by Bob Whitesel, D.Min., Ph.D., 11/30/15.
Our sharing of the Good News should be founded upon an authentic concern for meeting the needs of those who don’t yet have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
The Most Overlooked Part of our Strategies
A need-meeting foundation is often the most often overlooked aspect of our outreach strategies But it is central to it, for remember it is by reaching out and meeting their needs that we demonstrate God’s love, grace and offer to be reconciled.
But, most church leaders tell me then don’t know how to assess needs in their community and thus they just guess. But, this is an extremely ineffective planning tool for it results in a lot of ministry failures with resultant burnout of the volunteers who worked so tirelessly only to discover the strategy (not their efforts) was misplaced.
A Leadership Exercise
To help colleagues, clients and students find tools for need assessment, they undertake the following leadership exercise.,
Each person conducts an online search and finds one tool that can assess the needs of the unchurched. (And give us a link so we can check it out too.) Then each person writes four paragraphs:
Each person looks at the outreach process (i.e. marketing) and tells why assessing needs should be Step 1 in your four step outreach (i.e. marketing) strategy. Download this presentation from The Church Leader’s MBA: What Business School Instructors Wish Church Leaders Knew About Management (Ohio Christian University): HANDOUT ©BobWhitesel MARKETING
Paragraphs 2, 3 & 4:
- Each leader shares a one paragraph overview of the tool’s strengths
- Then each leaders shares a one paragraph overview of the tool’s weaknesses.
- Finally, each leader shares a one paragraph overview of how they could implement this tool in their ministry.
This exercise will not only help you discover innovative need-assessment tools for your ministry, but it will also make you more attune to the needs of your community.
So, in this leadership exercise, do a little sleuthing and share with others the best and brightest ideas for discovering the needs of those who haven’t yet been reconciled to our heavenly Father.