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During staff meeting today I got an automated email (let me say that again, AUTOMATED) from Nelson Searcy, Lead Pastor at Journey Church in New Your City. I have visited Journey Church one time and love the work they are doing in NYC. They have been selling resources the past few years on a website called Church Leader Insights and I get emails from them about products and training opportunities. Today I received an email from the same website and it read like this…

Fr: Nelson Searcy
Re: I’m concerned


I’m writing because I’m concerned about you.

For the last three months you’ve been hearing about my Senior Pastors Tele-Coaching Network that begins NEXT WEEK on Thursday, Aug 20. This network is all about helping you and your church go to the next level of growth and impact.

I’ve done everything I can to tell you about this network . . . I sent you a 30-minute Q & A video . . .I sent you the unedited testimonies from those who just completed the network . . . plus several other email and mailed invitations for you to apply.

. . . but I still don’t see your name on the application list!

Frankly, I find that puzzling.

Look, if you are interested in seeing your church grow and your leadership ability increase, I urge you to apply right now.

. . . stop whatever you are doing and go to this Web site, download and complete the application:

WHAT? Nelson, have you ever read a Seth Godin book about permission marketing? I just find the email funny. I have never met Nelson. I am not sure why he is concerned about me. I am glad he is tele-coaching and I will apply if I want to. Who will read that email and say…WOW I THINK I WILL APPLY TODAY! It is never good to sell ideas and mentoring that hard. If you have to work that hard to get people plugged into a coaching network or sell a mentoring service you might want to rethink your strategy. So there ya go…just a little vent about a crazy email today. What do you think? Is this leadership marketing gone too far?