Browse
4 Ways to Eliminate Culture Killers

4 Ways to Eliminate Culture Killers

Posted September 17, 2015 by Jerod Clark

You’ve likely heard a lot about the importance of church culture. It’s the mix of behaviors, beliefs and values that make your organization unique. Culture is shared assumptions that people can rally around for decision-making and personal interaction. In my opinion, being intentional about developing your culture makes for stronger, unified and healthy church. Conversely, a lack of strong culture creates a ho-hum feeling in your congregation. There’s no guidepost for staff and attenders to become passionate about the work they’re doing.

As communicators, creatives and leaders, it’s your job to not only help develop and foster a healthy culture, but to effectively communicate it and its importance to your congregation.

At the 2015 Circles Conference, Larry Hubatka, Creative Director at Elevation Church, identified four ways to overcome killers of culture.

 

1. Make Everyone an Owner

There is a difference between a renter and an owner in your church. Renters can kill your culture the quickest because they can leave at any moment. They’re not invested in the long-term well-being of the church. 

People become owners when they can see how the work their doing, either as staff, volunteers or members, is making a difference. You become an owner when you’re passionate about your work. Owners are the people with whom you build your church.

 

2. Lose Lazy Language

The words we use to cast vision and communicate have power. Creative language stirs emotion. Standard, clichéd language doesn’t have a purpose, solve a problem or move a mission. A well-crafted, missional message makes sure ideas stay synced inside one narrative. For example, at Elevation Church, staff refer to visitors as VIPs instead of first time guests. It’s not meant to be a term that’s splashed around as marketing, but language that sets the tone for how new folks should be viewed and treated.

 

3. Work with Peoples’ Rhythms

Think about the typical year at your church. There are natural flows. It gets busier with more people coming through at the beginning of the year (thank you, New Year resolutions), Easter and Christmas (big holidays) and the fall (people getting back into routines). While those are great times of opportunity in the life of your church, it’s a crazy time for staff. A healthy culture builds in time to renew and refresh around these rhythms. It’s not enough to talk about work-life balance; you should intentionally integrate strategies to ensure your staff—paid and volunteer—can live in balance. Day-to-day, how do your work and home lives integrate to create a personal rhythm for success? If you’re a manager, how are you understanding and working with your people’s productive rhythms?

 

4. Never Settle on People

Don’t hire people who don’t align with your values. This is worth repeating: Only hire people who clearly align with your values. The same is true when putting key volunteers into positions with more responsibility and influence. People who aren’t in line with your vision or work culture will be a toxic force limiting your success. Why? People enjoy working with people they like who share a common goal. Hiring just to fill a position will burn you every time. While it’s good not to settle, you also can’t get stuck looking for unrealistic people who don’t exist. Your wish list of talents for a position might be longer than any human could reasonably achieve. Consider redefining your search so that you find someone with the right culture and values set, who is willing and eager to receive training for their new position.

Filed under: Branding, Mission and Vision, Communications, Leadership

About the Author

Jerod Clark

Jerod joined ReFrame Media in 2007 and built Church Juice from scratch. He poured all his passion for branding, marketing, and messaging into the ministry, publishing e-books, blog posts, and speaking at conferences to help churches energize their communications. He also served as ReFrame’s in-house graphic designer. Before beginning his work at Church Juice, Jerod was a local TV news reporter. In 2016, Jerod stepped away from the ministry to pursue interests in marketing and communications on new horizons.

Don't miss a post

Join our email list

Comments (0)

Leave a Comment

Share your thoughts about this blog post with us.
All fields are required.

Recent Posts

Top 5 for 2018
Top 5 for 2018
0

Posted December 13, 2018 by Bryan Haley

2018 is coming to a close, but before we jump into the new year, we want to take a look back at some of this year's most popular articles.
How Much Time Is Enough Time? Best Practices for Church Event Timelines
How Much Time Is Enough Time? Best Practices for Church Event Timelines
2

Posted December 11, 2018 by Jeanette Yates

Churches often underestimate the amount of time needed to share information about, or promote events and services. Doing this can not only frustrate your team but hinder volunteers and attendee participation. Here’s how to make sure your communications are timely and effective.
How to Run an Effective Team Planning Meeting
How to Run an Effective Team Planning Meeting
0

Posted December 6, 2018 by Carrie Evans

A yearly planning meeting can help your team align, have fun together, invigorate your vision, develop a communications plan, and break down ministry silos.
Getting Strategic With Your Church Blog
Getting Strategic With Your Church Blog
1

Posted December 4, 2018 by Joe Gallant

I get asked, “Should we have a blog on our church website?” My usual answer is a helpful “maybe!” Let’s explore some of the common pitfalls, and some helpful strategies for making the most of a church blog.
Why Branding?
Why Branding?
0

Posted November 30, 2018 by Tyler Rominger

A good brand (and brand strategy) can bring a sense of purpose and focus to an otherwise rudderless operation.
Brand Guide Examples
Brand Guide Examples
0

Posted November 22, 2018 by Bryan Haley

Here are some great examples of brand guides. Use these examples as inspiration as you develop your own guide.
Who Are You?
Who Are You?
0

Posted November 20, 2018 by Joe Gallant

What does it mean to brand your church in the digital age? Here are some helpful tips on creating and applying a brand across multiple formats. Hint: it’s about more than a logo!
Logos Don’t Have To Be Literal
Logos Don’t Have To Be Literal
3

Posted November 15, 2018 by Jerod Clark

A great logo for your church is one that reflects who you are; it doesn't necessarily need to be literal.
Branding is Not a Bad Word
Branding is Not a Bad Word
1

Posted November 13, 2018 by Chris Hunt

Brand isn’t a bad word and your church can make good use of branding principles. Good branding is authentic and consistent. It’s easy to overthink your brand, so keep it simple.
Why Your Church Needs a Brand
Why Your Church Needs a Brand
0

Posted November 6, 2018 by Robert Carnes

Branding can feel like a bad thing within the church. In reality, that’s not the case. It’s not in the Bible so why do we need to talk about it? How we represent ourselves can impact who we’re able to build relationships with.