Devos_rich On Monday and Tuesday I was at the Leadership Summit Debrief in Chicago. It’s a gathering of all the Lead Pastors from different churches that serve as satellite sites for the Leadership Summit. This group gathers to review the Summit and be mentored by Bill Hybels and other key leaders that they bring in.

One of the leaders that they brought in this year was Rich DeVos. DeVos is a billionaire (listed as the 73rd wealthiest  person in the United States and the 248th wealthiest person in the world), founder of the Amway Corporation, the owner of the Orlando Magic and Christ Follower.  We had about ninety minutes to do questions and answers with this remarkable leader and here are a few of the highlights:

Why did you decide to trust
Bill and invest so much in the Willow Creek Association?

First
of all, I believe success attracts success.  I
first met Bill through his father and I saw his ministry continue to grow and
grow. I was always fascinated with
church builders – people could grow a church that would reach people. Bill was a success and I wanted to be a part
of helping him. Secondly, I’m a cheerleader. I
believe the most important words you can say to a person are “you can do
it!” It’s awful simple, but I just want
to tell people they can accomplish their dreams.

You did an interview for
the Leadership Summit
a few years ago and when asked about getting money from wealthy people you told
pastors to “Hit’em up” How?

First,
introduce yourself and help them get to know you. Be straight forward in your presentation and
tell them what you need and what it will accomplish. They will like to see
something started and finished. Don’t
just tell them it is for the budget. Tell them what you need and what it will accomplish. Be specific.

When you have to fire
someone, what is the best way to do that?

I
always want to be able to say, “I’ve been talking to you about this for 6
months…” It should not be a
surprise.

What is one challenge you
have for pastors?

I
like motivation more than encouragement. Illustrations and stories are a great way to motivate people and I think
that is the biggest thing lacking in their preaching. The question pastors need
to ask is “will they remember what was said?”  Keep the message clear.

You are writing a new book
titled Powerful Phrases of Positive People what are some of those
phrases?

Here are some of those powerful phrases:

  • I’m wrong,
  • I’m sorry.
  • I trust you.
  • I’m proud of you.
  • I luv ya!

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