Catalytic, Strategic, and Activating Leaders make up the Leadership Trifecta. If you’re a good polycentric leader, operating in many different spheres of work, you need to be able to function within all these giftings. However, just like the Fivefold Ministry Test, a self-assessment for Christian leaders modeled out of the Book of Ephesians, at the end of the day, you will most naturally thrive in one role. You have to self-select, and seek wisdom from other colleagues on which role in the Leadership Trifecta you excel in. Which do you most naturally align with – Catalytic, Strategic, or Activating?
Sometimes, you model a different role than your primary leadership trait, depending on the needs of the overall organization. Perhaps it’s a season of transition, and you need to more fully lean on your Activating skills to complete a project, but in another sector, the Strategic role is more natural to you. That’s okay, for a season. If I can find someone that is a better activator than I am, I want to empower them as quickly as possible, but no sooner. One thing is for certain, if you’re in a role that you’re not meant for, you’re going to languish, not flourish.
As you work through how the Leadership Trifecta relates to you and your team, remember to keep in mind that each role is vitally important. Churches often have the tendency to overemphasize the role of Catalyst, as that person is often in the spotlight and is the ‘seen’ person who could appear to have power, and the one who compels people to give financially. In reality, a Catalyst can be like an unbridled horse – it can take off full-speed ahead, but where’s it going? Without the other two roles, the Catalyst won’t make it to the finish line.
If you’re in a room full of leaders, do you know the Leadership Trifecta gifts that each person relates to? I hope it’s a resounding ‘yes’, because you’re on your way to being the most effective team you can be.