goal setting church

Do you remember the last time you launched an initiative, and it died? It may have been an outreach ministry, a new discipleship initiative, or a shepherding routine, but the result was the same.  Maybe it was a quick and sudden death or dragged out over time until no one realized the thing had died.  Most of our goals go by the wayside. Statistics show that 80% of us that make a new year’s resolution have abandoned ship by mid-February. That’s six weeks into the goal!  Well, what happened?  For most of us, any new goal gets lost in the whirlwind of life.  In the book 4DX, 4 Disciplines of Execution, we are challenged to follow four steps to choose one wildly important goal for your church.

I know what you are thinking, another formula, another strategy; here we go again.  But these disciplines are proven and tested in business, personal life, and the church.  I have followed these disciplines in my personal life to get things done, and it works.  Here is a summary of the process: 

Focus on the wildly important for your Church.

Narrow it down to one or two wildly important goals; this part is huge.  Most goals fail because they are one of many, and we always think we can focus on multiple things simultaneously. The truth is, we cannot.  Not everything is wildly important. Do the hard work and wrestle over what truly deserves this kind of discipline to get something done.  What is the one goal that will impact your church the most?  The one goal that will impact your church the most is called the “WIG.” Once you find your “WIG,” a wildly important goal, put it on and wear it.  You should only wear one wig at a time.

Act on lead measures for your Church goals.

Second, you need to act on lead measures.  Lead measures are those specific things that you will do now and in the near future to reach your goal.  Lead measures are different from lag measures.  We usually keep track of lag measures in a church, and they are always in the past. A lag measure might be attendance, offering, number of volunteers, etc.  Lead measures are those specific activities you will do this week to reach your goal.  Once you determine your lead measures, you must put them on your calendar and execute them weekly.  If it is not a daily or weekly activity, the lead measure will eventually fade into the future.

Keep a compelling scoreboard for your Church goals.

The third discipline is “keeping a compelling scoreboard.” What you measure is what gets done.  You need to measure not only your lag measure but also your lead measures.  For example, if you were trying to increase your attendance (a lag measure), you would also need to measure your lead measure. Let’s say your lead measure was to invite people to church personally.  You would need to measure that as well.  Over time, you will see if your predictive lead measure increases your lag measure.  If it is not, you will adjust it until you get it right. But how will you know if you ever get it right if you do not measure your lead measure, those specific activities you do weekly?

Create a cadence of accountability in your Church.

The final discipline is “creating a cadence of accountability.”  If you have a goal, you need to share it out loud with others.  Sharing the goal out loud is where I struggle the most with this process.  I like to keep my goals inward.  There is something powerful about accountability that keeps us committed to the goal. Most “WIGs” are so significant that they cannot be accomplished by one person anyway, so you should have others working on the goal.  Accountability should be kept up weekly where those working on the goal share what they have done on their lead measure activities. How many people did you invite? Who did you ask? The more specific, the better.  


For more info or training on identifying your WIG and implementing 4DX, contact us at Develop My Ministry!