Good Word of Mouth Begins with a Great 1st Impression

In every Pizza with the Pastor gathering I have ever held for newcomers I would ask the same question, “What did you notice first when you came to our church?

Without fail I would hear repeatedly, “How warmly I was welcomed.”

I would convey that story often to our Hospitality, Ushering, Greeting, and Security (HUGS) Team […]

The Six Most Common Mistakes Pastors Make and What to do About Them

Over the years I’ve seen pastors make the same mistakes over and over. Every time I see these mistakes I can almost bet their church is declining. So I thought I would share with you the six most common mistakes I see pastors doing and what to do about it.

Mistake Number One: Not making […]

Is Christmas Becoming Like Easter?

It’s an exciting time to be a pastor.  It’s equally exciting to be a consultant.  You have to stay on your toes.  These times are changing from moment to moment.

For some time, the Effective Church Group has referenced Easter as Alumni Sunday, meaning that it’s a time when members who rarely attend worship may […]

First Week of the New Year

No matter what, most resolutions are broken before the second week of January rolls around.

Good intentions pave the road to yesterday’s results.

If you’re committed to changing things in your church, now’s the time to begin.

And it all begins with you, pastor.

Here are five-and-a-half practices that guarantee that the end of this year won’t look […]

Hospitality Begins with Signage

Think about times you’ve been embarrassed.  What was the context?  How did you feel?

It wasn’t good, was it?  Being embarrassed is a terrible feeling.  When I’m embarrassed, I’m tempted to turn around and run.  And that’s what I see from you too!

I hang out at a coffeehouse where there’s great service and lively conversation.  […]

5 Steps for Creating a Hospitality Culture

There is a fundamental flaw in the church of the early 21st century.  We have identified it quite clearly, but talk is inadequate.  As the old GI Joe commercial went, knowing is half the battle.  That’s great, but there’s another half to go.

What’s the issue?  Commercialization of the Church.  How did we go from […]

How Important is Christian Hospitality?

Perhaps you’ve noticed, our culture is often evaluating church in a negative fashion.  Church people are perceived as being hypocritical, looking very different in life expression than the claims from faith identity.  And, in a related way, the church message is received as irrelevant, out of touch with the reality of how faith intersects […]

Three Hard Choices Effective Leaders Make

Effective church leadership is the most glamourless, thankless, and frustrating job on the planet.

I make that emphatic statement based on two observations. First, I’m unaware of any other sector, profit or non-profit, that is seeing 85 percent of all operation centers facing serious decline – and the leaders of course are shouldered with the […]

Failure is Certain

I had a conversation with a pastor recently who shared that in his family of origin, “failure was not an option.” And so, he was a careful planner who sought to get “all the data” he could before making a decision. I was reminded of Ecclesiastes 12:12
Be warned, my son, of anything in addition […]