QT4CM Episode 35

decision-making Jun 06, 2017

How can ministry workers make effective decisions about major changes to their ministry?

Patricia Jehle answers this question from a missionary in the field — "Give us tips and practical tools on making decisions about change, moving forward, or terminating a ministry that isn't productive or standing fast with a hope for future breakthroughs." Today's podcast will be on listening to God to make a decision regarding making a ministry change or not. This process seems, in some ways, rather daunting, but in other ways, quite simple. It is daunting when we feel we might get it wrong, but I believe God will guide you in your decision-making process. It is simple when thinking about God's big picture and what He wants in general for all of us. This is the first in a three part series on decision-making. Our Christian Ministry Maven for these episodes is Patricia Jehle, a university instructor in Switzerland and a business coach.  

Click the green play button to listen to Patricia:   Here are the two models Patricia mentions: Two Models that I like for decision making: Rational and Ethical Models — these are found below in the notes along with the questions asked.   Rational: 

  • Identify the problem to be solved
  • Establish criteria for success
  • Weigh the decision criteria (what’s most/least important)
  • Generate alternatives (as many as possible- brainstorming)
  • Evaluate your alternatives (what happens if you do/don’t, etc.)
  • Choose your best alternative
  • Implement the decision
  • Evaluate the decision
  • Make any needed changes


  • Stop and think: identify the situation and the problem
  • Construct a description of the problem
  • For whom is this a problem, for whom not
  • View this in terms of an ethical framework
  • Consider moral and legal principles
  • Identify any support that may be available (who can help?)
  • Identify courses of action (Brainstorm)
  • Select course of action
  • Evaluate the outcome (use a neutral supervisor), ask who may be hurt
  • Regularly check the impact of the decision on people and events

  Always remember to think in complex terms

  •  The Pareto principle applies, always- questions
  • There will be unexpected consequences, so watch for them and adjust when necessary; it’s okay to make another decision, or to readjust
  • Remember that your organization’s system may really mess up your decision, so be prepared for disappointment and re-adjustment
  • Always try for a win-win situation for all involved

  Here are the two books Patricia recommended:Decision Making and the Will of God:  A Biblical Alternative to the Traditional View.” Garry Friesen with Robin Maxson, Multnomah Press “The Power of a Whisper:  Hearing God. Having the Guts to Respond.” Bill Hybels, Zondervan Press    


Patricia Jehle (pronounced "yay lay") is a part-time lecturer at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts  Northwest Switzerland and is also a certified business coach and a spiritual director.  Besides working for InterVarsity USA in the past, she has served as a short term missionary in the Philippines and in Thailand.  Along with several other ministries, she is involved in the leadership of a church plant in her local neighborhood in Switzerland. Sharing the life-giving truth of the Gospel is one of her passions. Patricia Jehle has a Masters of Education from the University of Minnesota.   Patricia Jehle can be reached through her: Websites:  www.jehle-coaching.com/     and     www.jehle-coachingexpat.com LinkedIn:  www.linkedin.com/in/patricia-jehle-christensen Facebook: www.facebook.com/Jehle.Coaching/ Twitter: @PJehle    




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