The Penny on the Nightstand… A Lesson on Excellence

Church Staff / Leadership / Volunteers //

Last week I shared some thoughts about creativity from Ed Catmull.  Ed is the president of Pixar animation.

Today I’d like to share something I’ve learned from Ed about excellence.  It’s called the PENNY ON THE NIGHTSTAND.

Pixar Studios has a commitment to excellence that can be summarized in a shaded penny.  Here’s what that means.

For a movie they’re producing, they will literally spend days or weeks crafting what is the equivalent of “a shaded penny sitting on a nightstand that you’ll probably not even notice in the movie.”  

They are that committed to excellence.

So what’s your shaded penny?  The inside of a cabinet that a volunteer only occasionally sees?   A small word in a newsletter that’s going out to parents?  An email that’s only going to one person?  A corner in one of your rooms?


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About the Author

Dale Hudson is the Director of Children's Ministry at Christ Fellowship Church in South Florida. He has been in children's ministry for over 25 years. He was named one of the top 20 most influential people in children's ministry. He is the co-author of 5 books. He writes daily about his children's ministry journey at