Learn to live, lead, and love like Jesus

Leading Well

Sabbath Rest

Worship | Rest | Recreation
Embed Sabbath moments into every day.
Establish adequate margins for rest and renewal.
Reclaim your interests and hobbies.
List your primary wellsprings in life.

Collegial Support

Befriending | Encouraging | Crowd sourcing
Participate in cohorts for inspiration & encouragement.
Connect online via the LW Facebook Group.
Find a mentor or be a mentor to another pastor.
Collaborate on projects with your colleagues.

Practical Learning

Rethink Assumptions | Reimagine Possibilities
Meet with a Certified coach for transformation.
Join a short-term cohort around a specific theme.
Participate in Master Classes offered year-round.
Attend onsite and online Learning Retreats.

Meet the Leading Well Planning Team.

Rev. Matthew Short

Assistant to the Bishop, Greater Milwaukee Synod
Matt lives in the Milwaukee area. He is being trained as a coach, serves as our technology guru, and oversees the Leading Well Facebook Group. Matt finds Sabbath rest through exercise, dwelling in the Word, and listening a variety of music.

Jim LaDoux

Partner, Vibrant Faith Ministries
Jim lives in Minneapolis, has been part of the Leading Well Leadership Team since 2005, and oversees the Leading Well initiative, cohort coaching, and the Siebert grant program.  He finds Sabbath  through journaling, listening to music and podcasts. He lives out his callings as a husband, a father,  a coach, and a small group leader.

Deacon Tammy Devine

 Coach,  Devine Coaching
Tammy lives in Bloomington, Minnesota. She is a Deacon, a certified coach, and works with Portico related to wholeness. She finds renewal walking, reading the Daily Text, and spending time at her cabin in northern Minnesota.

Who We Are

We are a collection of Christ-centered, Spirit-driven church leaders who strive to live and lead well in the midst of continuous change. We focus on what's present, what's possible, and what God is up to in our lives.

What We Do

We create online and onsite venues for people to experience authentic relationships, and Sabbath rest. We spark collegial conversations and find better ways to live well, lead well, and partner with God's dreams for the world. 

What's Different

We believe in whole-life discipleship, the importance to tending to body, mind, and Spirit, and the need for becoming more agile leaders who can anticipate and adjust to the disruptive challenges facing our churches.



Leading Well refrained from offering onsite learning retreats this past year due to Covid-19. Moving forward, we are planning to offer both a online retreat experience as well as an onsite learning event.  We'd like  to find our your intentions for participating this coming year and would appreciate you  filling out the  INTEREST & AVAILABILITY FORM located on this page.  Retreats would begin at noon on Tuesdays and end by  11:30am on Friday. Some content would be pre-recorded and some would be live sessions. Participants would have access to all sessions, recordings, video interviews, and resources. Prices are still being negotiated with Spirit in the Desert (AZ) and the Duncan Center (FL) but would be similar to past retreats ($275 online tuition; $450 onsite tuition/meals: $450 lodging for double occupancy; $550 lodging for single occupancy. Our theme for the coming year will be Learning to be a Healing Community.  More details will be available the first week in June.

Register for  upcoming learning  opportunities & 5-session cohort groups

Participate in Monthly Book Discussions  (12:00-12:50pm) focused on living and leading well
Participate in a  5-Session Cohort Coaching Group ( most cohorts begin in  September and end  late October)
These cohort group that focus on developing a 1-page plan around a specific ministry areas. Topics include:
Groups will be formed based on the # of people  interested and people's time availability.  You may also sign up to receive 1-3 hours of individual coaching related to the topics above if time constraints hinder a cohort from forming. 

12-Monthly Cohort Coaching Program (funded by the Siebert Foundation)

  • 24 monthly cohort sessions.
  • Access to training videos and resources.
  • 6 one-on-one coaching sessions.
  • Individual & church assessments.
  • Ongoing dialogue via Leading Well Facebook Group.
  • Access to research articles & book summaries.
  • Assistance with creating a Leadership Formation Road Map
Monthly sessions follow the agenda below. What makes each session unique are the insights, ideas and shared wisdom that comes out of the coaching conversations.
  1. Relate: Check-in, caring conversations, prayer.
  2. Review: Readings, postings, and 30-day goals.
  3. Reflect: Gain insights from wins & challenges.
  4. Refocus: Share 30-day goals and action steps.
  5. Resource: List support needed for next steps.
  6. Wrap up: Summarize learnings; end with prayer

2021  Schedule  of  Monthly  Cohort  Coaching  Themes

 Meet  via  ZOOM Call 408.638.0968 (ID: 541 252 9630) | Online: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/5412529630
Schedule a  COACHING SESSION with Jim  Schedule sessions @ https://calendly.com/jladoux
JANUARY | Measure What Matters 
  • Relate: When and how do you take stock of your life? 
  • Review: In what ways are you living into your legacy? 
  • Refocus: Shuffle steps toward transformation. 
  • Resource: Create or update your Leading Well Plan.

FEBRUARY | Do What Matters Everyday
  • Relate: What are some of your life-giving rituals? 
  • Review: What habits and norms are working for you at church? 
  • Refocus: What new habits/norms might you try-on ? 
  • Resources Habit-stacking practices.

MARCH | Filling Slots VS Fulfilling Callings
  • Relate: What do you know when you’re in the flow? 
  • Review: What are you holding on to that’s draining? 
  • Refocus: What will you do more of this month? 
  • Resource: Book Summary – The Stories We Live.

APRIL | Become a Talent Scout
  • Relate: Who called out your leadership gifts? 
  • Review: Which leaders are you developing?
  • Refocus: How will you identify & invest in leaders?
  • Resource: Article – Sowing Seeds of Possibility.
MAY | Position People for Maximum Impact
  • Relate: Do you have a process for assessing leaders? 
  • Review: Who needs to get off the bus? Why? 
  • Refocus: Who needs a different seat?
  • Resource: Podcasts from Andy Stanley.

JUNE | Develop Current and Future Leaders
  • Relate: In what ways have your leaders grown? 
  • Review: How long is your leadership prospect list? 
  • Refocus: Making plans for building capacities. 
  • Resource: Leadership Development Matrix.

JULY | Upgrade Your Meetings and Events
  • Relate: Which meetings do you dread going to? Why?
  • Review: What outcomes do you set for meetings?
  • Refocus: Create meetings that matter.
  • Resource: Takeaways from Death By Meeting.

AUGUST | Lead From the Second Chair
  • Relate: How often do you to lead from behind? 
  • Review: How do you support/equip front-line leaders? 
  • Refocus: Strategies for leading from the second chair.
  • Resource: Takeaways from  Leading From the 2nd Chair.
SEPTEMBER | Create Vivid Visions
  • Relate: Are your leaders aiming at the bulls eye?
  • Review: Is your mission/vision captivating?
  • Refocus: Tips for creating/sustaining  vivid visions
  • Resource: Takeaways from The Vision-Driven Leader.

OCTOBER | Move Ideas to Implementation 
  • Relate: Do your leaders have a bias for action?
  • Review: What causes great ideas to die on the vine?
  • Refocus: Design systems to support implementation..
  • Resources: Takeaways from Start Finishing.

NOVEMBER | Build a Transparent Culture
  • Relate: How transparent is your congregation?
  • Review: What would a culture of candor look like?
  • Refocus: Steps toward  increased transparency.
  • Resources: Takeaways from Transparency.

DECEMBER | Build an Experimental Culture
  • Relate: On a scale of 1-10, how experimental are you?
  • Review: What prevents you from experimenting? 
  • Refocus: Strategies for improving & innovating. 
  • Resource:  Takeaways from The Agile  Church.

CREATE  A  PLAN  |  View  Jim LaDoux's  Annual  Leadership  Formation  Plan based on the 6Fs

1 | Grow in FAITH every day

  • Plan and schedule quarterly Sabbath retreats (2-3 day events each) - Colorado, Florida, Kentucky, and Arizona
  • Define who God has entrusted me to during this chapter in my life .
  • Listen to entire Bible via Audible.
  • Watch Introduction to the New Testament via The Great Courses.
Completion Date
December 31
December 31

2 | Create FUN, memorable moments with FRIENDS and FAMILY

  • Go skiing at A-Basin in Colorado.
  • Tail rail trip via Empire Builder to Portland.
  • Connect with Dave, Jim, Tom, Joan, Patty, Bonnie Sue, and Mark (friends and family members).
  • Repurpose lower level space for gaming, exercising and watching movies (reconfigure space, add new furniture and outlets).
  • Visit Barcelona/Montserrat with  son Brett (bike, sail, and hike).
  • Attend family weddings for Matthew, Eric; family gathering with Ertzgards.
  • Attend Leading Well Learning Retreat in Carefree, AZ.

3 | Redeploy FINANCES to fund retirement, a new home, and increased generosity

September 30
November 30
November 30
  • Pledge to Prince of Peace's 3-year Get it Done campaign.
  • Meet with retirement planner and financial planner; determine anticipated retirement dates.
  • Increase average myFico scores to 815+ before seeking pre-approved mortgage.
  • Add. $6000 to retirement IRAs; add $1000/month to retirement contributions.
  • Explore alternative housing options; possibly move; be pre-approved for a new mortgage.
  • Replace pond-side deck; replace flooring on main level.
August 31
July 31

4 | FUTURE-proof work situation by upgrading coaching & technology skills

  • Create and populate Youtube channel; create youtube content for Vibrant Faith Coaching School.
  • Update format and content of all coaching and Leading Well tools.
  • Learn Final Cut Pro; use regularly fo editing work-related Youtube videos.
  • Obtain PCC-level ICF coaching certification.
  • Create Udemy-style online learning modules for Coaching School.
July 31
August 31
November 30

5 | Make FITNESS an integral part of my daily lifestyle

  • Practice 1MAD and intermittent fasting 3 days a week.
  • Lose a pound a month through increased walking, exercise, and fasting.
  • Meet with orthopedic surgeon; develop daily physical therapy routine.
  • Meet with cardiologist; schedule ablation surgery.
September 30

6 | FORM new habits and norms to support living and leading well

  • Arise at  or before 5am each day; go to bed before 10pm most evenings.
  • Create new habits and folders to respond to emails in a timely fashion and to maintain a zero-inbox.
  • Schedule  2 3-hour time blocks each week specifically for creative/design time.
  • Write 3 blog posts/week via surfacetosoul.org.
September 30
September 30
October 31

CREATE  A  PLAN  |  Sample  "Faithful  Next  Steps"  Related to  Monthly  Cohort  Sessions

JANUARY | Measure What Matters 

  • Create and share age-specific faith formation outcomes based on the 13 indicators of a Maturing Faith.
  • Assist Stewardship Team to develop goals for increased online giving (# of givers; average giving amount, # of new online givers).
  • Double the number of followers on Facebook; triple the number of monthly comments on Facebook posts.
  • Assist new members with developing 5 new friends at church within the first 90 days of being a member.
Completion Date

FEBRUARY | Do What Matters Everyday

  • Start listing what I hope to accomplish during each days "4 hour " time block; create consistent space for deep work on high priority ministry projects.
  • Having a 15 minute conversation with a parishoner that I haven't seen recently.
  • Take a 15 minute walk with the dog in the morning, and a 15 minute walk with my spouse in the evening (5 times a week).
  • Quit eating/snacking/drinking after 7:30pm 95 days a week.

MARCH | Fulfill Callings Rather Than Fill Slots

  • Rethink and reinvent our nominating process - meet quarterly, create job descriptions, send invitation letters, pray about  & interview candidates.
  • Interview frequent visitors and new members using using questions from How Has God SHAPED You to learn about people's callings.
  • Set terms of service for ministry positions; schedule interviews with unpaid servants before end of service to discern next steps in ministry.  
  • Create, and regularly refer to, ministry descriptions that outline a primary purpose of positions along with gifts and qualifications needed.

APRIL | Become a Talent Scout

  • Create a master list of "architects, contractors, construction workers, realtors (i.e. designers, doers, dreamers, delegators).
  • Keep a "prospect list" of possible leaders and unpaid servants.
  • Spend time once a monthly at staff meeting sharing the 3 people each person will seeking to invite into ministry.
  • Start regularly asking volunteers, "Who else would be good at what you're doing?"or "Who else could you see helping you with this ministry?"

MAY | Position People for Maximum Impact

  • Reduce size of the board to 7 members; standing committees to just 5 or less.
  • Convert 3 standing committees to 2 project teams and 2 project coordinators.
  • Intentionally groom current leaders for future roles that honor their gifts, training and experiences.
  • Have all pastors and paid program staff create 3-year personal and professional development plans; share completed plans with their colleagues.

JUNE | Develop Current and Future Leaders

  • Create plans and resources for equipping committee chairs and team leaders to assemble, form, and sustain high-performing teams.
  • Create a collection of available to resources to equip and support current and future leaders that reflect multiple learning styles.
  • Equip all paid and unpaid leaders ways to act (set short-term wins), inspect (evaluate results), and innovate (improve programs and practices).
  • Create an email distribution list that includes all current and future leaders; send monthly updates and resources to leaders.
  • Post downloadable leadership links and resources on our church website for all leaders and members to easily access.

Join our Online Community

Get Connected. Go Deeper.

Leading Well has a very active Facebook Group where church leaders learn form, pray for, and encourage others.  Click below to check out the site!

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