If you were given $1000 today that you had to spend by midnight, what would you do with the money?
I did just that as a casual experiment on Facebook asking my friends “If you were given $1000 today that you had to spend by midnight, what would you do with the money?” recently.
ALL DIFFERENT OUTCOMES
I got a wide variety of answers from fix up my car, pay my daughter’s rent for a month, give it to a soup kitchen, pay of personal debt or book a weekend getaway for my family. The vast variety of answers given an identical situation proves that there is something behind the scenes weighing in on our personal decisions.
NOT ON THE SAME PAGE
Ever have that “one person” at your church who just doesn’t get it? Maybe they are always asking for the music to be turned down or they regularly ask new visitors to get out of ‘their seat’ or hand you a scrap paper before service with some details they want you to announce about their potluck. The funny thing is, if you ask that person, they would probably say you’re the one who just doesn’t get it.
INTERNAL VALUES COMPETE
The “behind the scenes” factor is that we all have a unique set of values, and every decision we make is weighed against our personal values; What you ate for dinner, how you dressed this morning, what you’ll do this weekend (and how you would spend $1000 before midnight) are all decisions you made based on something you value. It’s virtually impossible to make a decision – to choose one thing over other options – without factoring in which you value more.
CAN’T WE JUST ALL GET ALONG?
The challenge is that our church is made up of many individuals, each with their own set of values, so when a decision needs to be made, our personal values kick in and when two people are weighing decisions with their unique individual values, we get two different ways to make a decision.
THERE IS A WAY
BUT, there is a way to get everyone on the same page in decision making; get everyone on the same page with your church’s core values.
Your core values are your church’s branding – they’re the things you want people to recognize when they experience your church and what you want people to say about your church after they experience you.
When we believe in the organization and the values of the organization are clear, then we can allow those values to hold more prominence when representing the organization.
CORE VALUES BECOME A CLEAR GUIDE
Are we going to launch a new campus in the North end of the city or the South end of the city? Personally, I might have an opinion (like choosing whichever is closest to my house), but if one of our core values is impacting government for example, and the government buildings are in the North end of the city, that value would help guide our decision.
Am I going to insist that a new person gets out of my favorite seat? Personally, I may want to, but if our church’s core value is being the friendliest place in town, then instead of asking that person to move, I could shake their hand, welcome them and thank them for joining us.
If we have $1000 in our budget, and we have a core value community service, then we may choose to spend that money by taking food to a shelter or buying basketballs and handing them out at local playgrounds or helping to build a church oversees instead of repainting and carpeting our foyer or buying a new
NOW EVERYONE IS ON THE SAME PAGE
Would you like the people in your church to make consistent decisions on behalf of your organization, within your volunteer teams and in their personal conduct while representing your church?
Articulate your core values, share why they’re important and drive them deep into the organization by filtering every decision and discussion through them.
QUESTION: Do you believe core values can do all that?
Born and raised in Canada, Adam McLaughlin now lives in Florida overseeing Marketing and Communications at Life Church in Fort Myers and blogs at AdamMcLaughlin.net helping communicators inform their churches and impact their communities