Second chair leaders play a critical role in churches across the country and beyond. They carry heavy responsibilities, lead teams of staff and volunteers, and oversee a variety of ministries. They serve in paid and unpaid positions. They are “the boss” to many, yet they are not ultimately in charge. It’s easy to understand how these leaders might feel frustrated and worn out.
Mike Bonem, co-author of Leading from the Second Chair, takes that important work to the next level, with Thriving in the Second Chair. He points readers beyond their external circumstances to the ways they can act and think differently. He highlights ten key practices that will help second chair leaders thrive, and not just survive.
Thriving in the Second Chair draws on Mike’s own experience as an executive pastor and the countless conversations he’s had as a coach and friend to second chair leaders in a variety of ministry settings. It offers proven and practical counsel that will allow their lives and ministries to be fulfilling, vital, and sustainable.
Praise for Thriving in the Second Chair
Mike Bonem puts into clear words what is so often difficult say, let alone consistently practice. You can’t find your stride if the partnership doesn’t work. This book is not a magic wand that promises to make the complexities vanish; it’s a road map to help you navigate those complexities so you can thrive inside your calling.
Dan Reiland, Executive Pastor / Chief of Staff, 12Stone Church, Lawrenceville, GA
Mike Bonem’s writing has been an invaluable source of wisdom for me in my roles as an executive leader in two large multi-site churches. Leading from the Second Chair was a lifeline in my early days of ministry leadership and I continue to recommend it to every second chair leader I know. In his new book, Thriving in the Second Chair, Mike addresses the sincere challenges that second chair leaders face and equips you with the tools to not just survive, but thrive.
Jenni Catron, CEO of The 4Sight Group and author of The 4 Dimensions of Extraordinary Leadership
Thriving in the Second Chair is a compelling, clear, and practical guide which will equip leaders for more effective service. Drawing upon years of research and coaching, Mike helps align vision, strengthen collaboration, and deepen trust-based relationships. For teams seeking to make a significant impact, I highly recommend this book!
Peter Greer, president and CEO of HOPE International and coauthor of Mission Drift
He did it. Again. Somehow Mike Bonem crawled back into the minds of second chair leaders and translated our thoughts, concerns, insights, fears, joys and experiences into a much-needed book. Mike continues to challenge every second chair to live up to God’s calling for our very unique positions.
Judy West, Pastor/Staff & Leadership Development, The Crossing, St. Louis
Thriving in the Second Chair is a “must read” for senior pastors and their associates, bishops and their cabinets, and executive church leaders and their staffs. Grounded in deep spiritual truths and honest conversation, Thriving offers sensible, thoughtful pathways for leadership teams to flourish in their work on behalf of God’s mission. Through his many years of working with church leaders at a variety of levels, Bonem is superb at honoring individual uniqueness while helping the organization focus on its mission. Thriving is a marvelous tool to plumb deep springs of conversation among the church’s leaders.
Bishop Janice Riggle Huie, Texas Annual Conference, United Methodist Church