Leadership is…

Below are 17 metaphors for leadership – what kind of leader are you?

  1. Leadership as a Captain: Guiding the ship through stormy seas, setting the course, and ensuring the safety and success of the crew.
  2. Leadership as a Gardener: Nurturing the growth and development of individuals and the organization, providing the right conditions for success.
  3. Leadership as a Coach: Inspiring and motivating individuals, helping them reach their full potential, and guiding them towards achieving their goals.
  4. Leadership as a Pilot: Taking charge of the journey, navigating through challenges, and safely reaching the desired destination.
  5. Leadership as a Shepherd: Caring for and guiding a flock, protecting them from harm, and leading them to greener pastures.
  6. Leadership as a Conductor: Orchestrating the diverse talents and abilities of individuals, harmonizing their efforts, and creating a unified and successful performance.
  7. Leadership as a Bridge: Connecting different people, departments, or organizations, fostering collaboration and synergy for collective achievement.
  8. Leadership as a Visionary: Painting a compelling vision of the future, inspiring others to join in its pursuit, and charting the path towards its realization.
  9. Leadership as a Torchbearer: Carrying the flame of inspiration, lighting the way for others, and igniting passion and enthusiasm within the team.
  10. Leadership as a Lighthouse: Providing guidance, stability, and a point of reference in times of uncertainty, helping others find their way.
  11. Leadership as a Catalyst: Sparking change, encouraging innovation, and creating an environment where new ideas and growth can flourish.
  12. Leadership as a Magician: Unleashing the hidden potential within individuals and the organization, turning challenges into opportunities, and achieving remarkable results.
  13. Leadership as a Storyteller: Communicating the organization’s values, purpose, and mission through engaging narratives that inspire and unite people.
  14. Leadership as a Warrior: Courageously facing obstacles and adversity, leading by example, and rallying the troops in times of difficulty.
  15. Leadership as a Sports Team Captain: Directing team strategies, motivating players, and fostering a sense of unity and camaraderie to achieve victory.
  16. Leadership as a Architect: Designing the blueprint for success, structuring systems and processes, and ensuring the organization’s foundation is strong and stable.
  17. Leadership as a Trailblazer: Venturing into uncharted territory, pushing boundaries, and paving the way for others to follow.
Prayer Uncategorized

Prayer for Church of Scotland General Assembly 2023

During GA2023 the New College Chapel will be available as a quiet space for prayer and reflection during lunchtimes, there will be online opportunity for prayer too – 1.15 to 1.45. In putting together some resource material to encourage prayer, it will be great if you can add either a brief prayer, or some topics for prayer. Copies of some will be available in the Chapel. I hope that this page may grow and help you in your prayers for the Church of Scotland in these times of change, as we meet in General Assembly 20-25th May 2023.

Change Leadership Resources

Culture of Innovation

5 Thursday Morning Online Gatherings to journey with the video series produced by Faith Nurture Forum based on Lorenzo Lebria’s TryTank project

Not sure but you may need to be a member of the ITsForMinistry FB group to join the ITForministry FaceBookk Room….

You can join at: – and answer a few questions and accept group rules…

Audio Change Hybrid Productivity Saw Sharpening Video

Hybrid Personalities!

As restrictions ease and the frequency of what have become known as ‘on-site’ or ‘in person’ meetings increase, so too increases divided opinion between ‘on-line’ and ‘off-line’. Is there a third option between the polarity? Of course there is, it’s known as hybrid.

Some don’t like the idea of hybrid and consider it a miserable experience; they think everyone should be ‘in the room’.

Some don’t like the idea of hybrid and consider it a sub-optimal experience; they think everyone should be online.

Some like the idea of hybrid and consider it the win-win option allowing each participant to engage bringing their strengths and personality to the encounter.

We have been doing a different kind of hybrid meeting for years, as different personalities gather to generate ideas, seek solutions, solve problems, progress projects, set policy and make decisions.

I like hybrid. I like to explore and experiment. I’m an ENFP Myers Briggs personality type, and like to think that I am aware of differing needs in those with different personalities.

There is a good article explaining the different ways different personality types engage with remote working at:

Some will clearly thrive in the online space, while others are at their best in physical space with others . No rights or wrongs, we interact differently.

There are many pitfalls to online and hybrid meeting. There are many pitfalls to on-site meetings. There must be honest reflection on whether the negatives are because of the online context, or because of the culture, experience and expectation that we bring to any meeting.

Hybrid gatherings bring many advantages including:

  • Choice for participants to engage in ways that allow them to give their best to the experience.
  • Carbon-footprint reduction by reducing travel
  • Time saving, reducing travel to and from meetings. Those living in remote areas often appreciate ‘remote access’
  • Choice to remain home in the family space while working without child-care/ parent care implications
  • Inclusivity: allowing disabled, or infirm people to engage, and with live captioning for example will make it possible for the hard of hearing to participate in a more meaningful way.
  • possibility of many different ways to engage creatively using virtual white-boards, online Q&A spaces and so on.

I recently drove 5 hours to attend an ‘in person’ consultation. Similar events had been online. It was really good to see people ‘in real life’. At the online events at least as many comments and ideas as people present were captured. At the ‘on-site’ meeting – the number of contributions ‘from the floor’ represented about 10% of those in the room! Enough said…

IRL, or ‘in real life’ enters our vocabulary. We talk of virtual meetings, and of ‘in person’ gatherings. Can I suggest that there is nothing virtual or any less ‘in person’, when we encounter one another using current technology.

In recent years, I have facilitated small hybrid meetings with participants around my rural congregations at virtually no cost, have facilitated hybrid Presbytery meetings with around 40 participants half online half in the room with a portable set up with a few hundred pounds worth of kit, and lead the brilliant team that has enabled a General Assembly with around 700 participants to meet, costing several tens of thousands of pounds in tech and people hours.

Hybrid is technically complex to achieve, but quite achievable as long as you can put in a little more effort and expense than simply plonking a laptop in the centre of the room and expecting everyone to have a satisfying experience.

For a small group of up to 6 or so meeting together sharing with a number of participants that can be seen in one screenful, the single laptop solution will work.

Beyond that, you need to consider:

Who will facilitate the tech aspects?

From experience, I’d say don’t try to facilitate or chair anything beyond the simplest of meetings yourself and keep an eye on all the tech aspects. Have someone else admit participants, watch for virtual hands, human hands, chat messages and ensure that online participants are brought into discussion as seamlessly as if they were in the room.

Audio In, Audio Out, Video In, Video Out

How do we ensure we hear everyone in the room?

You need to get audio into the computer running the on-line platform usually via USB. For a small meeting a single mic may suffice. Boundary mics are designed to pick up voices from a wide area and placed in the centre of a room will be effective. For larger spaces multiple mics will be required in which case an audio interface (analogue to digital/USB) will be required to connect mics (via XLR or jack plugs). An audio mixer can be connected to an interface, and many are available with USB connection built in.
Zoom, MS Teams and many other conferencing solutions provide very good ‘audio cancelling’ meaning that you don’t get feedback causing noisy audio. Experiment with the set up before the first real meeting!

How do we ensure we hear everyone online

The internal speaker on a laptop will probably not be sufficient for all but the smallest of meetings. Connect a Bluetooth or wired speaker. You will want to check on the position of the speaker to avoid possibility of feedback – but generally if you face the speaker away from the mics it should be good. Speakers will have a rating in Watts – a general rule would be 1W for every participant in the room. 50 folk in the room you want a 50W output to fill that space.

How do we see everyone in the room?

Don’t rely on the built in camera on a laptop. USB webcams will provide a very good Hi-Definition image. Have the webcam on a tripod or mount that can be swiveled round to view the current speaker. For a larger meeting you might consider a PTZ (Pan, Tilt, Zoom) camera which can be moved smoothly, or multiple (HDMI) cameras through a video switcher such as the ATEM Mini.

How do we see everyone online?

Connect the laptop HDMI output to one or more (through an HDMI splitter) projectors or monitors to enable that all can see online speakers.


In Zoom there are a number of settings to consider for hybrid meetings. Other platforms will have similar options.

Enable dual screen – will give you a secondary output showing just the current (or spotlighted) speaker – which is nice and clean without the chat/ participant list, or toolbars showing on screen

There is a setting to enable Hi-Definition video for all participants which if the broadband will allow would be good to enable.

There is much more…

that could be said about Hybrid, why it’s good, how to effect it, how to make meetings more engaging and why hybrid is here to stay. Do comment… I sense that this is a post to revisit and revise…

Hybrid is here to stay.

Embrace it, Invest in what it takes to make it work in your context, reflect on how to make meetings better, not because they are online or hybrid, but because they are the encounters that transform, progress and deliver.

Rev Donald McCorkindale
Updated: March 2022


  • Chad Littlefield at has some great free advice and tools to create engagement in online spaces.
  • In the ITsForMinistry FaceBook Group (supporting this website) there have been some helpful hints and tips about setting up and facilitating hybrid meetings.

Faith, Wisdom & Spirituality

I recently connected with Dr Manoj Krishna, founder of the Human Wisdom Project – and am delighted that he will be my first guest in a series of Tuesday afternoon conversations on Zoom around ‘Faith, Wisdom and Spirituality in the 21st Century’ – beginning Tuesday 1st March.

Olive Fleming Drane, theologian, author, clown and member of the IT’s For Ministry FaceBook Group is my guest – on 8th March.

Details of the other conversations and registration link is at:

Each conversation will stand on its own… and is for all who are curious and interested to awaken, and develop understanding and engagement in Faith, Wisdom and Spirituality. Come along to as many as you can… Recordings will be available to catch up later… but you don’t get to ask your questions and contribute to the conversation that way…

Thank you



Freudenfreude – pleasure in others’ success

Freudenfreude, German term used for taking pleasure in other people’s joy and successes.

Interesting blog post:


Better Meetings – on-line and on-site

A couple of paragraphs from an email sent earlier today to a colleague… that are probably worthy of ’putting out there’!

“I often wish that there could be more time in meetings to take time for ideation – generating the good and bad ideas, evaluating options and perhaps making new and creative discoveries along the way – rather than receiving a paper with a proposal from ‘an expert’.

There are many ways in which, particularly over the past two years, that online meetings have been made more engaging and imaginative than pre-conceived. One very simple idea that I have used much recently is to put out a question and ask for response in the CHAT – and ask everyone not to hit ENTER (or click the arrow) until everyone has had a moment to make their own response – then all together ENTER is clicked and there’s a flurry of ideas… everyone’s ‘voice’ is heard – rather than collusion with whoever speaks first…”1

  1. An idea from Chad Littlefield, www.we
Change Leadership Productivity Resources Saw Sharpening Songs


I’m pulling together a list of resources for congregational leaders in my Presbytery and will share it here too…

What other resources would you add to the list..?


Church of Scotland

Church of Scotland newsletters


You can subscribe to the various Church of Scotland E-newsletters:

  • Ascend – Ministry Support
  • Children’s and Youth Ministry
  • Priority Areas
  • Life and Work
  • The Guild

News and Events on the web


Children’s and Youth Ministry

Now your talking Facebook group.

Worship Resources

Stirling Presbytery List


Leadership & Change

Carey Nieuwhof

Link: careynieuwhof.com4


Link: itsforministry.org5


Podcast links here are to Apple podcasts, but many will also be found on Anchor, Spotify sand wherever you find your favourite podcasts.

To Listen to:

To Be Fair


Rev Martin Fair reflects on faith and popular culture

Working Preachers’ Sermon Brainwave


How to:

Anchor – tools to power any podcast


Create and Promote Video

How to create a YouTube channel


Bible Study

Logos Bible Software




Various links to music on the web, much of which can be used in recordings and worship streams. (Always ensure that you have the appropriate licenses in places when recording or streaming)


Link: fischy.com12

Events and innovation

Link: trytank.org13

Rev Lorenzo Lebrija


A series of events will take place in March to kickstart new support for innovation across the Church of Scotland.

A joint event with the Scottish Episcopal Church, the workshops over the weekend of March 17-19 will be led by the Rev Lorenzo Lebrija (above), founding director of the US Episcopal Church’s TryTank initiative.



Link: canva.com15 is a brilliant for content creation. The full version is available freely to charities on submission of OSCR registration verification. Great tool for creating, scheduling and posting Social Media posts, creating posters, powerful presentations, graphics of all sorts.



Edit photos and create stunning designs right in your browser, on your phone or desktop for free (and paid options) Start from an empty canvas, a photo, a video or select one of the crafted templates.

Images to use


Listing of free (and some paid) image download sites.

Procurement/ Discounts

Charity Digital – Software


Charity Workers Discounts


Digital Offerings, Donations and Fundraising

Link: (SCVO)


Find funding for your charity, community group or social enterprise using our free online search engine. From small grants to funding for big capital projects, we can help you track down the funding you need to make a difference in your community.


Our aim at Beyond Giving is to support you find the best solution and turn a complex problem into a simple solution. We can also help you achieve financial sustainability through the accessing of grants and funding, including exploration of new income generation models, enabling your mission and community based projects to flourish.
























Blessed are the Treelike

‘Blessed are the ones… like trees that grow beside a stream, that bear fruit at the right time, and whose leaves do not dry up. They succeed in everything they do.’
From Psalm 1

Blessed are the treelike…
Blessed are the treelike…

Like trees we have roots, trunks, branches, leaves, flowers and fruit


Drawing on strength and inspiration from God, family, friends, colleagues, neighbours, we are nourished, sustained and blessed. Intentional time to care for ourselves and nurture these relationships, and be equipped, encouraged, strengthened and enthused1 by them, is key to succeeding in our plans and projects.


The trunk represents personal development – taking time to develop skills and hone abilities. Taking time to ‘sharpen the saw’ as Steven Covey would say.


The branches are the ways we connect with the world and its people – sharing our gifts, our art, our practice. ‘We make a difference in the world when we seek to make a difference – not because it’s easy but because it matters. This is all part of the practice’2

Leaves, Flowers and Fruit

and the leaves, flowers and fruit are the outcomes… some which we didn’t anticipate at the beginning… some functional, some simply beautiful and some to nourish others…

‘Blessed are the ones… like trees that grow beside a stream, that bear fruit at the right time, and whose leaves do not dry up. They succeed in everything they do.’

  1. Isn’t ‘Enthused’ a wonderful word – from the Greek ‘en Theos’ – literally ‘in God’
  2. The Practice, Seth Godin, Chapter 42
Change Leadership Prioritising Productivity

Your Contribution

What must you do today?

What are you up to today….?

✅ What will you do today…?

✅ What difference will you make..?

✅ What will you learn..?

✅ What questions will you ponder..?

✅ Who will you ask for help and support..?