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If you’ve ever looked down at a to-do list of 5, 7 or 10 tasks and felt that sinking feeling of “how am I ever going to accomplish all this?”, you know that numbers can be daunting. On the other hand, if that list just has one task—even if it’s a big one—it feels more doable simply because it stands alone.

That’s the power of one. When it comes to taking steps toward improving your ministry, harnessing “the power of one” is an important strategy to keep you and your staff from feeling overwhelmed. The idea is simple: Rather than focus on accomplishing many things at once, instead focus on one key goal and invest all your collective energy into making it happen.

3 Steps to Help Determine Your Church’s One Big Goal

“What’s ONE thing you would change about this church and why?”

This is the key question you want to ask because it gets people really focusing on one thing—not three or five—but one. It makes them think about their top priority. Asking a specific question like this will get you very specific answers.

  1. Seek feedback

Who should you ask this question to? Everyone involved with the church. That includes both all staff and congregation members. You want as much data as possible in order to make the most informed decision.

  1. Analyze and overlay results

Once you have all your answers to the question above (whether collected through interviews or surveys), take your results and look for the top trends. What are the most common answers? What are the most frequently mentioned concerns?

  1. Decide where to focus

Use the data you’ve collected to determine the most important thing you can do to improve your church and the wellbeing of its members. Then make sure you clearly communicate that goal with all staff and congregation members.   

Examples of things your church might want to improve could include:

  • Increasing generosity overall
  • Finding people who are falling through the cracks before they fully disengage from the church
  • Increasing the number of families that are giving on a monthly basis (recurring giving)
  • Focusing on church growth (population)
  • Making it easier for guests to become members (guest follow-up and assimilation process)
  • Improving the facility appearance and/or function

Once You Ask, Be Prepared to Act

If you’re going to ask a one-thing question, it’s really important you have a plan of action. Even if your ultimate action isn’t focused where someone wanted you to, at least they can see where the ministry is heading (the heart of your church) and that you are taking their feedback into account. 

Discover more ways your church can use feedback from members to transform your ministry—download “The Field Guide for Data-Driven Ministry” now.


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