Executive Pastor Online Blog

This is my personal blog. I regularly write about church leadership and infrastructure development, including specifics on leadership techniques and the details of implementing systems, processes, and methods that enable the church to succeed.

Where Do I Start?

infrastructure leadership volunteers Nov 16, 2023
Where do I Start?

Building a Strong Infrastructure in your Church is a Daunting Task, and Deciding Where to Begin Can be the Most Difficult Part

Especially for a church leader with very little staff and a desire to grow, developing infrastructure can be a daunting task. The question is, Where do I start?

Once a church leader is convinced that developing infrastructure is fundamentally important to growth, the next step is getting it done. Here is where the real work begins. Also, many in church leadership roles are not gifted such that they’re excited about documenting processes, writing procedures, or establishing and documenting policies. In fact, they pretty much hate that kind of stuff!

So, the first order of business in the infrastructure development effort is finding a gifted leader who understands how to get it done or at least get it started. In most churches, that means identifying a leader and nurturing a relationship with them, eventually plugging them into serving as a process improvement volunteer. (See my post on Leadership Evangelism)

The next step is to identify what I call “pain points.” What recurring activity or area of ministry is causing you the most pain? What keeps you up at night? In every church, something isn’t going the way you want. These issues or “processes needing improvement” should be listed and prioritized. From there, you work on the highest priority first and continue down the list. Keep the list active by adding items as they come up and re-prioritize if needed. And then continue to work on the highest priority first.

A simple example came from many years ago when the church I served saw an upward trend in the number of requests for a pastor to perform a wedding. Responding to the requests and making decisions about which we would say “yes” to and which we would say “no” to became a real “pain.” Also, we recognized that we needed to decide what we would require from a couple asking one of our pastors to do their ceremony. What did we do? We met as a team, discussed how we wanted to proceed, and wrote a Wedding Operating Procedure.

After that, weddings were no longer a pain. A potential couple knows and understands how to submit a request and what's required of them to have one of the staff pastors perform their ceremony. This is a simple example, but I think it’s good.


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