Effective Planning for Church and Non-Profit Leaders
In my second life I run an online marketing company for small businesses called Eureka Online Marketing. I began this joint venture with a friend to create another income stream when I stepped out of the world of full-time, paid ministry and into the world of contract consultant work. One of the resources I take in on a regular basis is John Jantsch’s Duct Tape Marketing Blog. Its a fantastic resource for any small business marketer or a small business owner trying a “do it yourself” approach to marketing.
Why am I writing about this here?
The blog post I received in my inbox today, “Effective Planning Is About What to Leave Out”, caught my eye and, I believe, has great application for leaders of any organization (including churches and non-profits). You can read the entire post by clicking on the title. Its well worth it and a quick read. Here’s a quick except that really sums the article up:
There’s always more to do than you can possibly get done and what happens all too often is that we give a little attention to a lot of things and effectively water down what should be our priorities.
When we plan the right way, we look long and hard at what makes us money and (hopefully) find ways to focus on doing more of that better, rather than thinking up more of something to divert our attention.
My experience is that most organizations do very little in the way of strategic planning, if any at all. And as John suggests in this post, much of what is done in the name of strategic planning is focused on finding more and newer things to do rather than streamlining what is already being done to focus more on core issues and offerings. This can lead to misplaced priorities, overworked staff, fragmented allocation of resources, and, over time, mission drift.
As the New Year approaches, now is a great time to look seriously at your planning process (or lack of one). When you look at what your team or organization is doing strategically, do you end up trying to do more things, or do you have an eye toward being laser-focused and increasing effectiveness? What do you need to leave out in 2012 in order to plan for effectively and increase your impact as an organization?
I’d love to hear your thoughts.