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Why Your Mission Is What You Measure

What types of “film” would you watch to improve the effectiveness of your church?

Keeping in mind I’m using “film” in a figurative sense—there are many ways to observe, measure and evaluate activities in your organization for possible improvement.

What most established churches measure is harmony, stability and privilege. That is what occupies the agenda of most staff meetings, congregational gatherings and denominational processes.

Churches go to great lengths to measure harmony. They mark every single, conceivable and even half-baked complaint, anxiety or hurt feeling.

Churches go to great lengths to measure stability. They chart the financial and membership trends. They have mastered the art of risk management.

Churches go to great length to measure privilege. They maintain elaborate by-laws and exacting processes for consensus management.

Often the problem is a watching and seeking world sees the disconnect between the stated (or at least assumed) mission of the church and the reality.

Is it possible to consider other activities the church should be doing? How about “watching the film” in these areas for starters?

Do you have a red carpet?

What is your guest experience like? How do you welcome people to your campus? What makes your guests say, “Wow—I didn’t expect that!”

How do you handle frequent fliers?

Welcoming every guest is important. Welcoming guests for the second and third time is extremely important!

Who’s on your team?

Team matter— if you’re going to be in the game, you’ve got to have a team. There are probably dozens of opportunities in your church for people to be involved. How do you move them from attending to participating?

What’s my draft like?

Sports teams don’t just randomly pick their players; they spend lots of money and effort to know the potential of each player. Recruiting leaders in your church ought to operate the same way.

How many teams are in your league?

Your church probably worships in a large group or two, but it will only thrive and grow by creating small groups. How do you create them, what do you expect them to do and how do they reproduce?

How do you define a win?

In sports, you look at the scoreboard. What’s a win look like for your church as individuals, groups and the church as a whole?

I’ve only scratched the surface—you can probably add a dozen more activities to this list—things you ought to be “watching the film” on. Understanding what is important, and then taking steps to continually improve it, will produce results.