Churches that want a successful capital campaign need to understand that the simple campaign is the best campaign. This is revolutionary to many and outright heresy to many in the stewardship industry. Yet we live in a day that celebrates simplicity. For far too long we have made raising funds for capital projects too hard. We have been focusing upon the wrong things. While society has changed too many stewardship firms act like it is still 1980. What worked then is not going to work now.
The old way of doing a capital campaign was driven largely by constructing multiple teams to do various tasks. The thinking was that the more people were involved in a campaign the more money you would raise. That has never been proven with any study of campaigns. It simply was the premise that firms operated from. That premise is not wrong in and of itself. People do need to “get involved.” However involvement on some team may or may not generate success.
One reason why is that most “teams,” constructed for a capital campaign are meaningless and do busy work. This is especially true if your commitment day is not a banquet or at a special venue. Every commitment day we hold is always done during the weekend worship. You have standing existing teams in place to pull that off. Why would you need additional teams? You don’t. Yet most firms are still doing campaigns like they always did.
Society has changed and there are two commodities that people value, time and money. Your members are gone nearly every night of the week with some activity. From church, to school to sports they literally are gone almost every night. Do you really think they will be excited about attending a team meeting to discuss how to write press releases about your campaign for the paper? I am not making that up one of my competitors has a team that does that! Don’t waste your member’s time.
We have found that what generates commitments to any capital campaign is a vision that is clear, concise and most of all compelling. This is the foundation. We spend the bulk of our time here because as we say, you never have to recover from a good start. If your vision does not connect with your people no amount of team activity will matter.
We have found that the best way to drive this vision into the hearts of members is to communicate it where they are. Instead of creating teams we look for already existing structures whereby we can piggy back the campaign vision and message on. For instance I once worked with a large church that had over 180 small groups. We utilized those groups to get the information out and to run our prayer strategy through. If you have a prayer team already why create a new one? This is one way to make the campaign much simpler in design and process. We are not averse to forming teams if there is a need. However, most churches are already organized in a way that can make the campaign simple and effective. You just need help putting the pieces together.
What are the merits of a simple campaign? Here are some of the merits of The Simple Campaign…
- You can pull off a capital campaign in far less time.
- You can spend more time working on communicating your message.
- Your existing teams, small groups, Sunday School classes will be strengthened.
- Your members will have one less meeting to attend and so will you!
- You won’t have to pay as much for a firm to help you.
- You will raise just as much as if you held an old fashioned campaign.
The Charis Group is the leader in revolutionizing the design and implementation of capital campaigns to fit the 21st century we live in! Call us today and we can show you how to hold an effective and simple capital stewardship campaign.
Mark Brooks – The Stewardship Coach