The Symptoms Flare Up in Different Ways But It’s Always the Same Thing
I know you know it; that one place where every frustration in your church seems to go to wreak havoc. Although the symptoms flare up in different ways (relationships, demand, budget, response), all roads lead back to one thing…
In the midst of projects, deadlines, and keeping up with the daily grind, effective communications strategies are often overlooked. And, you don’t realize something’s missing until you start to feel the pain.
How are you investing in this critical growth engine for your church? Most churches aren’t.
Here are three places to start investing:
1. Define a communications strategy.
When “communications” is defined as what you preach about on the weekend and a list of transactions to promote programs and events, you’ve got a problem. You need an effective plan that you can steer people back to when things go off the rails. An objective third party can help you change your paradigm from project management of the short-term symptoms to a system that fixes core issues for long term church health, alignment and growth.
2. Develop your leaders.
Leadership development is crucial if you want existing creatives to operate at new levels and move work into new territory. An experienced communications coach can help increase bandwidth by helping your staff build the muscle to troubleshoot sticking points, dilute reactive processes and build new processes that break old patterns that are no longer working.
3. Facilitate a new conversation with stakeholders.
When you look at familiar information from a non-familiar angle, it brings new perspectives to old problems. Start with this sample DIY brand cue card. Use it as an exercise to produce a refining conversation with a handful of your team members. It will challenge you to bring fresh context to overused and outdated (“legacy”) phrases and assumptions.
After you complete your brand cue card, look at your communications structure, inventory, activity and priorities. What meshes with the brand experience you just outlined? What doesn’t? Make adjustments, one vehicle at a time, in the places you see the biggest disconnects. You should start to see conversations shift from output to outcome. And, you’ll be amazed at how a few changes in volume and priority can make things work better and people work better together.
Fixing your church communication pain points is an inside-out job. A communications strategy is the glue that holds a plan together; not the activity (i.e., marketing, advertising, graphics, video, social media, emails, promotions, etc.)