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Setting and Achieving Goals for Your Church

John Gilman May 4, 2016

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Let’s be honest for a second. Are your church’s goals measurable? Maybe. Maybe not. In order to reach the goals you’ve set for yourself and your church body you must create well-defined plans and steps to lead to the attainment of those goals. That begs another question. What are your initiatives to reach these goals? Thinking about your initiatives will allow you to provide clarity and determine which path you need to go down to reach your goals.

Let’s say you want to increase attendance at your evening service or in small groups on Sunday morning. You should be tracking attendance for each throughout the year in your church management software. You can’t set goals without benchmarks, and benchmarks help you define what the goals should be. Start small first. Set weekly metrics that you want to meet. But don’t stop there. Review them each week. Find out what worked and what didn’t work. If you don’t already do this, it should be your first initiative.

Another initiative may be to encourage students to bring a friend with them on Wednesday nights. Perhaps starting a new social media channel is something you’ve experimented with. Maybe it’s a more personal initiative to re-engage people who are still members but haven’t been active in a while. Whatever the initiative and the related goal, you have to have benchmarks to set and measure them by.

Think of it this way; if you want to increase the number of volunteers you need to send out more requests, make more announcements before the service and encourage volunteers who are already serving to recruit for you. As always, make sure you are tracking volunteers in your church management software so you can see your progress. You can also use these initiative to determine which communication channel is the best to reach your volunteers. All of these steps lead to the greater goal of more volunteers.

Several factors are important to keep in mind when making goals and setting initiatives. Remember the who, what, when and how.

  • You’ll obviously need to know what needs to be done, but be as specific as possible. Have a specific goal like to increase attendance by 10% or to host one fundraising event every month.
  • Goals should be assigned to at least one person. Give ownership. One person needs to be responsible. This is the who.
  • There should be a goal of when it’s going to be finished, otherwise you’ll have procrastination on your hands.
  • You’ll need to figure out the how. You can accomplish this by laying out the steps to take, determining who is going to help and what supplies or resources you’ll need.

Through all of this, remember that your church management software should be your closest ally. From it, you’ll be able to identify the who, track progress, run reports, review the data compared to the benchmarks, track overall progress and more.

If you use these tips, you’ll be able to achieve your goals. Is there anything not listed here that helps you reach and exceed your goals?

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