Generosity in tough times – Leadership Network – #2


Last year Chris Willard of Leadership Network www.leadnet.org came to the GENERIS associate’s meetings in Atlanta to talk about trends in generosity he had seen since the market went south in August of 2008.  Chris leads the Generous Churches Leadership Community http://bit.ly/aAdrFg for Leadership Network.  The Generous Churches Leadership Community combines leadership teams from innovative local churches intent on creating cultures of generosity and stewardship. These churches share similar bold goals for growing their ministries over a two-year period.

I came across the notes I took from Chris’ presentation and read them to see if his points still apply to the generosity culture of churches in the summer of 2010.  Not only do they apply currently, I feel they have always applied and will continue to apply for the unforseeable future.  Chris discussed 11 points during his presentation.  I posted earlier on the first 4 points he made.  Here are the next 4 with some notes.  I would love to hear your feedback.

  1. Leverage of the weekend.  The smartest leaders use the weekend to move, teach and inspire their people toward generosity.  I have used Jim Sheppard’s (CEO of GENERIS) comment about leveraging the weekend many times.  Jim says “The church has a significant advantage over all other non profits.  The church is in front of their people 52 times a year.  No other non-profit has that advantage.”  Do you utilize this fact to your advantage?
  2. Leverage media.  We live in an unbelievable time as it pertains to media and the multitude of ways to communicate with each other.  From video, websites, email, to social media we have an amazing amount of technology at our disposal.  Does your church have an intentional strategy as it pertains to media communication?  Generosity increases when people can hear and see the dollars they give changing people’s lives.
  3. Leverage data.  Again, we live in an amazing time with all of the technology at our disposal.  Data is often times overused and manipulated by companies to their advantage, but churches are notorious for not utilizing data at all.  What type of reports does your church generate weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annually?  How do you use the data from these reports?  Clear communication of giving data significantly increases the trust levels of your people. 
  4. People are generous to generous churches.  Plain and simple.  Every church is generous.  Some are intentional about it.  The ones who are more intentional about it tend to have an accelerated culture of generosity.  How do you give your people opportunities to be generous within the church and outside the church walls?

I’d love to hear your comments and questions.  Let me know your thoughts.

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