Leaders in religious organizations are often concerned about their church's growth or how well it functions. If you identify a problem area that you don't know how to handle, it may be time to call a professional. Church consultants can analyze the situation and give you objective, expert advice on how to move forward.
Why Do You Need a Consultant?
The wisdom of knowing when to ask for outside help is a fundamental part of making lasting change. You are more likely to be successful if you choose a consultant who specializes in the type of difficulty you're trying to overcome. There are many different types of church consultants:
You may recognize that there are many symptoms that both stem from and contribute to the problem, but you should try to narrow your focus before you begin your search. Choosing the right consultant for your church starts with pinpointing the reason you want to hire an outside advisor in the first place.
One of the most common concerns among church leaders is whether their churches are growing as much as they should be. They don't want to manipulate people into coming, but they genuinely desire to serve the community and need bigger numbers to do it. If this interests you, a growth consultant can help you identify your niche and teach you how to communicate it to the surrounding neighborhoods.
Alternatively, you may know exactly what you need to do to increase your membership but are overwhelmed by the tasks that are already on your plate. You may not be sure you can handle the extra workload that would inevitably come with a larger congregation. A consultant can help you delegate tasks and streamline your workflow so that growth looks like a more reasonable prospect.
As a pastor or lay leader, you may find it difficult to motivate people to volunteer for the many services the church offers. Ideally, people join churches because they want to make a positive difference in their city, but it's not unusual to find a small percentage of the members doing the majority of the work. A leadership consultant can teach you how to identify people's strengths and encourage them to use their talents for the good of the faith community. Your consultant may also be able to help you identify the programs that need to be discontinued simply because no one is interested enough to take them on.
Incorporating new technologies into your church operations can seem like a daunting task. If you want to attract and retain the younger generations that keep your church vibrant and innovative, though, you need to be willing to embrace new ideas. A technology consultant can make your services more modern simply by upgrading your sound or satellite equipment and training your team on how to use it.
Another important upgrade to consider is accessibility. There are advances in technologies that aid those with sensory or mobility challenges, and it's important for the church to make sure people with such needs are included in the services.
Honesty and transparency are two of the most important values a church can hold. If you feel like your faith community has lost sight of its mission, look for consultants who specialize in accountability. They can help you review your mission and vision statements, revise them if necessary, and analyze your church's actions and messages to make sure that you are staying true to who you are called to be.
Choosing the right church consultant begins with identifying the specific type of guidance you need. Once you find someone who specializes in overcoming the issues you're encountering, you may be delighted to discover how much help he or she has to offer.