An Open Letter About Why It’s Time to Ditch Open Letters

The idea of “Open Letters” has become all the rage these days. You can find “Open Letters” in newspapers, magazines, or online addressed to politicians, religious leaders, CEO’s, and even to local high school football coaches. I don’t know who wrote the first open letter – and he or she may have had a legitimate issue and wanted to bring it up in a public space. But today, they’re so ubiquitous that in my opinion they’ve

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It’s Time to Stop Creating Lame Marketing Campaigns for Millennials

(Or anyone else for that matter)

Thinking about all the trendy advertising efforts businesses and churches have done to millennials is depressing. Churches are especially guilty of cheesy, overdone, stock footage driven marketing efforts because anytime you try to reach an audience through what you ASSUME is their style, behavior or choices – or you try to group them all into a research statistic – you can always bet on failure. Shortcuts don’t

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The Problem When Christians Become Armchair Quarterbacks

Of all the damage Hurricane Harvey did to south Texas, one of the most frustrating revelations was the number of Christians who felt “called” to be armchair quarterbacks. Plenty of them surfaced writing about what Joel Osteen and Lakewood Church did wrong (in their opinion). But it’s also reminded me of all the others who feel just as “called” to address the theology, style, behavior, choices, and other aspects of numerous pastors, leaders, and

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Facing the Canon with J John

My long time friend J John is one of the most powerful, compelling, and hilarious speakers I know.  Based in the United Kingdom, he has an amazing ministry with a global reach. Recently he broadcast a one-hour television episode we did together for his “Facing the Canon” TV series.  (J John is a Canon in the Church of England, so sorry to disappoint, but I wasn’t shot out of anything.) He’s a terrific interviewer, and if you watch the program, you’ll discover just about everything I know about media, working behind the scenes with churches and ministries, and how to engage today’s culture.  We had a terrific time and I think you’ll enjoy it:

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Leaders: What You Should Know About Your Team

Whenever I consult with a church, ministry, or nonprofit, I always begin by looking closely at the team. The employees are the ones that make an organization work, so learning as much as we can about them is critical – and I’m often surprised at how little pastors and other leaders actually know about the personal side of their team. If you’re not taking the time to know your people well, you’re shortchanging your vision. Having studied teams over the years, here’s a starting list of issues leaders need to know about their teams:

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The Truth About Using Ghostwriters for Christian Books

Today we live in an era of megachurches, major ministries, and global nonprofits. In some ways (both good and bad), these large religious and nonprofit organizations have become like international corporations, involving radio and television studios, publishing businesses, international conferences, educational outreaches, and more. And the bigger churches and ministries grow, the less time their leaders have to

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Do Donors Prefer Email or Snail Mail?

The answer will surprise you...

Most donors see advantages to both e-mail and direct mail communication from the organizations they support, and a new study reveals that very few completely reject one form or the other. The study, of 1,000 American charitable donors shows that very few donors consistently see e-mail or direct mail as a better way for non-profit organizations to communicate with them. The Donor Mindset Study, conducted jointly by Grey Matter Research (Phoenix, AZ) and Opinions 4 Good (Op4G, Portsmouth, NH), asked donors to compare the two methods of communication from organizations they already support on six different factors. Which method is:

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By The Time You See the Threat, It’s Already Too Late

There's a career killing bullet out there with your name on it.

You can take this to the bank: Far too many ideas, organizations, and personal careers fail because they didn’t see the threats coming in time. For example, the Wall Street Journal reported recently that big food brands are in trouble. “For over a century, brands such as Kellogg’s cereal, Campbell ’s soup and Aunt Jemima pancake mix filled pantries of American households that wanted safe, affordable and convenient food. They provided companies with reliable revenue growth from grocery shelves, and there was

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