Category Archives: Project Management Series

Project Management Resources

One of the most important parts of project management for children’s pastors is determining your available resources and deciding what resources you need.

Money:

The first resource you’ll want to look at is how much money has been budgeted for your project. Usually the amount of money is beyond your control. Pastors and councils usually set up the budget. But it helps to work closely with your pastor and communicate how much you need to accomplish your project and which items can be taken off the wish list if need be. If you do that, your pastor will be more likely to work with you in establishing a great program.

Once you know how much the church will provide, look at your budget creatively. Are there items that can be donated by people or businesses? Do you want to fundraise to get extra money? Will you take an offering to defray expenses.

Sometimes there are easy ways to cut expenses. For instance, to use the VBS example, you could buy craft materials at a discount craft store to make crafts rather than use the expensive kits most VBS’s provide. Or you could eliminate the student books and substitute activities.

Calendar:

Your church calendar is a resource you can’t afford to overlook. Don’t just find an empty date on the calendar. Check what’s going on with other ministries in the church.

If you use teens for your event and the teens are going on a youth retreat, you might not want to schedule your event for the same week-end. If you do, you’ll find yourself scrambling for workers.

Also if your church has a busy season, your workers and parents may be overloaded by one more event on the calendar. A little pre-planning will save you headaches.

Once you have a date scheduled, communicate to the church and ministry leaders so they won’t plan anything to conflict with your project. Also let your workers know early so they can plan to work at the event.

Workers:

Determine how many workers you’ll need and write short job descriptions for each role your workers will play. Also have a wish list of extra jobs in case you have more workers than you thought you would.

You might also want to schedule different people for clean up and follow up after the event. Sometimes after an event, your workers will be tired and want to go home rather than tear down. If you have another crew ready to come in, it will make things that much easier.

Project Management Scope – Keeping Your Focus

Project Management for Children’s Pastors

Scope – Keeping Your Focus

Hitting the Target Goal

Every Children’s Pastor should know the basics of project management. Project management is a system to handle the many facets of a project including scope, time, resources, and cost. Some major projects a children’s pastor might have throughout the year that project management skills might help with are Vacation Bible School, benevolence projects, missions projects, Christmas program, fun and evangelistic events, and other major projects.

Unfortunately most Children’s Pastors try to manage these major projects with to do lists and time management systems meant for every day occurrences.  As essential as project management is, most children’s pastors have never been trained in it and have no clue what to do.

In the next couple of weeks, I’ll post about some of the essentials in project management and how you can use them in managing your children’s ministry events. Today I’ll cover scope.

Scope is a term used by project management to define what a project’s objective is. Basically you’re are stating your vision for the project. I’ll give you an example.

What is the main goal or objective for Vacation Bible School. There may be more than one. Is it to excite children in your church about God? Is the main goal to see children saved? Is discipleship and missions a big part of your VBS? Is your main goal to get children to attend your church?

All of these goals are good, but you need to focus on one of these as a primary goal. If you try to focus on all of these things, the result will be confusing and haphazard. Once you know your main goal, it will influence everything else about how you manage your project.

For instance, if your main goal is to see children saved at your VBS, you’ll want to pick a curriculum that is strong in emphasizing that. You probably won’t want to emphasis mission giving as much. You’ll want to advertize outside of the church, and you’ll want to encourage children to bring their unsaved friends.

If discipleship with a missions emphasis is your main goal, you’ll advertise mainly inside the church. You’ll want to choose a curriculum that emphasizes discipleship and missions. You might want to encourage children to save or do fundraisers for the offerings taken. That emphasis will affect every choice you make.

If your goal is to increase your church attendance, you might want to reach out to the entire family, maybe have a class or fellowship group for parents while their children are in VBS. Follow-up will be one of your most important tools for this goal. And you’ll want to make sure every parent receives information about what happens normally in the children’s ministry and other ministries in the church.

Every children’s ministry event you have should start with Scope. Defining vision and objectives will help you focus your project in a way to make it more effective. If you have too many targets to aim at, you probably won’t hit any of them. Scope, just like the scope on a camera or a rifle,  helps you keep your focus and hit the target you’re aiming at.

Project Management For Children’s Pastors

It’s time to start planning children’s ministry for the school year. Most church calendars go September to August, so I’ll spend the next couple of weeks giving you helpful planning advise.

Project Management is an essential tool for children’s pastors. Children’s ministry is filled with huge projects that can’t be done effectively without project management. Some projects include Christmas and Easter programs, discipleship programs, holiday events such as a Halleluia Costume Carnival, Easter Egg Hunt and Back to School Bash, summer outreach, missions projects, choir, drama – the list goes on to infinity.

Most children’s pastors haven’t been trained with the skills they need to manage all these projects, but they can learn these skills. Here’s a series of blog posts to help you learn project management for children’s pastors.

Part 1: Introduction and Scope

Part 2: Resources and Team Building

Part 3: List Your Steps

Part 4: Work Your Plan