Culture Creation always starts at the top. And it generally ends at the top because most leaders aren’t consistent and the chief leader doesn’t have the backbone to actually hold those leaders accountable, so the culture doesn’t change. Ultimately, this is why so few churches turn back from decline … because the prevailing culture that facilitated the decline isn’t overcome at the topmost levels, and therefore never takes hold in the congregation.

  • The pastor and the staff must live, breathe, model, and teach the culture change.
  • The pastor must hold the staff accountable for living, breathing, modeling, and teaching the cultural change (and correcting or removing them if they don’t or won’t).
  • The board (session, vestry, council) must support, model, and teach the culture change.
  • The pastor, staff, and the board itself must hold each individual board member accountable for supporting, modeling, and teaching the cultural change (and correcting or removing them if they don’t or won’t).

And finally, any leader that exudes negativity about the newly budding culture must be removed from leadership and if they have significant influence, must be isolated. If a congregation entertains negativity, the cultural change won’t happen – and if a declining church’s culture doesn’t change …