Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
It is hard to believe, but we are in the 4th quarter of 2020. This year has been anything but typical – to say the least.
Use this group of committed members to help you write church goals for 2021.
An important part of the church strategic planning process is setting church goals and objectives.
Goals are an outcome of the strategic planning process and should be written so they are measurable. This measure will help you monitor progress toward completion.
Goals map out steps to achieve a strategic objective and do not need to be overly complicated.
But, the implementation of goals does require discipline and a commitment to follow through to completion.
I like to use the SMART goal model to achieve these desired results.
SMART Goals are:
Specific: Is the goal specific enough for clarity?
Measurable: Is there a way to measure the success of the goal?
Attainable: Is the goal truly attainable?
Realistic: Is the goal realistically written?
Timely: Is there a timeline associated with the goal to ensure a completion date?
Church goals should be an outcome of strategy and written to help move the organization forward.
Examples of strategy might be increasing weekly offerings, improving programs and ministries, reducing costs, or improving members, volunteers, and employees’ experience.
Let’s Look At Some Examples Of Church Goals:
1. Increase weekly church volunteer participation by 10% (100 to 110) by December 20xx.
2. Reduce operating budget expenses by 10% ($100,000 to $90,000) by June 20xx.
3. Increase weekly attendance by 20% (500 to 600) by December 20xx.
4. Establish volunteer leadership training and train 75% of volunteers by October 20xx.
Writing goals should include a discussion with the appropriate people and answer the following questions:
4 Questions to Ask When Writing Church Goals
1. What? (needs to be done)
Begin the process by looking at the strategic plan and asking what needs to be done to achieve the plan.
For instance, if part of a strategic plan is to develop volunteers for higher levels of responsibility what might be goal number 4 above 4. Establish volunteer leadership training and train 75% of volunteers by October 20xx.
Ask this question to begin the conversation that will result in cascading action steps (see How below).
2. Who? (will do it)
Written goals are futile unless there is someone assigned to get them done.
Determine who in the organization is best suited, equipped, and willing to do the work.
Identify this person (or team of people) and provide them with the resources to accomplish the goal.
For instance, if one of the steps in organizing a volunteer fair is to recruit volunteers, make sure there are budget dollars to support any costs associated with that task, i.e., dollars for signage, prizes, handouts, etc.
3. When? (timeline for completion)
It is important to set the expectation for when a goal should be accomplished. This target date creates some urgency for getting it done.
Tip: Ask the person responsible for how long they think it will take them to complete the goal (within reason) and hold them to it.
Allowing the responsible person to have a say in a completion date will take away any misperception of an unreasonable timeline.
4. How? (steps to get it done)
Lastly, lay out all of the steps needed to get it done. No detail is too much, so create an action step for detail.
For instance, in goal example #1, there will be many required steps to increase volunteer participation.
Use the team to brainstorm each of those steps and put them in logical order.
Answering these questions will help to flush out the specific details of the goal.
Now let’s look at one of these goals and create an example goal document.
Now let’s take it a step further and create an employee (or volunteer) goal.
Managers and ministry heads should use the goal document as a guide throughout the year to reinforce deadlines outlined in the worksheet.
Employee goals should then be incorporated into an annual performance appraisal process.
Hopefully, these examples demonstrate how simplified the process can be.
The goal is for this to encourage you to take the time to create a goal document.
A church’s ability to write and accomplish organizational goals is critical to implementing a strategic plan and achieving ministry objectives.
Does your church write annual goals?
If you are a member of SCM you can login to your account here to access editable copies of these documents.
If you are not a member and would like access to editable copies of these documents, you can learn more here.