It’s hard to believe but we are almost into the 4th quarter of 2018. As we move closer to the end of the year it might be a good time to think about your 2019 church planning and what you should be doing now.
There is an old saying “If you fail to plan – you plan to fail”.
Planning helps us stay focused on those things that move us closer to achieving our mission. This includes ensuring there are resources available in the next 12 months to support church strategy.
Now might be a good time to start scheduling those church leadership meetings to discuss plans for 2019.
2019 Church Planning – 7 Things to Think About
1. Church Strategy
Strategy and planning is how churches continue to develop members and grow.
The third quarter of the year makes it a great time to revisit the strategy and direction for your church.
This should include planning for the predictable – as well as the unpredictable.
Devote some time to do a SWOT analysis and talk about the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that face your church.
Brainstorm ways your church can build on its strengths and address its weaknesses.
For example, look at those things that might be standing in the way of your church fulfilling its mission.
2. Set 2019 Church Goals
Goals can be a tool to translate strategy into actionable steps and ultimately get things done. Spend time writing goals for 2019. Put them on paper and assign responsibility to get them done.
Monitor them monthly and manage them through a performance management process.
Church Goals that are written, managed and achieved are how successful organizations achieve strategy and move to the next level.
3. Create A Church Budget
Budgeting ensures responsible stewardship of church financial resources.
This process should include looking at how the ministry spends its resources and plans to invest in those things that further its mission.
Look also at those capital equipment needs and put a plan and budget in place to ensure the funds are available when needed.
For example, if your sound board is on its last leg, reserve some resources for next year now so you don’t end up having a Sunday to remember!
4. Learn From Church Volunteers
Volunteers are the engine of the church, and without them, most churches would have to close their doors.
Volunteers have a great perspective and can offer insight into improving operational efficiencies. Take advantage of this collective knowledge and spend the time and resources to support their efforts!
5. Write Goals For Church Employees
Church employees facilitate the church experience and have special needs. Talk to your employees and look for ways to keep them engaged and committed.
Burned out employees simply go through the motion so spend some time finding ways to keep them focused! Church volunteers and members rely heavily on church employees so be sure to take care of them!
6. Talk To Church Members
Members have a vested interest in the church so take the time to understand their experience so you can incorporate their needs into strategy.
Spend some time focusing on church members and identifying their spiritual and social needs. Members fund the church so talk to congregants and make sure the church is meeting their needs – within the boundaries of the church mission.
For example, if there is an aging demographic in the church body, make a plan and budget to start a program for people over 60. Investing in these groups can pay off big time in donations.
7. Update Emergency Preparedness Plan
It seems like it is almost weekly there disasters, mass shootings and unexpected crises erupt. Every church should have a plan to activate in the event of an emergency.
Now is a good time to review and update the emergency preparedness plan to ensure your church is ready for the unexpected. It is only wisdom to have a plan and know how to respond in the event of an emergency. Who more than the church should be prepared?
Churches are the light of this very dark world and provides the hope for us all. Take the time to plan now for next year so your church can continue to reach your community.
Have you mapped out a plan for 2019 yet?