What Is Your Plan for Connecting People to Groups?

dereko@saddleback.com
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed May 23, 2018 2:17 am

Q3 - What Is Your Plan for Connecting People to Groups?

Postby dereko@saddleback.com » Fri May 04, 2018 11:57 am


derekolson1234@yahoo.com
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2018 10:15 pm
Location: Lake Forest
Contact:

Re: What Is Your Plan for Connecting People to Groups?

Postby derekolson1234@yahoo.com » Fri Nov 02, 2018 5:37 pm

Insightful book & video Steve, thank you! I am a huge proponent of the campaign strategy as the main way to connect people into groups!
Derek Olson
Small Group Network :lol:

cas.sufficool@gmail.com
Posts: 36
Joined: Mon Oct 22, 2018 9:26 pm

Rockbridge Student

Postby cas.sufficool@gmail.com » Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:14 am

The strategies that Steve gives for making people aware and connecting them to small groups is amazing. They are great tools to cater to your church and ministry setting. I don’t often like to take a business approach to church but the strategies he offers here seem more practical and applicable than some of the other corporate talk in previous videos and chapters. For those of you who have tried multiple strategies, which one have you found the most effective?

kenthall5@gmail.com
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Oct 23, 2018 7:30 pm

Rockbridge Student

Postby kenthall5@gmail.com » Wed Nov 07, 2018 5:18 pm

I can see Steve’s underlying concept in motivating people to form small groups at play in my church. He states on page 96 that “…you need to appeal to their felt need for relationship.” Regardless of their preferred worship style and church size, everyone has that innate need for relationship. When you combine that need with their need for a relationship with their Creator, you have a strong desire for forming such a group.

Even though my church is a small, traditional church, I see this need being met in our Sunday evening and Wednesday evening services. I only call them “services” because that’s what they’ve always been called. It is usually the same people who come to both sessions and they have the family-style relationship with each other. Indeed, many of them are relatives and others are long-time friends. They love spending time together and studying Scripture is an important part of their lives.

My strategy for getting others involved is two-fold. I mention the activities from these times in my Sunday morning sermon whenever they relate to the sermon topic (which is often). My hopes are that others will think, “Wow, that’s what they do? That’s interesting!” Secondly, there is a lot of “word of mouth” communication with others about the evening services, especially about Wednesday evenings. I have moved the Bible study to another more comfortable room with tables and refreshments. We watch a short video clip and discuss the passages. People are really enjoying this time interacting with their friends and their Lord. Has anyone tried any similar things with good results?
Last edited by kenthall5@gmail.com on Sun Nov 11, 2018 8:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

janetporter@sandyplains.org
Posts: 63
Joined: Mon Oct 22, 2018 9:49 pm

Rockbridge Student

Postby janetporter@sandyplains.org » Fri Nov 09, 2018 4:22 am

I love that Gladen includes a strategy to use with a Sunday school structure. This allows for us to meet the people where they are to help them grow without changing the group structure that they know and love. One of the first steps for our strategy will need to be talking with the teachers of these classes. We will need to find a way to communicate what a healthy Sunday school ministry is so they will take ownership of the process and make the improvements towards a healthier class. The practical steps will be a huge help to us and I pray that we are able to use them to aid in some spiritual transformation at our church.

I am wondering if in the same year we can have a form of the connection strategy for those yet to be involved in any kind of group. We have begun plans to begin a small group on Sunday mornings, so this strategy may be a huge help as we continue our plans for this group. The challenge with starting a new class is inviting the people you know need to attend without telling them they need to attend! I love the discussion questions, so will be using those to aid in the first few gatherings.

Has anyone ever done a connection event in a small traditional church? If so, what did you find that worked the best to encourage people to attend?

reidsmith777@gmail.com
Posts: 24
Joined: Sat Aug 04, 2018 3:29 pm

Re: What Is Your Plan for Connecting People to Groups?

Postby reidsmith777@gmail.com » Fri Nov 09, 2018 10:06 pm

On p. 98, Steve states, "We have found that it is better for all concerned to start new groups than for existing groups to multiply." I've found this to be true also and encourage emerging leaders/hosts to branch new groups vs birth out of existing groups by inviting people they know to join with them for a season. The personal invitation method has been the most fruitful over time - it's organic and unlimited in terms of its evangelistic potential. If your church facilities can accommodate evening services or a Sunday school model it can run alongside of your off-site groups as long as they're not working against each other as mentioned on p. 104. That said, I prefer groups that meet off-site (in homes) vs on-site (in classrooms) because I've found a greater diversity of groups emerge, the home environment fosters greater interactivity, off-site community-building has a lower impact on church facilities and staff, and ultimately God's people meeting and engaging with others on their 'home-turf' creates more evangelistic opportunities.

Regarding Janet's question on what works best with connecting people to groups in a small traditional church, I recommend not doing an event. Rather, begin to build your own group made up of people who can launch their own groups respectively after your initial season together. Use your times together as a group to equip them and build relationship with each other. As you do so, you might find a couple of people who can partner with you more closely to support the future growth of small groups in your church. In the short-term, however, each one should be challenged to invite people they know to join with them as they prepare to start their own groups. You can decide with these new leaders whether to open them up for others in the church to join before or after their first study together. Community-building momentum will build upon itself with each season of doing life together and before you know it a good percentage of your weekend attendance will be building relationships with others in groups!

janetporter@sandyplains.org
Posts: 63
Joined: Mon Oct 22, 2018 9:49 pm

Re: What Is Your Plan for Connecting People to Groups?

Postby janetporter@sandyplains.org » Sat Nov 10, 2018 2:49 am

reidsmith777@gmail.com wrote:
> On p. 98, Steve states, "We have found that it is better for all
> concerned to start new groups than for existing groups to multiply."
> I've found this to be true also and encourage emerging leaders/hosts to
> branch new groups vs birth out of existing groups by inviting people they
> know to join with them for a season. The personal invitation method has
> been the most fruitful over time - it's organic and unlimited in terms of
> its evangelistic potential. If your church facilities can accommodate
> evening services or a Sunday school model it can run alongside of your
> off-site groups as long as they're not working against each other as
> mentioned on p. 104. That said, I prefer groups that meet off-site (in
> homes) vs on-site (in classrooms) because I've found a greater diversity of
> groups emerge, the home environment fosters greater interactivity, off-site
> community-building has a lower impact on church facilities and staff, and
> ultimately God's people meeting and engaging with others on their
> 'home-turf' creates more evangelistic opportunities.
>
> Regarding Janet's question on what works best with connecting people to
> groups in a small traditional church, I recommend not doing an event.
> Rather, begin to build your own group made up of people who can launch
> their own groups respectively after your initial season together. Use your
> times together as a group to equip them and build relationship with each
> other. As you do so, you might find a couple of people who can partner with
> you more closely to support the future growth of small groups in your
> church. In the short-term, however, each one should be challenged to invite
> people they know to join with them as they prepare to start their own
> groups. You can decide with these new leaders whether to open them up for
> others in the church to join before or after their first study together.
> Community-building momentum will build upon itself with each season of
> doing life together and before you know it a good percentage of your
> weekend attendance will be building relationships with others in groups!

Thank you!! That is exactly what I have started doing and it is encouraging to hear this affirmation. It seems like a long process, but worth it in the end. I have being leading a "Ladies Leaders" group and they were recruited with the purpose of filling up so they can lead their own group wherever God is leading. So super excited to hear that I am on the God-path to building His kingdom with our church family, even if it takes years. :)

reidsmith777@gmail.com
Posts: 24
Joined: Sat Aug 04, 2018 3:29 pm

Re: What Is Your Plan for Connecting People to Groups?

Postby reidsmith777@gmail.com » Mon Nov 19, 2018 12:17 am

janetporter@sandyplains.org wrote:
> Thank you!! That is exactly what I have started doing and it is encouraging to hear
> this affirmation. It seems like a long process, but worth it in the end. I have being
> leading a "Ladies Leaders" group and they were recruited with the purpose
> of filling up so they can lead their own group wherever God is leading. So super
> excited to hear that I am on the God-path to building His kingdom with our church
> family, even if it takes years. :)

That's great, Janet! I believe the leader-to-leader relationships being built on the front-end will pay off long-term for your church's small group ministry!

roger@smallgroupinternational.com
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Aug 13, 2018 12:24 pm
Location: Fredericksburg, Virginia, USA
Contact:

Re: What Is Your Plan for Connecting People to Groups?

Postby roger@smallgroupinternational.com » Fri Apr 26, 2019 7:50 pm

When considering the seasons for small groups and connecting people into those groups, don't discount the summertime. Below is my experience regarding the value of implementing short-term groups as a part of your strategy. What are you planning to do during the summer?

5 Tips for Launching Summertime Short-Term Groups (https://www.smallgroupnetwork.com/5-tip ... rm-groups/)

A few years ago my church encouraged small group leaders to take summers off. But I believed God wanted me to lead a couple of groups that summer.

A year before, I purchased a 6-week video-based study. The topic of the study was anxiety, stress and overwhelm. I was sure God wanted me to lead the study, but I never felt at peace about doing it until that summer.

I received permission and led two short-term small groups.

Three Months Without Community Is a Long Time

I advertised the first session in multiple ways and many people expressed an interest. But almost no one signed up. It was starting in less than a week.

After some reflection, I realized I was working hard to recruit but I wasn’t asking God what I should do. We had a long conversation and His answer was as clear as if you and I were talking face-to-face. He said He would add 8 people to the group and it would happen without any action on my part.

The next day I received an email from a small group leader. She said her group wanted to participate in this study over the summer. They didn’t want to be off the entire summer. I had 10 people in that first summer group!

Twelve weeks or more without fellowship, Bible study, etc. as a group is a long time. This group recognized that and took advantage of being together for six weeks of the summer months. This still gave several weeks of downtime for everyone.

Recruiting Tool for Small Groups

The second summer group was completely different. God was definitely teaching me some lessons while He changed lives of the members at the same time.

God provided another great roster of members and I quickly learned that almost all of them had never attended a small group before. They believed signing up for a small group was a long-term commitment they weren’t willing to make. However, they were willing to sign up for a 6-week small group that was studying a topic of interest.

Most of them signed up in a small group by the end of our short-term study.

5 Tips for Short-Term Groups

Several lives were changed and several lasting friendships were built that summer in these two small groups. But God taught me some benefits of short-term small groups that I didn’t fully appreciate until then.

Here are 5 tips to ensure you receive those short-term small group benefits:

1. Select Bible study topics that would get the interest of those who are not attending small groups.
2. Keep the length of the small group to about 6-8 weeks. This allows enough time to do some of the Bible studies available, but still leaves a few weeks for downtime for the leader and active members.
3. If there are members who are not in a “long-term” small group, make sure they know the benefits and how to sign up for one. (Note: I invited a couple of small group leaders to one of our meetings to do a question-and-answer session with my group members.)
4. Consider advertising short-term small groups to those not attending church, if the topic might interest them. It could be another method of outreach.
5. Use these short-term small groups as a starting point for your new group leaders. Like some of my members, they may be nervous about committing for a significant period of time without knowing if they enjoy it. This gives them that experience without the longer commitment.

Bonus tip: Make sure God is leading your actions. I learned the hard way (again) that God is in control, not me.

If you currently don’t have small groups meeting in the summer, consider setting up a few short-term groups as a start.


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests