also learnt from that incident to master my emotions