Regaining Simplicity – An Exercise in Trimming the Fat from Your Ministry Systems and Processes
Sometimes the greatest struggle we face as ministry leaders, is not the envisioning of the next great idea, being the architect of some new high impact outreach or planning the next big event. More times than not we find ourselves wrestling with the daily demand to constantly evaluate and refine the things that are currently in place and functioning in the life of our ministry context. There is an ever-present demand to keep things simple and prevent chaos. The unspoken rule seems to be, “if simplicity is not often pursued, complexity is often found”.
As a consequence, in any organizational setting, what used to be a simple and streamlined well oiled machine can easily become a bloated and sluggish snail of inefficiency due to an unintended lack of attention.
To prevent sluggishness and bloating within your organization, be proactive and gather your team around the following conversation and exercise.
1. As a ministry team talk about the benefits of streamlining the current systems that exist in the ministry.
2. Next, on a sheet of paper or whiteboard, list all the known and functioning systems, processes and ministries that are currently in place and active.
3. Go around to each team member and ask the following:
- As they look at each of these items listed, do they see any that have become over-complicated?
- Are there hurdles in place in the current structure that prevent productivity or a desired outcome?
- Are there any common threads of “bulkiness or bloatedness” across multiple ministry areas?
- How can we simplify this system or process to its most efficient form?
- Where are we spending time, energy and resources that we could continue to be healthy without?
- If we could build this system all over again from the ground up, how would we improve it?
4. As areas of improvement are identified be sure to discuss solutions and assign action items with deadlines to the appropriate team members.
5. Next, determine as a team how often it may be productive to reevaluate and revisit this process of “simplifying the structure” and set a date to come back and refine again.
By making this a regular part of your ministry evaluations, specifically focusing on simplification, you will increase the overall positive response to your ministry efforts.
How often do you focus on simplifying your world ?