Let's first start with this great quote from the book Great Work by David Sturt:
"...Research studies show that we routinely talk to a very small group of the same people over and over again. Most of us feel that we converse with about a dozen people on a regular basis, and that’s true (studies say that the number is somewhere between 7 and 15). But our true inner circle—the group we talk with the most—is even smaller. The fact is, we talk to the same 5 or 10 trusted confidants, allies, and buddies about 80 percent of the time.
That means that close to 13,000 of our 16,000 daily words (that we typically use daily) are directed at a very small group of friends and confidants. These closest coworkers, team members, family members, and friends make up our true inner circle. And this is a comfortable place to start having conversations about great work, because these people think like us, care about us, and believe in us. But talking to your inner circle alone can also become a disadvantage—because these people think like us, care about us, and believe in us."
The thrust of this quote is that conversations with people we don't usually talk to lead to ideas we wouldn't think of on our own. If you want to be drawn toward new ideas that will assist you in achieving great work than you need to have conversations with people outside of your inner circle.
Therefore as church & ministry leaders, we need to be having conversations with people:
- Outside of our denominational/theological tribe
- Who are not directly associated with our church or ministry
- With skill sets and experiences different than ours
- Who don't speak our nomenclature