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Generate desires to see churches renewed and strengthened. Through the Generate Renewal Grant, churches can work with experienced consultants to help fuel the health of their church ministries. The following article from one of Generate’s partnering consultants has tips that can help strengthen every church.

By The Unstuck Group

We’ve worked with churches that did the hard work of assessing their ministry’s health, clarifying vision, and identifying a strategy for leading change. But something still felt off.

Bubbling below the surface was a feeling something like this: “We’ve tried to make changes before, but we never see them through. This looks great on paper, but it really isn’t worth the effort.”

There’s a tendency for churches to struggle with executing plans beyond the weekend service. That’s probably obvious to you as a church leader.

Zoomed out, we can write it off as a time issue: Sunday is always coming. Turning out an excellent live event weekly is a unique challenge most organizations don’t face, but that’s not the only reason our teams stall out.

Zoomed in, we often see another issue: Most church staff teams don’t know how to execute a plan. The team members haven’t been trained to do that.

Leaders spend more time talking about change than making it. “Opportunities” are constantly chased, leading to distraction and burnout. Inspiring meetings are forgotten faster than the whiteboard can be erased. Team members’ belief in the future wanes as each year passes with little movement.

So how can you ensure your strategic plan gets traction? Here are five steps that can help you find that missing link:

  1. Designate a champion. Someone must protect your church’s strategic plan and constantly push it. A great champion is a systematic leader who can engage others and break down big projects into small steps. It’s best when this person does not have heavy weekend responsibilities that get in the way of long-term planning.
  2. Clarify how the plan gets changed. You can be sure of one thing when you develop a strategic plan: it’s going to change. Your church and community are dynamic environments full of opportunities and challenges you could never see coming. In those moments, people will wonder how to respond.
  3. Define responsibilities and authorities. Seasons of change often take place beyond the confines of an organizational chart. As you delegate responsibilities, make sure everyone in the organization understands who owns which components.
  4. Constantly clarify priorities. With such a high number of things your team could focus on, your team needs constant reminders that your church’s strategic plan takes priority.
  5. Give it time. Every strategic plan will take time to yield results.

In episode 57 of The Unstuck Church Podcast, Tony Morgan and Amy Anderson from The Unstuck Group’s team talk about helping churches learn to execute more effectively. Listen to “Become a Church That Gets Stuff Done.”

The Unstuck Group helps leaders grow healthy churches by guiding them through experiences that focus vision, strategy, and action. Its core services include ministry health assessments, strategic planning, and staffing and structure reviews.