Odds are, you have at least some goals set for your church. They may be as vague as boosting membership or as lofty as getting 1,000 new followers on Facebook in a month.
The problem is many churches and even individuals often give up on their goals quickly. Why? They’re impossible or too general to ever be accomplished.
By setting practical goals, it’s much easier for your church to achieve the growth you want and stick to your goals for the long-term.
Understanding Practical Goals
Practical goals are different than general goals. On the surface, they both mean you set goals you want to accomplish. However, general goals are hard to achieve. For instance, a general goal might be “I want to boost membership.” It’s a wonderful goal, but how will you measure success? If you get one new member, did you achieve your goal? Without any clear finish line, it’s difficult to know if you’re successful. Plus, there’s no plan to get there.
Setting general goals is a common mistake that leads to failure and disappointment. Practical goals are far more concrete. Many people refer to them as SMART goals, which stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-Based.
The object is to set goals that are relevant to your church, but are attainable within a set time frame. Obviously, attaining them takes work, but it is possible.
The most important part of setting practical goals is to think realistically. For instance, no matter how hard a small church might try, they’re not going to get 100 new members within a week. It might be possible over six months, but not in just seven days.
By setting a realistic goal, you’re more likely to keep working hard. After all, you don’t feel overwhelmed from day one.
Avoid The Inevitable Let Down
Setting practical goals also helps you avoid the inevitable let down when you’re not successful. Think about how many people say they’re going to lose weight every January. By February, most of those people have given up. Why?
They either set unattainable goals or they have no plans for how to achieve the goal. This means they give their all for several weeks only to realize they have no chance of being successful. Sadly, this turns them off from goal setting completely. Don’t let this happen to your church.
No Church Grows Overnight
One of the main goals of a church is growth. Whether that means membership, attendance or more volunteers, growth is always on a church’s to-do list. However, it’s important to remember that no church grows overnight. Setting goals that try to make your church go from small to a massive multi-site church in a year or less is just going to leave you feeling disappointed. It’ll also make your members disappointed to, which could lead to your church losing members.
Practical Goals To Set
Setting practical goals is a multi-step process. Before you set anything concrete for your church, make sure you follow these steps:
- Define the goal according to the SMART criteria
- List solid steps for achieving each goal
- Ensure the goals are what’s best for your church
- Limit how many goals you work towards at a time to avoid getting overwhelmed
If you’re not sure where to start with your practical goals, here are some common goals to help your church grow:
- Build an engaging church website
- Choose at least two social media channels to interact with members
- Increase volunteers
- Start a church blog
- Get involved in the community more
- Create a mix of traditional and modern services
- Build a more engaging church based on member feedback
Obviously, you don’t have to stop there. Your goals should always be relevant to what your church needs at the time. They can be as simple as getting more members to join the choir. Big or small, practical goals always help you find success as long as you’re willing to stick to them.
Is a digital presence one of your church’s practical goals? Contact us today to learn more about our church website services.