I ran across this little article that got me thinking and I hope it will get you thinking about our church too.
1. A church is not defined as its pastor, staff and buildings. That’s how we define companies – as its executives, employees and assets. Instead, in a church, the members and attenders ARE the church.
2. Who an organization seeks to attract and retain and where it invests the bulk of its time, resources and dollars define who it considers to be its “customer”.
3. Studies show that nearly all churches today invest the vast majority of their time, resources and dollars on organizational management, facilities, programs, services and marketing to attract and retain members and attenders.
If you agree with those assumptions, the following must be true:
4. According to our definition, churches today treat congregants as their primary “customer”.
5. However, if members ARE the Church, they CANNOT also be the Church’s “customer”.
6. Therefore, churches are investing the vast majority of their time, resources and dollars in the wrong “customer”.
8. Any organization that is not focused on its “customers” or focused on the wrong “customers” is unlikely to succeed.
9. Customers are always outside of, not internal to, an organization. Because the Church
today treats “insiders” (members, who ARE the Church) as its “customer”, the Church is by definition internally focused. Internally-focused entities of any kind rarely grow.
10. Because churches treat congregants as “customers” they tend to cater to them and hesitate to challenge them (to be discipled, to disciple, and to serve the Church’s true, intended “customer”) for fear of losing them to a church down the road (who won’t challenge them).
11. As a result, churchgoers have adopted a consumer mentality. As evidence, most churches growing today are those who can afford to provide better facilities and “customer” experiences than smaller churches – appealing to those consumers.
What do you think?
– The Five Steps to Revitalize Your Church (p.3)