Linking Details to Strategy
Once purposeful strategies and specific action plans to accomplish those strategies have been created, you’re ready to add further detail. You’re finally ready to do what most churches do first—calendar and budget.
Calendar and budget fall last in the process because they should be completely dependent on what your church is called to do (vision), who you’re called to reach (outreach focus) and how God has called you to reach them (strategies and action plans).
Laying down calendar and budget first puts the cart before the horse and the church becomes a slave to programming, events, money and the calendar. It’s a common problem, but it’s a correctable one. It’s far more effective to tie the details to an overall plan for accomplishing your global objective and vision. So whenever you start a calendaring or budgeting process, ask yourself the question: What overall church or community strategy is being fed by the event or the money?
A Timeline for Strategic Events
A time & task chart maps out your ministry action plan over a period of time. In most situations, it makes sense to do this for a 12-month period. With written strategies and action plans in hand, begin laying out the details on a chart. Work through any date and time conflicts on the chart and think carefully about ministry and event spacing.
Work through the first year of your ministry action plan on one time & task chart. Strategize and brainstorm ministry initiatives with a view towards purpose and outcomes. Find some sample formats here:
Complete a time & task chart as a tool to map out your first-year strategic plan. Remember that charting out dates and details comes at the end of the ministry action plans process.