7 Practices of Effective Churches

Table of Contents for all 7 Practices --> download file -->


Module Overviews                                                            

Module 1:  Strategic Planning and Implementation

Introduction to Strategic Planning and Implementation

Module Objectives
Purpose of Strategic Planning Module
What is Strategic Planning?
The Strategic Planning Process
Elements of the Strategic Plan

Section 1:  Analyzing Your Existing Church

Defining the Primary Focus of Your Church
Determining Why You Exist as a Church
Determining Where Your Church Is Today

Section 2:  Understanding Your Community

Determine Your Social Context
Study Demographics
Define Attitudes, Values and Religious Preferences
Identify Needs Your Church Can Address
Understand Your Customer Profile

Section 3:  Defining Your Identity

Identifying “True North”
Determining Your Core Values
Writing Your Purpose Statement
Developing A Philosophy of Ministry
Designing Your Vision Statement
Creating Alignment

Section 4:  Identifying Goals and Objectives

Hearing God’s Voice
Define Critical Success Factors
Identify God’s Goals and Objectives

Section 5:  Following God’s Direction

Develop an Action Plan
Analyze Resources and Assign Tasks
Examine Your Motives
Communicating The Plan

Section 6:  Developing Your Organizational Plan

Selecting the Best Organizational Structure for Your Church
Creating Your Organizational Plan
Developing Your Organization Chart

Module 2:  Leading Change

Introduction to Change Management

Module Objectives
Purpose of Leading Change Module
The Nature of Change

Section 1:  Changing Your Church’s Culture

Reasons Churches Resist Change
Two Kinds of Change
Principles for Introducing New Ideas
Creating Successful Change

Section 2:  Leading Change

Leading Yourself Through Change
Tips for Managing Change
Leading Others Through Change
Tips for Keeping Church-Focused
Communicating With PurposeTips for Communicating During Change
Pioneering Change
Managing Your Stress
Important Facts About Stress
Symptoms of Ongoing Stress
Conditions Leading to Stress
Preventing Excessive Stress

Section 3:  Implementing Changes in Your Church

Identify Influencer
Gather A Dream Team
Assess Who’s On Your Leadership Team
Prepare Members for Change
Search for Incongruities
Create Solutions
Implement Systems
Nurture Ministries
Provide Accountability and Celebrations

Section 4:  Anticipating and Managing Conflict

Feed the Hand That Bites You
Classify Your Critics
Turn Critics Into Coaches
Anticipating Specific Criticisms
Limiting The Criticism You’ll Accept
Constructive Criticism As The Norm

Section 5:  Creating A Culture of Innovation

Continual Process Improvement
Determine Which Systems to Improve
Analyze the Existing Situations
Determine the Scope of the Problem
Develop Alternatives
Improve Your Systems
Create A Culture of Innovation


Module 3:  Organizing and Delegating

Introduction to Organizing and Delegating

Module Objectives

Section 1:  Personal Organization

Analyzing Your Current Use of Time
Creating Your Time Management System
Time Management Techniques

Section 2:  Growing Means Delegation

What is Delegation?
Qualities of a Good Delegatee
Barriers to Delegation
Deciding What to Delegate

Choosing the Right Delegatee

Keys to Effective Delegation Processes

Section 3:  Effective Problem Solving
What Is A Problem?

The Problem Solving Process
Choosing the Right Tools

Section 4:  Ministry Project Control Systems

Project Control Calendar

Module 4:  Maximizing Key Ministry Positions

Introduction to Maximizing Key Ministry Positions

Module Objectives
Purpose of Staff Systems
Staff Systems Overview
What Is A Staff Management System?
Looking Ahead
Considering “Calling”

Section 1:  Analysis of Need

Forecasting Your Staff Needs
Recognizing Hidden Investments
Conducting a Position Analysis
Developing Position Descriptions
Restructuring Your Staff
Developing Your Compensation System

Section 2:  The Hiring Process

Developing Your Recruiting System
Conducting the Initial Screening
Keys to Effective Interviewing
Evaluating Interview Results
Checking References

Making the Final Selection

Section 3:  New Staff Member Orientation

Overview of the Orientation Process
Getting Acquainted With the Church
Getting Acquainted With the Position

Section 4:  Performance Appraisal Systems

Setting Biblical Performance Standards
Creating an Effective Performance Evaluation Form
Evaluating Staff Performance
Conducting the Staff Performance Appraisal
Maintain Appropriate Appraisal Documentation
Dealing with Poor-Performance and Discipline Issues
Conducting Exit Interviews

Section 5:  Creating a Staff Handbook

Guidelines for Creating a Handbook
Typical Handbook Contents
Legal Considerations

Section 6:  Training

Determining Staff Training Needs
Designing and Developing a Staff Training Plan
Training Methods and Resources

Module 5:  Outreach and Assimilation

Introduction to Outreach and Assimilation

Module Objectives

Application From Strategic Planning Module

Section 1:  Marketing Is Not A Four-Letter Word

What is Marketing?

5 Myths About Church Marketing

Section 2:  The Missionary Mindset:  Who’s Your Target?

You Are A Cross-Cultural Missionary (Yes, You!)

What Missionaries Do

Defining Your Target

Section 3:  Bringing Method to Your Madness:  Marketing Plans Made Simple

Why You Need A Plan

The 5 Questions of a Marketing Plan

Section 4:  What’s the Big Idea?  Developing Creative Advertising

Step 1:  Get Real

Step 2:  Say What You Want To Say:  The Creative Brief

Step 3:  Get the Right Person For the Job (It’s Not You!)

Step 4:  Create the Ad:  15 Rules

Step 5:  Spread the Wealth:  Share Results Liberally

Section 5:  Getting the Message Out:  Choosing the Right Media Vehicle

What is a Media Vehicle?

Media Staples:  The Often Overlooked Basics

Beyond the Staples:  Proactive Communication With Your Community

Direct Mail Specifics

Section 6:  Don’t Be Shy:  Communicating Through Your Local Press

Why You Should Care About Your Local Press

Don’t Play “Hard-To-Get”

Developing An Effective Press Release

Interview Guidelines

Section 7:  Transitions:  Reaching People at Critical Life Changes

What Are Transition Points?

Examples of Key Transition Points to Consider

Section 8:  Getting It Done:  Budgets, Timelines and Research

A Few Words About Money

How Much Should You Expect to Spend?

A Direct Mail Project Example

A Radio Project Example

A Few Words About Time

A Sample of a Direct Mail Timeline From Start to Finish

A Sample of a Radio Timeline From Start to Finish

A Few Words About Gathering Information

Secondary Data:  Using Other People’s Research

Primary Data:  Doing Your Own Research

A Sample of an External Questionnaire

A Sample of an Internal Questionnaire

Section 9:  Assimilation Systems

Guest Path and Assimilation System

New Member Path and Assimilation System

Global Assimilation

Annual Evaluation

Module 6:  Maturing Your Church Financially

Introduction to Maturing Your Church Financially
Section 1:  Financial Forces Working Against You

The Rising Impact of Modernity

Loss of Urgency—“No Finish Lines”

Component Theology—“Pick and Choose Your Beliefs”

Pay Per View—“Fee For Services Rendered”

Loss of Heroes

Marginless Living—“Live It To The Edge”

Pervasive Materialism Message

Section 2:  Financial Forces Working For You

Results of Effective Ministry

Values Atmosphere

Stable Economy

Transfer of Wealth

New Generations to Imprint

Section 3:  Understanding Two Influencial Forces



Section 4:  Developing Your Annual Financial Plan

The Principle of “Win”

The Principle of “Lift”

The Principle of “Keep”

Dealing with Donor Fatigue

Section 5:  Designing Your Financial Organization

Finding Financial Talent in Your Church

Internal Control

Financial Complexity

Financial Planning

Zero Based Budgeting

Section 6:  Strategic Preparation for Stewardship

Stewardship Campaign Components

Leadership in Stewardship

Key Principles for Effective Stewardship

Partnership Strategies

Establishing Ministry Ownership

Segmenting the Donor Base

Module 7:  Developing Leaders and Teams

Introduction to Developing Leaders and Teams

Module Objectives

The Importance of Developing Leaders and Teams

Section 1:  What Makes An Effective Leader?

Leadership Defined

The Foundation of Leadership

The Difference Between Leaders and Managers

Creating Success

Section 2:  Developing Your Leadership Potential

Leadership Self-Appraisal

Leadership Approach

Become A Life-Long Learner

Section 3:  Applying Your Leadership Skills

Leader Expectations

Exceeding Expectations

The Cost of Excellence

Understanding Leader Needs

Leader Involvement

Section 4:  Creating A Motivational Environment

Reward Based Motivation

Building a Motivational Environment

Section 5:  Developing Leaders
Developing for Improved Performance

Identifying and Developing Potential Leaders

Section 6:  Developing Effective Listening Skills

Building Reflective Listening Skills

Listening and Problem-Solving

Removing Communication Barriers

Understanding Nonverbal Communication

Providing Communication Leadership in Group Settings

Section 7:  Resolving Conflict and Dealing With Difficult Behavior
Resolving Conflict Between Others

Resolving Personal Conflict

Disciplinary Actions Resulting From Difficult Behavior

Dealing With Difficult People

Section 8:  Win-Win Negotiating

Separating Personalities From Issues

Discovering the Needs of the Other Party

Steps for Negotiating

Section 9:  It’s A Team Thing

What Is A Team?

Why Teams?

The Obsolescence of Hierarchy

Team Empowerment

Advantages of Teams

Setting Up and Supporting Your Teams

Meetings:  Putting Teams To Work