5 Essential Mid-Year Trends Church Leaders Must be Tracking

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Get out your pencil and a ruler.

It’s time to examine your trend lines.

We are midway through the calendar year, and that means you need to check in on a few vital trends and indicators in your church.

At the six month mark there is still time to take corrective measures. You can still finish 2013 with all the essential lines pointing up and to the right.

The question is, what are those essential trend lines you should be checking?

Well, let’s assume you are already on top of “the big 3”: Attendance, finances and conversions/baptisms. Hopefully you are getting these reports monthly, if not weekly.

At the midway point of the year, the trend lines you need to be watching do not necessarily lend themselves to clean metrics.

Some of these trend lines are discerned more by paying attention to key insiders or to your own leadership instincts. But you need to have a sense as to where these are pointing.

For each of the following, draw out a trend line starting from January 1st and extending through June 30th and beyond.

1.   The ‘volunteer engagement’ trend

Since January 1st, have volunteers tended to become more, or less, engaged with your church? Is recruitment getting harder or easier?

2.   The ‘stakeholder commitment’ trend

From board members to donors, is their commitment to the vision of the church increasing or decreasing? You shouldn’t have to guess.

3.   The ‘staff performance’ trend

Overall, which way is staff performance heading?

4.   The ‘community impact’ trend

Since January 1st has the level of impact your church has been making in the community been on the rise, or on the decline?

5.   The ‘spiritual transformation’ trend

Has your congregation’s hunger for scripture, prayer, worship, and so on, been growing, or tapering off?

After you’ve examined the trends, you need to ask:

“What will we do about it?”

You see, on June 30th, there’s still plenty of time to make a mid-course correction. Each of these trends can finish pointing up and to the right.

So,  get out your pencil and ruler.

And get tracking.

What other trends do you check midway through the year?


the author

Scott Cochrane

Lifelong learner, practitioner and coach of leadership, across more than 50 countries. Follower of Jesus, husband of Nora, grateful parent and grandparent.

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