What is the point of Strategic Planning for your ministry?
Church ministry is intense and time-consuming, both for staff and volunteer leaders. It often takes everything we have just to keep up with the routine – preaching, stewardship, leading volunteers, managing conflict, caring, and ministering to families. Every now and then at a conference or meeting leaders will hear fragments of phrases like ‘long-range planning’, ‘vision’, ‘strategic planning’, and we think ‘That stuff is great, but we are neck deep and treading water just keeping up with the day to day.'
The fact is that thoughtful planning - strategic planning – helps us in the areas where we are most burdened – time management, priorities, responsibilities, and leadership challenges. Strategic planning may well be the most crucial step in maximizing the effectiveness of your ministry.
The most important thing to know about strategic planning is that it is a process, not a project or a product. There is often more value in the strategic planning process than in the end result. Strategic planning is an often-renewable exchange of information, ideas, dreams, hopes, and vision that will keep your ministry sharp, passionate, and focused.
You could attempt to undertake this planning effort on your own. I wouldn't recommend it. I wrote about why that is the case in another blog post. As the most important aspect of strategic planning is the process, there is value in having someone facilitate your process. My experience facilitating these conversations with ministries tells me that the ideas, honest discussion, and clarity that is gained are well worth the resources put into the effort.
How would your ministry benefit from a static planning process?
Do you think it is worth the time and effort?
Let me know!
There is often more value in the strategic planning process than in the end result.