A challenge for communicators is to continually tackle the work we do, regardless of how fun and exciting it is. Sometimes, it’s downright boring. This five-part series tackles boring vs. fun in church communication. Read Part 1, Embrace Them Together.
Cool new ideas or projects have a powerful pull on creative people. We are naturally drawn to work on them and give them our energy and attention. And there’s never a shortage of projects and opportunities that entice us.
How do we choose? How do we determine what is worth our time?
First, we must remember that the fun will become boring. The things we consider boring today were once new and exciting projects. Guess what will eventually happen to that new social media channel, smartphone app, document, form or communication project? It will have to be managed, maintained and sustained. It will become boring, a pain and then neglected.
To help us choose (and up to a certain extent protect ourselves from that viscous cycle), we can filter new opportunities through the following questions:
- How strategic is the idea or project? The opportunity must directly align with the vision, mission and purpose of the church. If it doesn’t, it will not only waste time but it will take more time and energy to undo and get back on track.
- How can this be sustained? Identify the resources (time, money and manpower) involved in making it happen and to keeping it running if applicable.
- What value does it add to the church? Identify the measurable result that the new project will produce. The outcome should ideally be proportionate to the resources needed.
- Who will own it? Every project must have a leader who will champion the purpose and drive the goals of the project. This person doesn’t always have to be you.
- Who will maintain it? An assessment of the tasks and responsibilities involved to sustain the process is the most critical step in addressing the “boring” issue. Again, this doesn’t have to be you. It is also important to scope and determine if more than one person is needed. Some projects require a team of people to keep running viably.
I am not gonna lie; the process of collecting the answer to these questions can, ironically, be boring. The benefit of having the holistic basis for selection and prioritization of opportunities is well worth the short-term “boredom” compared to the long-term drudgery not to mention the risk of future damage control or erosion of credibility.
Developing the habit and discipline of objectively testing opportunities is an effective way of minimizing the influx of things that eventually become boring and eventually lead to neglect.
What do you do to protect yourself from adding the boring to your plate?